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Joan Van Pelt
|Joan Van Pelt|
|New Jersey General Assembly District 22|
|Place of birth||Plainfield, New Jersey|
Van Pelt is an attorney. She recently retired from the Office of the Public Defender after 27 years of service and now maintains a limited private practice as well as teaching in law schools and continuing legal education programs. During her 34-year legal career she managed the Office of the Public Defender's Appellate Division, built and led the Alternative Commitment Unit, litigated death penalty cases, served as an assistant prosecutor, and was the first woman in New Jersey to achieve the Supreme Court designation of Certified Criminal Trial Attorney.
She is a past member of the New Jersey Supreme Court Committee on Criminal Practice, a former trustee of the Union County Legal Services Board, and served five years on the District XII Ethics Committee. She has been a longtime leader of the Richard J. Hughes American Inn of Court, serving as president from 1999 until 2001, and is a past president of Women Lawyers in Union County.
Van Pelt graduated from Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota with a B.A. in Economics in 1973. She graduated from Washington University law school in 1976.
Van Pelt was a candidate for District 22 of the New Jersey General Assembly. He was defeated in the November 8 general election. Van Pelt and Jeffrey First ran unopposed in the Republican Primary on June 7. Gerald Green and Linda Stender ran unopposed in the Democratic primary.
Van Pelt lives with her husband, Jim Pivnichny and their two sons Douglas and Charles. Douglas is a law student at Washington University in St. Louis, and Charles is a sophomore at Richard Stockton College.
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