For Immediate Release - June 28, 2017

Governor Baker Nominates Frederick Baran to Chicopee District Court

BOSTON – Today, Governor Charlie Baker nominated Frederick R. Baran, Jr. to the position of Clerk Magistrate of the Chicopee District Court. Baran has served as Acting Clerk Magistrate in the Chicopee District Court since July of 2016 and has served in Holyoke District Court as First Assistant Clerk Magistrate since 1990 and Acting Clerk Magistrate since 1996. In addition, Attorney Baran has served as Acting District Court Region VI Coordinator in Holyoke since 2011.

“Frederick Baran has a long history of serving the people of the Commonwealth as a Clerk Magistrate in various District Courts in Western Massachusetts,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “I am pleased to nominate him for the Governor’s Council’s advice and consent. If confirmed, the Chicopee District Court will benefit greatly from his experience, knowledge and wisdom.”

“I am pleased with the nomination of a skilled and well-respected civil servant that is such an active and rooted member of the Hampden County community,” said Lt. Governor Karyn Polito. “I am confident that Attorney Baran’s professional skills developed over more than three decades in the legal system will serve the judges, lawyers and litigants who appear in the Chicopee District Court well."

Judicial nominations are subject to the advice and consent of the Governor’s Council. Applicants for judicial openings are reviewed by the Judicial Nominating Commission (JNC) and recommended to the governor. Governor Baker established the JNC in February, 2015 pursuant to Executive Order 558, a non-partisan, non-political Commission composed of volunteers from a cross-section of the Commonwealth's diverse population to screen judicial applications. Twenty-one members were later appointed to the JNC in April, 2015.

The District Court hears a wide range of criminal, civil, housing, juvenile, mental health, and other types of cases. District Court criminal jurisdiction extends to all felonies punishable by a sentence up to five years, and many other specific felonies with greater potential penalties; all misdemeanors; and all violations of city and town ordinances and by-laws. In civil matters, District Court judges conduct both jury and jury-waived trials, and determine with finality any matter in which the likelihood of recovery does not exceed $25,000. The District Court also tries small claims involving up to $7,000 (initially tried to a magistrate, with a defense right of appeal either to a judge or to a jury). The District Court's civil jurisdiction also includes many specialized proceedings, including abuse prevention restraining orders and civil motor vehicle infractions (tried initially to a magistrate, with right of appeal to a judge).

For more information about the District Court, visit

About Frederick R. Baran, Jr.

Frederick R. Baran, Jr. is the Acting Clerk Magistrate in the Chicopee District Court. Before starting his legal career, Baran was a science teacher at Chestnut Junior High School in Springfield. Practicing eight years as a General Associate for Ducharme, Moriarty & Wilson in Holyoke, Baran was then selected as the First Assistant Clerk Magistrate for the Holyoke District Court in 1990. As the Acting District Court Region VI Coordinator for the District Court since 2011, Baran coordinated assignments for the twelve courts in the region to assure adequate coverage in addition to conducting training and resolving court personnel matters and conflicts. He received his Juris Doctor at Suffolk University Law School in 1982 and his Bachelor of Science in Education from Fitchburg State College in 1977.  He currently resides with his family in Holyoke.


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