Judge Fitzgerald has more than 25 years of experience as a Bankruptcy Judge, having presided over matters in the Western District of Pennsylvania (where she was chief judge for five years) as well as in the District of Delaware (20 years), the Eastern District of Pennsylvania (8 years), and the U.S. Virgin Islands (9 years). During her tenure as a bankruptcy judge, Fitzgerald presided over many significant corporate cases including: Flintkote, Kaiser Aluminum, Corp., Owens Corning, W.R. Grace, Pittsburgh Corning Corporation, Armstrong World Industries, United States Mineral Products, U.S.G., Specialty Products Holding Corp., Maronda Homes, Fleming Steel Company, Federal-Mogul Global, Innovative Communications Corp., Just For Feet, Inc., WorldClass Processing, Inc., Combustion Engineering, Inc., Peregrine Systems, American Pad & Paper Co., PHP Healthcare Corporation, Color Tile, Inc., Italian Oven, Shannopin Mining, Busy Beaver Bldg. Centers, and Papercraft Corporation.
Judi has unique experience in mass tort bankruptcies, having adjudicated more cases involving section 524 asbestos trusts than any other bankruptcy judge in the country. She has an extensive trial background and frequently served as a settlement judge and mediator. She was the sole judge hearing all chapter 13 cases in the Western District of Pennsylvania and Delaware for many years.
- Pennsylvania State Courts
- United States Supreme Court
- United States Tax Court
- United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
- United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania
- The Pennsylvania Supreme Court
- Judge Judith K. Fitzgerald, Judge Arthur J. Gonzalez, Judge Mary F. Walrath, Bankruptcy, National ed. (The Rutter Group Practice Guide).
- Judith K. Fitzgerald & Ramona M. Arena Baker, Bankruptcy and Divorce, Support and Property Division. Aspen. 1998.
- Associate Editor, The American Bankruptcy Law Journal.
Awards and Honors
- Lawrence P. King Award for professionalism and actions to expand the scope of educational opportunities for bankruptcy professionals.
- Designated as one of the top 10 bankruptcy jurists of the year several times by Turnaround and Workouts.
Selected Professional Activities
- An elected member of the American Law Institute
- A Fellow of the American College of Bankruptcy
- A member of the Bankruptcy Section Executive Council of the Commercial Law League of America
- President of the National Conference of Bankruptcy Judges
- Board member of the American Bankruptcy Institute and co-chair of the ABI Mass Tort Committee
- Founder of the Law Student Writing Competition and the Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference for the American Bankruptcy Institute
- Founder and member of the Western District of Pennsylvania Bankruptcy American Inn of Court, which now bears her name
- Chair of the Audit Committee of the Allegheny County Bar Association
- Member of the Bankruptcy Judges’ Advisory Committee of the Administrative Office of the United States Courts, which she chaired for two years
- Member of the Education Committee for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit