Matthew Rambo

Office: Geauga County – Geauga County Common Pleas Court

Age: 39

Residence: Russell Township, OH

Email: matthewrambo4judge@gmail.com

Website: www.ramboforgeauga.com; (Twitter) @rambo_judge; (Facebook) @Rambo4Judge

Occupation: Associate Attorney Collins & Scanlon LLP

Education: B.S. Electrical Engineering The Ohio State University, 2002; J.D. The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law, 2005

Work Experience: Magistrate at the Court of Claims of Ohio 2006-2013, Staff Attorney for Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas, Judge Richard McMonagle 2013-2016, Judge Maureen Clancy 2016-2018

Family: Married with 2 sons

Affiliations: Geauga County Bar Association, Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association, Geauga County Township Association

Endorsements: N/A

Bar Association Ratings: N/A

(1) List your judicial experience (courts and years):

Magistrate of the Court of Claims of Ohio, 2006-2013 Staff Attorney, Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court, 2013-2018

(2) What about your non-judicial legal experience qualifies you to be a judge?

As a Magistrate for the Court of Claims of Ohio for 7 years, I presided over a docket of approximately 125-150 case at any given time. In that capacity, I regularly presided over bench trials and authored hundreds of decisions as a result. I was responsible for the management of my docket, including conducting attorney conferences, issuing case management schedules, making all necessary pretrial orders and rulings. Working at the Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court put me in the trenches of Ohio’s busiest Common Pleas Court. I worked closely with the Judges to resolve cases and manage the civil case docket. I performed all research and writing required during the adjudication of a case and authored decisions of the Court as necessary. I also assisted with criminal proceedings including jury trials and sentencing hearings. In private practice, I have appeared on behalf of clients in the Federal District Court for the Northern District of Ohio, the Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court, the Lake County Common Pleas Court, the Lorain County Common Pleas Court, the Medina County Common Pleas Court, Rocky River Municipal Court, and Willoughby Municipal Court. These cases range from small claims cases and evictions to complex commercial litigation. Working at the Court of Claims and in the Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court has provided me with the experience and knowledge necessary to operate a courtroom and preside over a full docket of criminal and civil cases from the first day I take the bench. It has also allowed me to understand and appreciate how cases should be viewed from a judicial point of view. Working in the private sector has permitted me to hone my skills as an advocate to gain a valuable understanding of the relationships attorneys have with their clients. Having worked as an attorney from both sides of the bench has given me a broader view of the legal system that would be invaluable to me as a judge and makes me uniquely qualified to serve Geauga County as its Common Pleas Judge.

(3) Why are you running for this particular court seat?

I am running for Geauga County Court of Common Pleas because I want to serve the community in which my family and I live. My experience as a magistrate and in the common pleas court will allow me to smoothly transition to the Common Pleas bench. This sets me apart from my opponents in this race because I am the only candidate with judicial experience. I joined the Court of Claims of Ohio directly after passing the Ohio Bar and was shortly thereafter promoted to Magistrate of the Court and assigned a docket that required me to manage cases from filing to resolution. I have presided over hearings and bench trials and authored hundreds of opinions. After seven years serving the Court of Claims in that capacity I joined the Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court which put me “in the trenches” of the practice of law at the trial level and I worked closely with two different Common Pleas Judges to manage both criminal and civil dockets. I will draw on this experience to fairly and efficiently administer justice from the bench in Geauga County. I am confident in stating that I am the most qualified candidate in this race. Combined with my age, taking the bench now gives me the opportunity to ensure that Geauga County remains a wonderful place to live, all while being accountable to the voters. Our country is facing an Opioid Crisis, and Geauga County has felt the troubling effects of these insidious drugs flooding the streets. When elected, I will employ Specialized Dockets as outlined by the Supreme Court of Ohio to combat the opioid and addiction issues we face in Geauga County. I will work with law enforcement, mental health agencies and treatment facilities in the county to hold people accountable for their actions and ensure efficiency among everyone involved. Studies have shown that utilizing treatment over jail in the right cases saves the County money in the long run. Funding for a specialized docket, whether it be a mental health court, a veteran’s court or a drug court can be obtained from the state and federal level. The Ohio Supreme Court has taken the lead in this fight, Geauga County must join it. Serving Geauga County as Common Pleas Judge is my way of investing in the welfare and safety of my family and of Geauga County as a whole.

Michael A. Hiener

Office: Ashtabula County – Ashtabula Eastern County Court

Age: 59

Residence: Dorset, OH

Email: michaelhiener1959@gmail.com

Website: www.electhiener.com; Facebook @electhiener

Occupation: Attorney, Denmark Township Trustee, Owner Peters Creek Farm, Ltd.

