Judge Sterling R. Schrock, known to friends and acquaintances by the nickname Pete, has been a resident of Berrien County since 1983. Born in Illinois, he grew up in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and attended Northern Michigan University, graduating in 1974. He went on to the John Marshall Law School in Chicago, Illinois, graduated in 1977, and was admitted to practice law in both Illinois and Michigan.
Judge Schrock came to the bench after practicing law for 31 years. His legal career began in the United States Navy Judge Advocate Generals Corps where he served at duty stations in San Diego, California and Great Lakes, Illinois. After completing his service in the United States Navy, he joined the Macon County Illinois States Attorneys Office and eventually moved to Berrien County when he became an Assistant Prosecuting Attorney here.
In 1988, Judge Schrock became a member of the law firm of Straub, Seaman and Allen where he practiced insurance defense law for ten years. He then joined the Smit and Kragt law firm where he represented plaintiffs in workers compensation and social security disability cases until his appointment to the bench in 2008.
Judge Schrock currently serves as the Presiding Judge of the Criminal Division of the Berrien County Trial Court.
Judge Schrock is a member of the State Bar of Michigan, the Berrien County Bar Association, the Michigan District Judges Association, the National Association of Drug Court Professionals, and serves on the State of Michigan Mental Health Court Advisory Board. He has been a presenter at Michigan Judicial Institute trainings and consults regularly on issues related to the State of Michigan's Swift and Sure Sanctions Program.