Blogger's Note: Another outstanding judicial candidate has sent an announcement prepared by his campaign,, which you can read below.
Tom Caffrey, the Lehigh County Solicitor, is seeking to fill one of the three judicial vacancies in Lehigh County.
Caffrey, 59, was born and raised in Allentown’s working-class First Ward. After graduating from Allentown Central Catholic High School, the Pennsylvania State University, and the Dickinson School of Law, Caffrey started his legal career as an assistant solicitor in the Lehigh County Department of Law.
In 1991, Caffrey was appointed to serve as the full-time Lehigh County Juvenile Master. He conducted delinquency hearings related to criminal conduct by juveniles and dependency hearings related to issues of parental neglect and child abuse, and earned a reputation for being tough but fair. Caffrey not only gained valuable judicial experience, but also significant insight into the underlying issues—poverty, parental neglect, drug abuse, and mental illness—that often lead to ongoing involvement in the criminal justice system.
In 1998, Caffrey was appointed to serve as a prosecutor in the Lehigh County District Attorney’s Office. He prosecuted defendants charged with felony criminal offenses such as burglary, aggravated assault, and robbery, and tried many of these cases to verdict.
From 2001 through 2004, Caffrey headed the Children and Youth Services Legal Unit. Caffrey returned to the Department of Law in 2004, and litigated the County’s most significant federal civil rights cases, often representing the County’s corrections officers and law enforcement personnel.
In May 2020, Caffrey was elevated to serve as the Lehigh County Solicitor. He now heads the Department of Law, which consists of ten attorneys, two paralegals, and the Right-to-Know Officer, and advises County officials on the wide array of legal matters impacting County government and its residents.
Caffrey has also proudly worked in several capacities for the City of Allentown. He is currently the solicitor to the Police and Fire Civil Service Board, and in the past served as special solicitor to the Police Pension Board in disability pension matters and special solicitor to City Council in police officer termination cases. He also represented the City’s police officers in federal civil rights litigation.
In his private practice, Caffrey has handled a wide variety of legal matters while working for local law firms and operating his own law practice, including family law, employment, criminal defense, land use and zoning, real estate, and wills and estates, and has significant civil litigation 2 experience. He currently serves as the solicitor to the zoning hearing boards in Moore, Lehigh and Plainfield Townships and Hellertown Borough.
When asked why he is seeking a seat on the Lehigh County bench, Caffrey said, “I have dedicated my career to serving the people of Lehigh County, and I believe that I am well qualified to serve as a common pleas judge. I have valuable experience as a judicial official and more than 34 years of experience in both civil and criminal law. I have the academic ability and experience to handle complex legal matters, but also the common sense required to understand and deal with the wide variety of issues and problems that come before a common pleas judge on a daily basis. I will work hard, maintain an open mind, and treat all those who come before me fairly and with respect.”
Caffrey has worked as an adjunct professor of sociology/criminal justice for Moravian College and served as a guest lecturer on federal civil rights and juvenile justice issues. Caffrey is married to Bobbi Jo Caffrey, who works as an optician for Dr. Binae Karpo. They live in Whitehall and are members of the Immaculate Conception Church in Allentown. Caffrey has three adult daughters, Kate, Kristen, and Lauren Angela, and an adult step-son, Scott.
Caffrey has served as a volunteer at the Lehigh Valley Hospital and is a member of the Whitehall Area Rotary Club.
Caffrey, a Republican, will cross file to appear on both parties’ ballots.