Judge Leadbetter was appointed to the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania by Governor Ridge in May of 1996, was elected to the Court in 1997, and was retained for an additional ten-year term in 2007. She was elected President Judge effective January 7, 2007 and served in that capacity until 2012. In 1999, she was also appointed to the Court of Judicial Discipline for a four-year term. From 1990 until she joined the Commonwealth Court, Judge Leadbetter was a shareholder in the law firm of Fineman & Bach, P.C., where she specialized in civil litigation, and also served as a Judge Pro Tempore of the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas (1991-96). Judge Leadbetter is a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, a member of the Widener Law and Government Institute Board of Visitors, a Master of the J. Willard O’Brien American Inn of Court, and serves on the Board of Directors of the Pennsylvania Bar Institute.

She has taught trial and appellate advocacy in various venues, including Temple Law School’s LL.M. Program in Trial Advocacy and continuing legal education courses sponsored by the American Bar Association Appellate Judges' Conference, the Pennsylvania Bar Institute, the Eastern District Continuing Legal Education Committee, the Philadelphia Bar Association, and the Academy of Trial Advocacy. Judge Leadbetter previously served on the Third Circuit Lawyers' Advisory Committee (1988-91, chair 1991), the Federal Courts Committee of the Philadelphia Bar Association (1990), as a director of the Historical Society of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania (1990s), and as a member of that Court’s Local Rules Advisory Committee.

Before entering private practice, Judge Leadbetter was an Assistant District Attorney for Philadelphia County (1971-76) and an Assistant United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania (1976-81). She graduated in 1968 from Rice University and in 1971 from the University of Pittsburgh School of Law, where she served as Managing Editor of the Law Review. Judge Leadbetter retired in January 2016 and assumed senior judge status in February 2016.

She is married to Gary R. Leadbetter, a Montgomery County attorney, and they have two daughters and three grandchildren.


Last updated 12/7/19



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