Tuesday, May 04, 2021

The LuLac Edition #4,511, May 4th, 2021




EDITORS NOTE: LULAC will feature articles on the candidates running for Luzerne County Judge. Prior to this edition we commented on Jim Bobeck’s , Tarah Toohll's and Alexandra Kokura Kravitz’s campaign. We will highlight the other candidates for Judge and then keep all the links up through the campaign for contrast and comparison. 

Laura Dennis is running for Judge of the Common Pleas Court in Luzerne County. She was the very first to put her name out there before people were even thinking about this race. Being the first in, she had to dodge the slings and arrows of the anonymous posters the local newspaper allows. But their negativity only gave her burgeoning candidacy a boost. Dennis has been running a race in unconventional times. Like other candidates in the race, Dennis has had to rely on her network of friends and fellow Attorneys to get the word out about her experience which is varied but solid.

Her recent ad campaign that was designed to increase her name recognition is something that has resonated with people. The ad featuring Dennis the Menace (the cartoon by Hank Ketchum not the actor Jay North) as well as an endorsement from Penguins mainstay Dennis Bonvie emphasizes her last name. As a young girl, Laura recalled that when people asked how to remember her name, she was told by her parents to reference the cartoon character saying, “You know, like Dennis the Menace”. Now to be clear, the Dennis sisters were anything but menaces. I know this first hand since my sister had all three of them (Laura, Lisa and Jaimie) at Wyoming Area Grade school. Will the ad help win her a nomination? To coin an old phrase, “People vote, not ads” but you can be sure it won’t hurt given her Republican opponents Stefanie Salavantis and Tarah Toohill are very well known.

Dennis comes from a family that believes in hard work as well as service. In an open letter to the community she wrote what is essentially her resume. 

Dear Citizens of Luzerne County,

I have been blessed with a successful law practice 23 years. I believe success as an attorney in private practice comes from the ability to effectively litigate all types of cases, while being able to earn your client’s trust and confidence during some of the worst times of their lives. One of the benefits of practicing in a small town is that my clients are very often my neighbors. It is important to me to be a part of my community. This is where I was born and raised and this is where I am raising my own family. To me, you cannot know what goes on in courtroom unless you are there doing it. I do not think the first time someone watches a jury being chosen should be from the Judge’s bench. Being in a courtroom has allowed me the opportunity experience the practice of law firsthand. As a lawyer, arguing cases, presenting petitions and motions, negotiating on behalf of a client, these are all things that are not learned in a book. At 47 years of age, I am proud of the work I have done for clients the past 23 years. I can confidently tell the voters in Luzerne County that I have learned as much from practicing law since 1998, as I have from appearing in front of Judges who were as knowledgeable in the law, as they were at skilled at successfully guiding litigants to resolve their cases based on their years of experience. As an arbitrator, I have heard cases In the Luzerne County Court of Common Pleas that had damages up to $50,000.00. As a Special Master in Divorce, I have dealt with complex finance and real estate issues. I know the importance of applying the law in a fair and equitable way, but just as important is giving everyone the opportunity to be heard and being respectful. I believe that together we can maintain the integrity our of Courts. I am asking for your vote and your support.

My Experience:

23 years experience in the private practice of law representing clients in all courts: Civil, Criminal, Family, Juvenile and Orphan’s Courts

Assistant Solicitor, Luzerne County Office of Law

Solicitor, Wyoming Borough

Adjunct Professor of Law Courses in Undergraduate business and MBA and Organizational Management Graduate programs, Misericordia University

Arbitrator: Luzerne County Arbitration Panel

Previously served as a Special Master in Divorce

Awards and Acknowledgements:

Times Leader Top 40 under 40

Greater Pittston Best Attorney 2020, by the Sunday Dispatch

Trademark National Women of Distinction in Business

Member:  Luzerne County Bar Association

Juvenile Defender’s Association of Pennsylvania

Junior League of Wilkes-Barre

Greater Pittston Chamber of Commerce, Women’s Network

Corpus Christi Parish

Dennis has never run for political office before. But her candor, down to earth personality coupled with her experience has impressed voters we spoke to about the race. The key now for her is to get those supporters to the polls, whether it be by mailbox or in person. Like all the other candidates, Dennis can cross file on both tickets. 


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