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Heidi R. Freese


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Tucker Arensberg Welcomes Accomplished Attorney Heidi R. Freese to the Firm as a Shareholder

PITTSBURGH, PA, July 10, 2024. The law firm of Tucker Arensberg, P.C., one of the premier law firms in Pittsburgh with offices in Harrisburg, Beaver, Cleveland, New York, and the San Francisco Bay Area*, is pleased to announce that Heidi R. Freese, a distinguished attorney with an extensive background in federal criminal defense, has joined the firm as a Shareholder. Heidi brings a wealth of experience and a proven track record of dedication to the defense of federal criminal defendants.

Heidi Freese was appointed as the Federal Public Defender for the Middle District of Pennsylvania by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit in September 2017 and was reappointed in 2021. During her tenure she managed an independent caseload, oversaw the Middle District’s Criminal Justice Act (CJA) panel, coordinated attorney trainings, and supervised three offices, showcasing her leadership, problem-solving, and management skills. Notably, during her term as the Federal Public Defender, the office litigated two cases before the U.S. Supreme Court during the 2023-2024 term, underscoring her involvement in high-stakes litigation.

Before her appointment as the Federal Public Defender, Heidi served for ten years as an Assistant Federal Public Defender, where she acted as lead counsel in hundreds of federal criminal cases, litigated complex motions, and represented clients and witnesses in all stages of grand jury investigations. Earlier in her career, Heidi was appointed as a Juvenile Delinquency Master for the York County Court of Common Pleas. In this role, she presided over critical juvenile hearings and provided detailed recommendations to the court.

Heidi’s legal expertise extends well beyond the courtroom. She is actively involved in academia at Penn State Dickinson Law, where she contributes as an adjunct professor on Federal Criminal Practice and serves as the Criminal Justice Externship Faculty Advisor, and a regular guest lecturer on a variety of topics. Previously, Heidi also served as the Trial Team Advisor. Additionally, Heidi’s commitment to promoting Diversity & Inclusion within the local and national legal community is evident through her numerous initiatives and contributions.

Heidi’s community service in the sports arena has also inspired her to branch into NIL (Name, Image, Likeness) representation, leveraging her legal skills to support athletes in maximizing their potential.

Heidi is an active member of several professional associations, including the Federal Bar Association, the National Association of Federal Defenders, and the National Association of Public Defenders. She has served on various committees and has been a regular presenter and speaker at legal conferences and seminars.

“Tucker Arensberg is thrilled to welcome Heidi Freese to our team. Her extensive experience and dedication to justice align perfectly with our firm’s mission and values,” said Irving Firman, Managing Shareholder.

“We are excited to have Heidi join our Harrisburg office,” added Jerry Russo, Shareholder-In-Charge. “Her expertise in federal criminal defense and commitment to legal education will be invaluable assets to our clients and our firm.”

Heidi Freese expressed her enthusiasm, stating, “Joining Tucker Arensberg is a wonderful opportunity to continue my advocacy for justice. I am thrilled to bring my unique blend of experience and passion for the law to this esteemed firm.”

About Tucker Arensberg

Tucker Arensberg, P.C. has over 85 attorneys and is headquartered in Pittsburgh, PA with offices in Harrisburg, PA, New York, NY, Cleveland, OH, Beaver, PA, and provides legal services through Tucker Arensberg, L.L.P. with an office in the San Francisco Bay Area*. It is a full-service firm providing service to its clients in the areas of general business law, mergers and acquisitions, labor and employment, insolvency and creditors’ rights, health care, litigation, estates and trusts, school and municipal law, technology and intellectual property, energy, real estate, workers’ compensation, employee benefits, banking, criminal defense, and investment management and fiduciary services. For more information on the firm, please visit

*As Tucker Arensberg, L.L.P.


July 10, 2024

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