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Federal prosecutor from Malta to become new DeKalb County judge

Joe Pedersen
Joe Pedersen

SYCAMORE – One of DeKalb County’s own is going to take over the bench from retiring Judge William Brady of the 23rd Judicial Circuit Court.

Joe Pedersen of Malta, currently with the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Northern District of Illinois in Rockford, will take his new position Aug. 1. He’s worked in Rockford for 17 years and also has time in the DeKalb County State’s Attorney’s Office, having worked there for about six years between 1997 and 2002.

He said he was humbled when he learned he was chosen for the post.

“I’m honored that the circuit judges selected me and put their confidence in me,” Pedersen said. “I’ll prove to them they made the right decision.”

At the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Pedersen said he worked primarily criminal cases, such as fraud and violent crime. He said he was one of the prosecutors of Rita Crundwell, the controller and treasurer from the city of Dixon who pleaded guilty to embezzling more than $50 million from the city over more than 20 years.

Pedersen said he had aspired to be a judge someday, and has come before many who have influenced him.

“Throughout my career, I’ve appeared before many excellent judges,” he said. He said he knows the work is going to be different, from serving as an advocate for someone to mediating.

Pedersen received his undergraduate degree from Northern Illinois University in 1991 and his law degree from University of Iowa in Iowa City in 1995.

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