Wade Albert

Member since: Saturday, 29 December 2018
Last Visit: Never
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What has been the general nature of your practice?
I began my legal career working for two preeminent trial judges on the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas. I started as an intern law clerk to the Honorable Sandra Mazer Moss, and then served for almost four years as law clerk to the Honorable Nitza I. Quiñones Alejandro prior to President Obama appointing her to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.

With Judge Quiñones, I assisted the court in presiding over more than 150 complex civil trials, ruling on almost 1,000 civil and criminal motions, and drafting legal decisions in matters appealed to the Pennsylvania Superior and Commonwealth Courts. I also had the opportunity while clerking for Judge Quiñones to personally conduct and oversee jury selection in dozens of cases.

After leaving the First Judicial District, I have been in private practice on both the plaintiff and defense sides. I initially practiced at a plaintiff-side boutique firm where I focused on litigating employment, civil rights, commercial, and white-collar criminal matters in federal and state courts in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, at both the trial and appellate levels. Among my accomplishments, I successfully represented clients who were discriminated in the workplace, victims of police brutality, and individuals who found themselves on the losing end of bad business transactions.

Then, to enrich my understanding of the business world, I went to Sobol Law Group, P.C., a boutique management-oriented firm, where I now primarily represent companies and business executives in all aspects of labor and employment law.

Over the past few years I have also taken a growing number of pro bono work which included handling hundreds of expungement petitions and litigating divorce, child support, criminal, and election law cases.
Why do you consider yourself qualified to be judge?
I believe that I am qualified to be a judge because I have broad experience in the law, I have demonstrated a commitment to public service, and I have proven to be a competent leader.

With regard to my experience, I would bring to the bench a knowledge of diverse areas of the law and an understanding of what it means to participate in the justice system from a variety of perspectives. Likewise, my background provides me with the invaluable ability to approach cases objectively because I understand the viewpoints and concerns of many different stakeholders in the legal system.

My history of public service also shows that I am well suited for the bench. Over the years I have been involved in many organizations, political action committees, and causes that seek to advance equality and improve the community. Among other things, I served as President of the Center City Residents' Association, the civic association that represents the neighborhood of Center City West; as Chair of the Endorsement Committee of the Liberty City LGBT Democratic Club, a progressive political action committee that advocates for LGBT issues and seeks to elect LGBT-identifying and LGBT-friendly candidates in Southeastern Pennsylvania; and as a member of the board of the Philly Set Go, a bi-partisan political action committee that seeks to encourage millennials to be more involved in the political process. I additionally have volunteered countless hours working pro bono for clients who could not otherwise afford legal representation. I believe this record establishes that, if elected, I will use my office to deliver justice fairly, impartially, and with empathy.

Furthermore, I have cultivated the leadership skills necessary to be a judge. Not only must a judge exercise control over their own courtroom, but they must also be able to manage an office. Through my professional and nonprofit experience, I have shown that I can do both. I have successfully held leadership roles which demonstrated my ability to improve organizational efficiency, delegate tasks, and navigate difficult interpersonal relationships. Moreover, during my career, I have mentored many young attorneys and maintained positive relationships with my co-workers, partners, assistants, co-counsel, and opposing counsel.
What is it about our criminal justice system that inspires you?
I am most inspired when I meet former offenders who have been able to use the resources available in the criminal justice system to better their lives and become productive members of society.
What about our current criminal justice system do you believe needs to be reformed?
While the criminal justice system in Philadelphia has seen many improvements in recent years, I believe that more work is needed. For example, I believe in sentencing reform to eliminate the sentencing disparities that often negatively impact people of color. I believe that sentences should be crafted to encourage rehabilitation, not set an offender on a path towards recidivism. I also believe that more resources should be channeled into diversion programs to give non-violent offenders the tools they need for better life opportunities.
As a judge, what would your sentencing philosophy be?
I understand the justice system exists to keep streets safe and prevent people from injuring others. Victims are entitled to justice. However, punishments must be rehabilitative. I believe that to the greatest extent possible, people should be given the opportunity for a second chance and the means to pursue a better path moving forward.
Have you ever woken up in the middle of the night thinking about a case and wishing you had handled something differently? If so, please describe one situation.
It happens to me all the time. I mostly worry about what I have done and what I can do to best advance my clients' interests.
Who are your role models and why?
One of my role models is Sonia Sotomayor because she overcame so much adversity in her youth to ultimately become the leading progressive voice on the U.S. Supreme Court. And just as important to me, even though she is one of the most influential people in American government right now, she is humble with a wicked sense of humor.

Another one of my role models is the Roman statesman Cincinnatus. At the height of near absolute power, he chose to retire from office and go back to his farm. His story teaches that the goal of public service should be to better the community, not seek personal gain.
What is your favorite book, movie, or tv show of all time and why did it speak to you so much?
My favorite book is probably "The Death and Life of Great American Cities" by Jane Jacobs. It helped me realize how all the moving parts in our society impact the vitality of our neighborhoods, and that we need strong, civically-engaged communities to have a functioning city. Before reading this book, I had always loved living in Philadelphia, but I was not fully able to explain why. After reading the book, I understood: our diversity is our greatest strength and it is what allows Philadelphia to thrive.
Name a song that you were obsessed with as a teenager.
"Losing My Religion" by R.E.M.
What is you favorite number?
Hits: 792

Three openly LGBT candidates have announced runs for 10-year judgeships on the Philadelphia Common Pleas Court, which rules on civil, criminal and family matters. Henry Sias, Tiffany Palmer and Wade Albert are running as Democrats in the May 21 primary. A primary win would ensure a follow-up...

Created: 06 December 2018