Richard Cappelli graduated from Widener University School of Law in 1981 and has maintained a private law practice concentrating in Personal Injury, Wills and Estates as well as business counseling since that time. In 1982, he was appointed as the first full time Child Advocate in Delaware County. As a Child Advocate, he created the Special Prosecution Unit for the Delaware County District Attorney’s Office for the investigation and prosecution of child abuse cases, the first of its kind in the State of Pennsylvania.
From 1985 to 1992, he served as court-appointed master in Juvenile Court presiding over thousands of juvenile cases. He also served as Municipal Solicitor for Trainer Borough as well as Zoning Solicitor for both Aston Township and Yeadon Borough.
He has sat as a Director of the Delaware County Bar Association and has served on the Municipal Solicitors Committee and District Justice Committee.
Judge Cappelli currently sits as Magisterial District Judge in Delaware County serving the townships of Concord, Bethel, Chadds Ford and Thornbury. He has been an active member of the Judiciary since his appointment in 1992. In 1993, he was elected President of the Delaware County District Judges Association. Shortly thereafter he was elected president of District Eleven of the Special Court Judges Association of Pennsylvania and was then elected Vice President of the State Association and subsequently President of the Special Court Judges Association of Pennsylvania (“SCJAP”), in 2003.
Cappelli serves as District Director for District Eleven of the SCJAP and serves as the Legislative Committee Member for his district. He has served on the Ethics Committee as Chairman as well as Co-chairman. He has served on the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency, Sub-Committee STOP Violence Against Woman. He has also served as the liaison to the Pennsylvania Bar Association for the past five years.
Cappelli co-authored and edited the Bench Book for Magisterial District Judges now in it fifth edition. He has moderated numerous orientation and education programs for new judges and has lectured at a number of CLE programs on the practice before the District Courts.
He is a member of the Delaware County Criminal Justice Advisory Committee and is a on the board of the Delaware County Justinian Society. Currently he is a member of the Widener University School of Law Alumni Board. He is also an Honorary Lifetime Member in the Pennsylvania State Constables Association.
Most recently, Richard Cappelli was presented with the Themis Award of the Special Court Judges Association of Pennsylvania, for his work and accomplishments on behalf of that organization. Cappelli has also received the Outstanding Service Award from Widener University School of Law Alumni Association, in recognition of his dedication and service to the legal community. The Columbus Memorial Association also named Judge Cappelli ‘Person of the Year’.
In 1973, Judge Cappelli graduated from Salesianum High School, Wilmington DE,. He continued his studies at St. Francis University, in Loretto, PA, attaining a Bachelor of Science degree in Economics. Thereafter, between 1977 and 1978 he was an assistant administrator in the Criminal Court Administrator’s Office of Delaware County. He then attended law school at The Widener University School of Law (formerly The Delaware Law School of Widener University), Wilmington, DE, where he earned his Juris Doctor degree in 1981. Upon passing the bar exam in October, 1981, Judge Cappelli was admitted to the practice of law in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
Judge Cappelli is admitted to practice before The United States Supreme Court, The United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania and all other courts of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
Judge Cappelli is married to Cindy Cappelli with whom he is celebrating twenty five years of marriage and they are the proud parents of two children, Andrew and Amy.