Max Baer

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Max Baer
Court Information:
Pennsylvania Supreme Court
Title:   Justice
Salary:  $200,000
Selection:   Elected
Active:   2003 - 2023
Past post:   Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas, Pennsylvania
Past term:   1990 - 2003
Past position:   Judge
Personal History
Born:   December 24, 1947
Party:   Democratic
Undergraduate:   University of Pittsburgh, 1971
Law School:   Duquesne University, 1975
Candidate 2013:
Candidate for:  Supreme Court
Position:  Retention
State:  Pennsylvania
Election information 2013:
Incumbent:  Yes
Election date:  11/5/2013
Retention vote %:  71.0% ApprovedA

Max Baer is a justice for the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. He was elected to the court in 2003 and was retained in 2013 for a term that expires in 2023.[1]


In 1971, Baer graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with a Bachelor of Arts and, in 1975, he graduated with a J.D. from Duquesne University. From 1985 to 1986, he attended Robert Morris College for credits in the Masters of Tax Program.[1]


Awards and associations


  • 2004: Most Valuable Peacemaker, Pennsylvania's Council of Mediators[1]
  • 2003: Humanitarian Award for Community Involvement from the J.N.L. Club
  • 2003: Champion of Children's Award, Homeless Children's Education Fund
  • 2000: Child Advocate of the Year, Pennsylvania Bar Association
  • 1999: Child Advocacy Award for Legal Contributions Advancing the Welfare of our Nation's Children
  • 1999: Judicial Achievement Award for Advancing Pro Bono Activities
  • 1998: Adoption Excellence Award for Judicial Innovation, Federal Department of Health and Human Services
  • 1998: Robert S. Steward Award for Distinguished Service to Pennsylvania Families
  • 1997: Adoption Advocate of the Year, Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare[2]


  • Former Chair, Domestic Relations Procedural Rules Committee of the Supreme Court
  • Ex Officio Representative, Juvenile Court Judges Commission
  • Former Member, Joint State Government Commission on Adoption Law and Services to Children and Youth
  • Former Chair, Pennsylvania Conference of Trial Judges, Family Law Section[1]



Baer was retained to the Supreme Court with 71.0 percent of the vote on November 5, 2013.(99% of districts reporting)[3][4]

Bar Association rating

Yes check.svg The Pennsylvania Bar Association recommended Baer for retention.[5]


Baer was elected to the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania.

Campaign contributors

Baer raised he raised $1,608,597 in his 2003 campaign for the court. The Pennsylvania Democratic Party was the largest single contributor with $233,500, or 14.52% of the total giving.

For a complete list of Baer's contributions, visit: Follow the Money: Max Baer

Notable cases

Controversial sex-offender decision

In 1998, as a judge with the Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas, Baer denied a request from a county office to move a child from the home of her foster father, a past sex offender. The Allegheny County Children, Youth and Families office found out that the father plead guilty in 1960 to sodomy and incest, and that the child was also sexually abused in a previous foster home. Since the ruling was being appealed to the superior court, Baer felt that they would decide the matter. However, before that occurred, he said, "it is in the best interest of this child to remain in this home at this time."[6]

Political ideology

See also: Political ideology of State Supreme Court Justices

In October 2012, political science professors Adam Bonica and Michael Woodruff of Stanford University attempted to determine the partisan ideology of state supreme court justices in their paper, State Supreme Court Ideology and 'New Style' Judicial Campaigns. A score above 0 indicated a more conservative leaning ideology while scores below 0 are more liberal. Baer received a Campaign finance score (CFscore) of -0.53, indicating a liberal ideological leaning. This is more liberal than the average CF score of -0.02 that justices received in Pennsylvania. The study is based on data from campaign contributions by judges themselves, the partisan leaning of contributors to the judges or, in the absence of elections, the ideology of the appointing body (governor or legislature). This study is not a definitive label of a justice, but an academic gauge of various factors.[7]

See also

External links