The Honorable Dwayne D. Woodruff is a Judge on the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County – Pittsburgh, presiding primarily in the Family Court Division since 2005.
Woodruff earned a degree in Business Finance from the University of Louisville (1979) and a Juris Doctor from Duquesne University School of Law (1988), which he attended, full time at night during his professional football career with the Pittsburgh Steelers – played 12 seasons, including playing in Super Bowl XIV as a rookie in 1980, being named Steelers MVP in 1982 and serving as team captain his final three seasons.
Dwayne’s Dual Career
Woodruff has the unprecedented, dual career distinction in professional sports; simultaneously practicing law with the Meyer Darragh firm and playing football for the Pittsburgh Steelers for three years from 1988 to 1990. In 1997, he became a founding partner of Woodruff Flaherty law firm; later Woodruff Flaherty & Fardo.
Dwayne’s Judicial Tenure
Judge Woodruff currently serves on the board of the National Commission of Juvenile and Family Court Judges and the Allegheny County Jail Oversight Board, co-chairs Pittsburgh SAFE Workgroup (Shared Accountability for Education) and serves on Educational Success & Truancy Prevention Committee (ESTP). Additionally, Judge Woodruff co-chairs the National Campaign to Stop Violence’s “Do the Write Thing Challenge”—a unique initiative which gives middle school students the opportunity to communicate their thoughts on the impact of violence in their lives and to make personal commitments to reduce violence.
He previously served as Vice-Chair of the PA Juvenile Court Procedural Rules Committee, a member of the prestigious PA Juvenile Court Judges’ Commission; as chairman of Pittsburgh Interbranch Commission of Juvenile Justice, and was one of four PA Judges appointed by the PA Supreme Court to the Interbranch Commission on Juvenile Justice, tasked with making recommendations to the state following the Luzerne County “kids for cash” scandal.
Woodruff is also a past elected member of the Pennsylvania House of Delegates and maintains memberships on the Allegheny County and Pennsylvania Bar Associations. Additionally, Judge Woodruff receives great pleasure presiding over CYF (Children Youth & Families) adoptions in his courtroom and considers it a privilege to be in a position to give guidance to youth, especially the young Black males who come before him in court. He feels his work with youth is a calling with responsibilities that don’t end with the job.
Committed to Family
Most significant among Woodruff’s many blessings are his marriage of 38 years to Joy Maxberry Woodruff and his three young adult children—Jillian Woodruff, MD, an Ob/Gyn medical doctor; Jenyce M. Woodruff, Esq., an attorney; and John B. Woodruff, II, Esq., an attorney and captain in the United States Marines. Woodruff and his family worship at Allegheny Center Alliance Church where he has served as an Elder, Growth Group Facilitator and a Marriage Ministry Mentor.
Committed to the Community
Woodruff’s community affiliates include the Urban League of Greater Pittsburgh (Chair), NFL Players Alumni Association (Vice President) and a United Way of Allegheny County board member. He is also a member of Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity and the NAACP (lifetime). He formerly served the Urban Impact Foundation, American Cancer Society (Chairman of the Board), Board of Governors at Duquesne University Law School, Duquesne University Law Challenge for NEED (Chairman), Child Watch, American Red Cross and was an elected member of the Allegheny County Bar Association Judiciary Committee.
Honoring Dwayne’s Work
Among Woodruff’s honors are: University of Louisville’s “WOODRUFF ACADEMIC CENTER,” dedicated in his honor on November 2, 2006; Juvenile Court Judges’ Commission “Outstanding Leadership Award” (Nov. 2015); Mel Blount Youth Home Award (April 2015), HCEF “Champion for Children Award” (March 2015); WHIRL Magazine “Couples Who Make a Difference” (February 2014); Kentucky Athletic Hall of Fame (June 2013); “Leather Helmet Award” by the Minor Pro Football Hall of Fame (May 2013); 2012 “Chairman Award” by Small Seeds Development, Inc.; 2012 NAACP Pittsburgh – Homer S. Brown Award for Legal Service; the Steelers Alumni 2011 “Old Ranger Memorial Award” for Community Service; UPMC 2011 “Community Champion Award” for DtWT; 2011 Philadelphia Legal Intelligencer Diverse Attorney Award; 2010 Life’s Work Career Achievement Award; 2010 Three Rivers Youth Hall of Fame Award; 2009 Pittsburgh Courier Man of Excellence Award; 2007 Duquesne University Law Alumni Outstanding Achievement Award; Talk Magazine Salute for Achievement; and The North Hills Monthly Magazine “Mover and Shaker of the Month” (August 2006).