F. Bruce Bach

The Honorable Fred Bruce Bach was a judge on the benches of both the Fairfax County General District Court and the Circuit Court.

Early life and education

As a teenager, Bach commuted from Arlington to attend St. John's College High School in Washington, D.C., graduating in 1959. He graduated from Wake Forest University in 1963, then took his J.D. at the University of Richmond in 1967.[1]


Following his graduation, Bach was the first assistant Commonwealth's Attorney hired by Robert F. Horan, Jr.[1]

After leaving the Commonwealth's Attorney's Office, Bach entered private practice, becoming a neme partner in the firm of Gilliam, Sanders and Bach, working as a criminal defense attorney.

In January 1972, Bach was appointed to an eight-year term as a substitute judge for the county court by Circuit Court Chief Judge Arthur W. Sinclair.[2]

Bach joined the bench of the General District Court in 1978, and to a newly-created post on the bench of the Circuit Court in June of the following year.[3][4] At the age of 37, Bach was the youngest judge elected to the Circuit Court in nearly 50 years.[4]

In 1994, Judge Bach became Chief Judge of the Circuit Court, and held that position until 2001.[5]

Judge Bach retired from the bench on July 1, 2001.[6]

In 2005, Judge Bach served as the interim Executive Secretary of the Supreme Court of Virginia at the behest of Chief Justice Leroy R. Hassell, Sr.


Bach married Beverly Jean Richel in 1964.

Notable quotes

"Success on the bench requires only two things; gray hair to make you look distinguished, and hemorrhoids to make you look serious." – 1998


  1. 1.0 1.1 Davis, Patricia. "Judge Lays Down Law on the Use of Legalese." The Washington Post. WP Company, 30 June 1994. Web. 17 Dec. 2017.
  2. "Substitute Judges" Evening Star, 4 Jan. 1972, Four Star NIGHT FINAL, p. 20. NewsBank. Accessed 17 Dec. 2017.
  3. "New Judge in Fairfax." Evening Star, 19 Apr. 1978, NIGHT FINAL, p. 75. NewsBank. Accessed 29 Sep. 2018.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Selden, Ina Lee. "Fairfax County District Judge Takes New Post on Circuit Court." The Washington Post (1974-Current file): 1. Jul 05 1979. ProQuest Historical Newspapers: The Washington Post (1877-1996). Web. 21 Nov. 2012.
  5. "Bach Heads Fairfax Circuit Court." The Washington Post (pre-1997 Fulltext): 0. Jun 08 1994. National Newspapers Core. Web. 20 Nov. 2012.
  6. Jackman, Tom. "Judges Shift Places as Bach Nears Retirement; McWeeny is Chosen to Head Circuit Court." The Washington Post: 0. Jun 21 2001. National Newspapers Core. Web. 21 Nov. 2012.

External links

Preceded by
Richard J. Jamborsky
Chief Judge of the Fairfax County Circuit Court
1994 – 2001
Succeeded by
Michael P. McWeeny