James J. Ross was born in New Brighton, Pennsylvania on June 4, 1954. He is married and father of two adult children.
Judge Ross graduated from Baldwin Wallace College in Berea, Ohio in 1976. He went on to earn a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville in 1977. In November, 1980, Judge Ross acquired the degree of Juris Doctor from Ohio Northern University in Ada, Ohio. During his law school career, he served as the Editor-in-Chief of the Ohio Northern University Law Review.
After graduation, Judge Ross served as a Law Clerk in the United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania to Judge Alan N. Bloch from 1982 through 1984. He also served as an Assistant United States Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania, during which time he prosecuted organized crime and narcotics cases in Pittsburgh from 1984 through 1987 and thereafter served as the Chief of the Erie Division from 1988 through early 1991.
From early 1991 through December, 2013, Judge Ross was a partner in the law firm of Bowers, Ross & Fawcett and extensively litigated both plaintiffs’ personal injury claims and criminal defense cases.
In November, 2013, Judge Ross was elected as Judge of the Court of Common Pleas of Beaver County to a ten-year term. He was sworn-in on January 3, 2014.
Judge Ross has also been involved with numerous civic and legal entities, including serving as a member of the Civil Justice Advisory Group to the United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania, which advised the Court on the efficient and cost-effective management of civil litigation. He was appointed by the United States District Court to the Merit Selection Committee to review candidates and recommend finalists for the position of United States Magistrate Judge. Judge Ross also served as President of the Beaver County Bar Association in 2007-2008.