Charles “Chuck” Gaza is running for Judge on the Court of Common Pleas for Chester County. He is a veteran of both the United States Army and the United State Air Force. He is currently the Chief of Staff for the Chester County District Attorney’s Office and has over two decades of legal experience in both Civil and Criminal Courts. He is one of two candidates on the ballot for judge who was voted qualified by the Chester County Bar Association. His commitment, experience, and public service make him an outstanding candidate for judge.
Chuck entered the United States Army Reserve immediately upon graduation from high school at age 17. While serving as a non-commissioned officer in an artillery unit, Chuck also attended college and law school. A graduate of Pennsylvania State University and the University of Pittsburgh School of Law, Chuck started his legal career with the Judge Advocate General’s (“JAG”) Office for the United States Air Force. As a Captain in the Air Force, Chuck served as the Chief of Military Justice for the 6th Air Refueling Wing and as a Special Assistant United States Attorney for the Department of Justice. Later, he served as the Area Defense Counsel for the Air Force Legal Services Agency in Washington D.C.
In 2001, Chuck returned to his home state of Pennsylvania and served as an Assistant District Attorney in the Chester County District Attorney’s Office. In 2008, he left the District Attorney’s Office and worked as a solo practioner in Kennett Square until returning to the District Attorney’s Office in 2012.
Since returning to the DA’s Office, Chuck has been the Chief of Staff handling the daily management of major case investigations, supervising the specialized prosecution units and acting as the liaison between the DA’s Office and the 46 municipal and state police departments in Chester County. During his 22 years practicing law, Chuck has tried over 75 jury trials covering everything from Homicide to DUI.
For the last seven years Chuck has focused on fighting the opioid epidemic that has hit our county. In addition to overseeing the Drug and Organized Crime Unit in the District Attorney’s Office, he has worked with several community-based organizations to raise awareness about the opioid epidemic and what we can do as a community to combat it. Through the District Attorney’s Office, Chuck has worked on several projects to help reduce the number of opioid related deaths in Chester County including: working with police departments and private companies to secure funding for prescription drug drop boxes that are placed throughout Chester County, helping to secure funding for Narcan for all first responders in Chester County, and running educational programs for school students. Chuck also oversees the diversionary programs for the District Attorney’s Office. These programs identify and supervise defendants with substance abuse or mental health issues. The focus is on treating underlying mental health or substance abuse issues that lead these defendants to commit crimes. He is also a member of the Chester County Opioid Task Force.
Chuck has been married to his lovely wife, Anne Shea Gaza, since 1997. They have two children, Kaelyn (18) and Zack (16).