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County Judges

Contact Information

Bradford County Courthouse
301 Main Street
Towanda, PA 18848

Phone: (570) 265-1707

Office Hours

8:30 AM to 4:30 PM

About the Department

The courts are the judicial branch of government, a co-equal of the executive and legislative branches. The Bradford County Courts are courts of general jurisdiction and are part of the Pennsylvania Unified Judicial System. General jurisdiction means that our court handles criminal, civil, family court, orphans court and juvenile matters. The Court of Common Pleas is also the court of appeals for magisterial district court decisions as well as Pennsylvania Department of Transportation license appeals and local agency appeals.

Department Services

Our judges hear all types of matters listed above. We have a full-time hearing master who hears juvenile and family court cases. We also appoint special masters to assist with our family court caseload. Our court system operates on a continuous calendar. This means that court is in session throughout the year and jurors are summoned for each trial week. The daily court calendar is available for viewing by clicking on http://ujsportal.pacourts.us.  Public information regarding criminal cases is also available through this website link. The court staff consists of a district court administrator, deputy court administrator, a court reporter/judicial secretary and four court monitors/judicial secretaries, a court administrator’s secretary, two law clerks and a tip staff. Bradford County Local rules can be viewed by clicking on the Court Administration tab and then click on “Documents & Forms”.

Department Services

County judges preside over all types of matters including:

  • Criminal
  • Civil
  • Family Court
  • Orphans Court
  • Juvenile Matters


  • Maureen Beirne, President Judge
  • Evan S. Williams, III, Judge
  • Jeffrey A. Smith, Senior Judge

County Judges

  • President Judge, Maureen Beirne

    Judge Beirne grew up in Athens, Pennsylvania. She graduated from Athens Area High School in 1980. She obtained a bachelor of science degree in chemistry from Spring Hill College, Mobile Alabama in 1984 and her law degree from Syracuse School of Law in 1988. Thereafter, she joined her father, the late Attorney Robert J. Beirne, in his private general practice of law in Athens where she practiced law with her father until he passed away in 1995. She continued in the general practice of law in Athens through October, 2008 when Governor Rendell’s appointment of her to the bench was confirmed by the Senate. Judge Beirne obtained extensive experience in all areas of the general practice including but not limited to criminal, family, wills and estates, real estate, workers compensation, personal injury, business and corporate, municipal and zoning law. For many years, she served as Bradford County Child Advocate. Her professional memberships included Pennsylvania Criminal Defense Attorneys Association, Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers Association, Victims of Crime and Victims of Juvenile Offenders Local Policy Board, Pennsylvania and Bradford County Bar Associations. She is a member and lecture of St. Joseph’s Roman Catholic Church; a member of the Board of Trustees for Sayre Public Library and Tioga Point Museum. She also served on other non-profit Boards over the years such has Valley Economic Development Association, Penn York Opportunities and Greater Valley EMS. Judge Beirne and her husband, Max Gannon reside in Athens.

  • Evan S. Williams

    Judge Evan S. Williams III is one of two judges in the Court of Common Pleas of Bradford County. Judge Williams was born and raised in Troy, Pennsylvania. After graduating from Troy Area High School in 1989, he attended Cornell University where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree, played four years of intercollegiate football, and, lucky for him, met his bride-to-be, Tricia Tafe (Williams). While at Cornell, he led the Sprint Football team as captain and quarterback, earning All-Ivy Academic honors. After graduation, Judge Williams returned to Ithaca to attend Cornell Law School.

    After graduating from Cornell Law School in 1996, Judge Williams followed Tricia—with her encouragement and consent—to Chicago, where she earned her doctorate in medicine.

    After practicing law for nearly six years in the litigation department of a mid-size Chicago firm, Judge Williams, his wife (by then a doctor with a specialty in Family Practice, who has since completed a fellowship in Integrative Medicine), and their one year old daughter, Sophie, returned to his hometown of Troy where he began working with his father and other colleagues in the local firm of Brann, Williams, Caldwell & Sheetz.  Their family grew to include two more children, Owen and Natalie.

    After an additional fourteen years of private practice, primarily serving citizens and businesses in transactional work and litigation in state and federal courts, Judge Williams was elected to the bench and began serving Bradford County alongside President Judge Beirne in January of 2016. While seated at the bench, Judge Williams is pleased and honored to have a view of the portrait of his grandfather, the late Evan S. Williams, who served as Judge of Bradford County from January of 1968 to his retirement in December of 1983.

    Judge Williams hears all cases – civil, criminal, family, dependency, delinquency, and orphans’. Judge Williams sits on several local committees, including the Bradford/Sullivan County Addiction Network (BSCAN), and the Bradford County Housing Initiative, and various subcommittees of the Criminal Justice Advisory Board. In June of 2018, Judge Williams was appointed to and became a member of the Ethics Committee of the Pennsylvania Conference of State Trial Judges.

    Judge Williams remains involved in his community, devoting significant time to the development of local youth, often coaching various team sports, including football, basketball, baseball, and soccer.