Former Dauphin County Judge Todd Hoover dies at 61

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Judge Todd Hoover

HARRISBURG, Pa.–Former Dauphin County Judge Todd A. Hoover died Wednesday.  He was 61.

“This is a sad and tragic loss for our courthouse family as well as the Hoover family and the Dauphin County legal community,” said Dauphin County Court of Common Pleas President Judge Richard A. Lewis. “Not only was Judge Hoover a superb jurist, he was also a man of deep faith, infinite kindness and sincere compassion.  A true gentleman, his contributions to the court system were admired and respected, especially in matters involving child welfare, family Law and Orphans Court matters.  During his tenure as President Judge, he led our court with grace and distinction.”

Judge Hoover had been battling an illness for over a year and retired from the Dauphin County bench on June 3, 2016.

“We lost a part of our county family,” said Dauphin County Board of Commissioners’ Chairman Jeff Haste. “He will be remembered for his genuine compassion and commitment as a judge, particularly when it came to cases involving children and families. On a personal level, Todd was like a brother to me. We shared countless conversations about our families and struggles as fathers over the years, not to mention having a lot of good times coaching soccer together. He was a remarkable man and will be greatly missed.”

Haste added, “We extend our deepest sympathies and prayers to the Hoover family.”

Dauphin County Commissioner Mike Pries also spoke of Judge Hoover’s character.

“As a judge, he was always thoughtful and fair – qualities we all admired,” said Pries. “We were so fortunate to have him serving Dauphin County. He will, no doubt, be remembered as a very kind, caring man and a great friend to many.”

Dauphin County Commissioner George P. Hartwick, III also acknowledged Judge Hoover’s tremendous impact at the county.

“I’ve never met a more committed public servant or man of faith than Judge Hoover,” said Hartwick.  “Through the years, he has provided unconditional support and spiritual guidance to me. He’s a man of extraordinary character and conviction, and will be sorely missed at the county.”

Judge Hoover was elected in November 1993 and was retained in November 2003.  He served as President Judge from 2010-2014.  Judge Hoover presided over all areas but concentrated on Orphans’ Court and criminal matters.  He also oversaw the Dauphin County Grand Jury.

He was a frequent guest lecturer at Widener Law School and Temple University.  He spoke at State and National conferences on the use of Family Group Decision Making as an alternative sentencing practice for juvenile delinquent and adult offenders.

Under the leadership of Judge Hoover and in conjunction with the Dauphin County Bar Association, the Pro Bono Guardianship Monitoring Program was established in Dauphin County to assist the Court in its obligation to oversee all guardianships.

He served as Co-Chair of the Supreme Court Constable Handbook Committee (2011), Chair of the Supreme Court Juvenile Court Procedural Rules Committee (2012) and was a member of the Supreme Court Statewide Committee on Elder Abuse (2013).

Judge Hoover received the Pennsylvania Bar Association Pro Bono Judge Award in 2008.

Judge Hoover was a graduate of Indiana University and the Delaware Law School.  He served as a Dauphin County Deputy District Attorney from 1979-1983 and was a Solo Practitioner from 1983-1993 and served during this time as Special Counsel to the Dauphin County Domestic Relations Office, as a part-time Dauphin County Divorce Master and as a Pennsylvania State Police Court Martial Board Solicitor.