John Paul Plante was born in La Crosse, Wisconsin and grew up in Phoenix, Arizona where he attended Central High School. He graduated magna cum laude from Princeton University majoring in economics. He graduated with high honors from the University of Arizona Law School. Judge Plante has been a Yuma resident since 1978. He practiced law for 22 years prior to becoming a judge.
He was appointed as a full time Judge Pro Tempore by the Honorable Tom C. Cole in July 1999 and served in that position until his election as a Superior Court Judge in 2006. Judge Plante was re-elected in 2010. He continues to live in Yuma with his wife Maria. His children are Mary Plante, the drama teacher at Gila Ridge high school, and Jeremy Plante, a border patrol agent. Judge Plante is a Christian, an honorary lifetime member of Yuma Community Theater, and a referee for USA Swimming and high school swimming. His interests include economics, government, swimming, tennis, reading, theater, the Spanish language, and the law.