Education: B.S. 1983, J.D. 1986 both from The Ohio State University

Work Experience: Associate at Smith and Hiener, Sidney Municipal Prosecutor in Sidney, Ohio. Litigation Associate Wuliger Fadel and Beyer in Cleveland, Ohio. Partner Bates, Hiener and Vince in Madison, Ohio. Solo practice Jefferson, Ohio.

Family: Married 29 years to Dr. Diane Veale, Jefferson veterinarian.

Affiliations: Member of Board of Directors of the Ashtabula County Farm Bureau. Co-founder of the Ashtabula County Bridge Street Farmers Market. Member of the Ashtabula County Bar Association and the Ohio State Bar Association.

Endorsements: N/A

Bar Association Ratings: N/A

(1) List your judicial experience (courts and years):

Former arbitration chairman in Lake County Ohio. 18 years experience Acting Judge in both the Eastern and Western Ashtabula County Courts. I served as Acting Judge 5 weeks in 2017 and 4 weeks so far in 2018. I have served in both courts on the same day, one in the morning, the other in the afternoon.

(2) What about your non-judicial legal experience qualifies you to be a judge?

I have had a well balanced practice in my career. I have been both prosecutor and defense attorney handling bench and jury trials. I have experience in civil and criminal cases and I have been accepted as an attorney on the Roster of Attorneys for the Eleventh District Court of Appeals where I have freed people who were wrongfully convicted. I have represented clients in the State of Ohio Courts including the Ohio Supreme Court and the Federal Courts both at the trial level and in the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. But the most important aspect of my experience is learning about the human condition. Not every person who is in court is the next Charles Manson. While we do see our share of truly bad actors, like multiple drunk driving offenders, who must be dealt with severely, we often deal with decent people in bad circumstances. We may see a person charged with driving with a suspended license because his auto insurance lapsed when he was laid off work. Instead of “throwing the book” at him we will have the Court’s probation department work with him to get his driver’s license reinstated and make sure he is insured. Then the defendant will be offered a pleas bargain with a fine and court costs to pay. He has been punished but more importantly we now have a licensed, insured driver on the road. My life’s experience and legal experience allow me to tell the difference between bad people and people in a bad way.

(3) Why are you running for this particular court seat?

I enjoy the intellectual challenge that comes with being a judge. Applying the law to a set of facts can be like putting a puzzle together. There is a sense of satisfaction once the puzzle has been put together and a ruling has been made. Judges do some things that are just fun to do. I have always enjoyed performing wedding ceremonies, seeing joy in peoples faces when they hear “I now pronounce you husband and wife”. (It’s the only time I can give a life sentence.) The courts at this level are good problem solving courts, as my example above shows. Finally, I wish to serve my community by helping people we can help or protecting people from those who wish to do them harm.

John T. Wallace

Office: Hocking County – Hocking County Common Pleas Court

Age: 62

Residence: Logan, OH

Email: N/A

Website: Judge John T Wallace on Facebook

Occupation: Common Pleas Judge

Education: J.D. Cleveland-Marshall College of Law

Work Experience: Attorney for 32 years, Municipal Court Judge for 4 years, Common Pleas Judge for 7 years

Family: Married with 2 adult sons

Affiliations: Kiwanis, Boy Scouts of America, Knights of Columbus, Catholic

Endorsements: N/A

Bar Association Ratings: N/A

(1) List your judicial experience (courts and years):

I began my service as a judge in the Hocking County Municipal Court in December 2006. In the Municipal Court, I presided over about 10 jury trials, and many bench trials. I also presided over the resolution of thousands of cases. I was appointed to the Hocking County Common Pleas Court in July 2011, and was elected in November 2012. Since I became Common Pleas Court judge, I have presided over more than 30 jury trials, dozens of bench trials, and seen thousands of other cases to resolution. I have presided over two aggravated murder trials with death penalty specifications, two other aggravated murder trials, one attempted murder trial, and several sex crime cases. I have also presided over a number of civil jury trials including a medical malpractice case.

(2) What about your non-judicial legal experience qualifies you to be a judge?

Prior to becoming judge, I spent 20 years in private practice. My experience has been in the areas of criminal law, domestic relations, insurance defense, probate, real estate, and many other fields. I have also handled many cases in the Ohio Court of Appeals and have presented a case in the U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals.

(3) Why are you running for this particular court seat?

