Alicia Zito is the incumbent, but not as a result of an election. She was appointed. She is an attorney who served as a Judicial Law Clerk in Northampton County and on the Superior Court. She also contributed to a benchbook for magisterial district judges. The other candidates include Colonial Regional police officer Cody Hendershot, Monroe County Assistant Public Defender Jason Labar, construction manager Tony Labar, Constable Ty Comunale and Easton police officer Dominic Marraccini. All but Marraccini have cross-filed. Marraccini is running on the GOP ballot only.
In her announcement, Fehnel calls herself a single mother with a 10-year-old daughter. A lifelong resident of Pen Argyl, she holds an Associate’s Degree in Criminal Justice from Northampton Community College. She also received her Magisterial District Judge Certification held by the Minor Judiciary Board in Harrisburg, PA.
She describes herself as a person with a "strong work ethic"and who has always held two or three jobs throughout her entire working career. This includes work at Family and Friends Country Restaurant, a Bushkill Township diner that her family owns and operates.
She worked for Criminal Defense Attorney Eric Dowdle in Allentown, preparing trial note books and interviewing defendants. She currently works for Central Booking in Allentown, handling arraignments with Magisterial District Judges and processing. She did work for Magisterial District Judge Doug Schlegel, but was required to resign to run for the position.
I asked her what sets her apart in this crowded field. Why should Slate Belt voters choose her?
"The members of our community should vote me because my temperament has always led me to be fair and open minded. Growing up in a lower income family taught me to use every resource for personal development. It taught me work ethic, persistence, and to strive for goals. This will not be just a job for me but a way to show the hard-working Slate-Belt families that anything is possible if you put your heart and mind to it. I have ideas that I would love to implement with the juveniles that come through the system in the office and show juveniles much more by having a positive influence and be a role model for the juveniles and not just bang the gavel down on them. I would like to work with rehab facilities and animal shelters to set up programs that will help create a positive influence for the teens of our community.If you would like to learn more about Heather Fehnel, please visit https://m.facebook.com/VoteHeatherFehnel/
"My experience sets me aside from the other candidates alone. I have been working with the magisterial district judges in Lehigh County for over 8 years processing all the paperwork for arraignments during night court. I later started working for a Northampton County District Magistrate Judge Schlegel for over 5 years. Secretary’s in that position need as competent as the Judge for the court to run efficiently. I will not only sit on the bench but I will work right alongside with the secretary’s and be a team player."