‘The real McCoy’: Greensburg native appointed acting Pa. attorney general

More than three decades ago, Michelle Henry, 53, was walking the halls of Greensburg Salem High School with her classmates.

This week, the Greensburg native was named acting Pennsylvania attorney general.

After graduating from high school and Allegheny College, Henry headed east to attend the Widener University School of Law, serving as a clerk for former Lancaster County President Judge Michael Georgelis.

Just a few years later , she was working as an intern with the Westmoreland County District Attorney’s Office.

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John Driscoll, retired county district attorney and county judge, remembers the first day Henry walked into his office to start her internship.

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“She was cordial, studious and diligent,” Driscoll said. “We all thought she was a fine person to have working in our office.”

The next time Driscoll saw her, she had made her way to the Bucks County District Attorney’s Office, where she served as chief of the office’s child abuse and major crimes departments, as well as first assistant district attorney.

“She was on TV, giving interviews about having conducted all of these high-profile prosecutions,” Driscoll said.

Eventually, Henry came to serve as first deputy attorney general under Josh Shapiro. She was responsible for overseeing all of the office’s legal matters, including criminal cases, civil suits representing the state, and public protection cases fighting for the rights of consumers.

With Shapiro stepping into the governor’s mansion this week, Henry takes the reins as the state’s top law enforcement official.

“We’re not surprised,” Driscoll said of himself and legal colleagues in Western Pennsylvania. “She’s the real McCoy — a forthright prosecutor. Justice in Pennsylvania is in good hands with her.

“I would not want to be prosecuted by Michelle Henry,” Driscoll said with a laugh.

Patrick Varine is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Patrick by email at pvarine@triblive.com or via Twitter .

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