Serving the people of Hocking County, first as a Municipal Court judge and now as Common Pleas Court judge, has been a great honor. The office of judge is also a tremendous responsibility. As judge, I am tasked with assuring that all parties in the court are treated fairly. I believe that writing concise and detailed orders is important because explanations of reasoning makes it more likely that people will understand the fairness of the court’s decision. It has been my great pleasure to start the Hocking County Common Pleas Court’s Drug Court. At any one time, my team and I help 15 to 20 people become and remain clean and sober. We have enjoyed great success with many people reuniting with their families, becoming employed, and becoming contributing members of our community. I have successfully pursued a large number of private, state, and federal grants that have funded the Drug Court, improved security at the Hocking County Courthouse, and allowed us to purchase a new case management system for the Clerk of Courts’ office. I will continue to look for further funding opportunities to improve the operations of the Common Pleas Court.

Monica Hawkins

Office: Franklin County – Franklin County Court of Common Pleas Domestic Division and Juvenile Branch

Age: 53

Residence: Columbus, OH

Email: N/A

Website: ElectMonicaHawkinsforJudge.com; @ElectHawkins – Twitter; @ElectMonicaHawkins – Facebook

Occupation: Assistant Prosecutor, Columbus City Attorney’s Office

Education: J.D. Capital University Law School; M.S. Education Dayton University; B.A. Criminal Justice The Ohio State University

Work Experience: 30 year public service experience; over 24 years employed at Franklin County Children Services, 12 years as a Child Welfare Caseworker, over 12 years as a Senior Trial Attorney working specifically in Franklin County Court of Common Pleas Domestic Division and Juvenile Branch, extensive litigation experience, over 50 trials, termination of parental rights, safe haven, custody, abuse, neglect, and dependency cases, contempt hearings, annual reviews, and various motion hearings and complaints. Argued before the 10th District Court of Appeals; Federal Public Defender’s Office, Capital Habeas Unit, Investigator; Children’s Hospital Substance Abuse Counselor; Law Clerk in a Domestic Relations Firm; City of Columbus

Family: Single – One adult son (and wife), 3 grandchildren

Affiliations: Non-denominational

Endorsements: Franklin County Democratic Party, Franklin County Young Democrats, Franklin County Adelante Democrats, Baptist Ministerial Alliance of Columbus and Vicinity, Columbus Firefighters Union Local 67, Columbus & Central Ohio Building and Construction Trades Council, Central Labor Council, AFL-CIO, A. Philip Randolph Institute, Coalition of Black Trade Unionists, Coalition of Labor Women, FCCEA, Ohio AFSCME Council 8, Plummers and Pipefitters Local 189, Stonewall Democrats, Teachers for Better Schools

Bar Association Ratings: N/A

(1) List your judicial experience (courts and years):

I currently serve as an Assistant Prosecutor for the Columbus City Attorney’s Office in Franklin County Municipal Court Environmental Court. I also served Senior Trial Attorney, Franklin County Children Services in Franklin County Court of Common Pleas Domestic Division and Juvenile Branch 2000-2012. I have over 24 years of experience working in the Domestic Division and Juvenile Branch. I have extensive trial court experience, I litigation numerous trials, and cases included termination of parental rights trials, safe haven, custody, contempt hearings, shelter care hearings, motion hearings, review hearings, and various motion hearings. I have also served in delinquency cases, state administrative hearings, and adoption proceedings in Probate Court. I argued before the 10th District Court of Appeals. I served as a law clerk in a Domestic Relations firm.

(2) What about your non-judicial legal experience qualifies you to be a judge?

I served as a Child Welfare Caseworker at Franklin County Children Services, specifically in Franklin County Court of Common Pleas Domestic Division and Juvenile Branch where I served children and families throughout our County. I provided services to Abused, Neglected, Dependent, and Unruly children, worked with families suffering from poverty, mental health issues, psychological issues, substance abuse issues, educational neglect, domestic violence, violence against children, and a multitude of issues and matters relating to children and families. I have served as an Investigator with the Office of the Federal Public Defender’s Office, Southern District of Ohio where I was assigned to the Capital Habeas Unit and worked with clients/inmates on death row. In this role, I utilized my experiences in social work, trial advocacy, and my unique interpersonal and relation building skills to develop trust and confidence of the client, client’s families, and the victim’s families. Through these cases, I aided in legal strategy, evidence gathering, and research. More importantly, this work demonstrates my unique interpersonal skills, partnered with a multi-faceted perspective, that are needed in the courtroom as a protector of justice, fairness, and integrity. I am well-versed with the court’s specialty dockets and I have completed extensive mediation training. I was certified by the Children’s Hospital Child Advocacy Center in child interviewing skills. I have extensive experience working with a population riddled with substance abuse, mental health disabilities, violence, poverty, and lack of resources. These victims are often in crisis and I have always treated each individual with mutual respect and dignity, I have acted with compassion, diplomacy, and human compassion. I know I possess the judicial temperament to effectively serve the public.

(3) Why are you running for this particular court seat?

I am a life-long resident and public servant who possesses the education, experience, temperament, and skill set to serve in the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas Domestic Division and Juvenile Branch. I have demonstrated my commitment to our community both professionally and personally, I have been involved in numerous organizations and professional groups to effect positive change in our community and in the lives of children and families. I possess the compassion provide exemplary public serve to all. I have maintained civility and exercised diplomacy both inside and outside the courtroom. I have treated families with fairness, including sensitive to diversity, freedom from bias, and with impartiality. I have a passion to secure safe communities, preserve the family unit, protect children, and provide alternatives while preserving communal integrity. I have been honored to serve families in this community for decades, and I would be honored to continue my service as a Judge.

James W. Brown

Office: Franklin County – Franklin County Court of Common Pleas Division of Domestic Relations and Juvenile Branch

Age: 60

Residence: Columbus, OH

Email: vote4jamesbrown@gmail.com

Website: www.vote4jamesbrown.com; https://www.facebook.com/James-W-Brown-for-Judge-648854168539986/

Occupation: Judge on the bench of the Franklin County, Ohio Court of Common Pleas Division of Domestic Relations and Juvenile Court

Education: The Ohio State University, B.A. 1979, J.D. 1982

Work Experience: Sole practitioner from 1982-2014 representing clients in family law matters throughout Ohio

Family: Married with two adult children

Affiliations: Non-denominational

Endorsements: AFSCME Ohio Council #8; Baptist Ministerial Alliance; Coalition of Black Trade Unionists; Columbus Building Trades Council; Columbus Fire Fighters Union, Local 67; Franklin County Council of Education Associations; Fraternal Order of Police, Capital City Lodge #9, http://fop9.org/; Teachers for Better Schools (CEA); Stonewall Democrats of Central Ohio

Bar Association Ratings: Highly Recommended by the Columbus Bar Association, http://www.cbalaw.org/CBA_PROD/Main/News_Items/2018_Judiciary_Committee_Findings.aspx ; Columbus Bar Association Judicial Performance Poll 2018, http://www.cbalaw.org/CBA_PROD/Main/News_Items/Columbus_Bar_2018_Judicial_Performance_Poll_Results_Announced.aspx; Columbus Bar Association Judicial Performance Poll 2016, http://www.cbalaw.org/CBA_PROD/Main/News_Items/Columbus_Bar_2016_Judicial_Performance_Poll_Results_Announced.aspx

(1) List your judicial experience (courts and years):

I have been a sitting Judge on the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas Division of Domestic Relations and Juvenile Branch for just under four years.

(2) What about your non-judicial legal experience qualifies you to be a judge?

I was in private practice as a family law attorney from 1982-2014. I had the pleasure and privilege to practice with my father, Wilmore Brown, a distinguished family law attorney and professor as well as my older brother Jeffrey Brown. Their experience provided an additional wealth of knowledge. I practiced in forty different counties in Ohio which provided me with many different perspectives to managing a courtroom.

(3) Why are you running for this particular court seat?

I seek re-election to the bench because I believe that my experience and temperament bring fairness and equity to the cases before me. This is especially important as the domestic relations and juvenile court oversees all cases affecting the families and children of Franklin County. My experience allows me to assist litigants in achieving outcomes that are fair, equitable and serve the best interests of children and families. Further, I have been given the opportunity to develop a center to greatly improve the system and aid victims of domestic violence.

Sarah Thomas Kovoor

Office: Trumbull County – Trumbull County Domestic Relations/Juvenile Court

Age: 57

Residence: Warren, OH

Email: votekovoor@gmail.com

Website: https://www.votekovoor.com; https://www.facebook.com/sarah.kovoor.520; https://twitter.com/votekovoor

Occupation: Partner, Ford, Gold, Kovoor & Simon, Ltd.

Education: B.A. – University of Rochester, J.D. University of Akron School of Law

Work Experience: Trumbull County Prosecutor’s Office, Sarah Thomas Kovoor & Assoc., Simon & Kovoor, LLP, Ford, Gold, Kovoor & Simon, Ltd.

Family: 3 adult children, 3 young grandchildren and elderly widowed mother

Affiliations: Member of Ohio State Bar Association, National Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys, Former President of Rotary Club of Howland Twp., Orthodox Christian Church of Mar Thoma

Endorsements: N/A

Bar Association Ratings: N/A

(1) List your judicial experience (courts and years):

N/A

(2) What about your non-judicial legal experience qualifies you to be a judge?

I bring a unique perspective to the race for Trumbull County Domestic Juvenile Court Judge. I’ve practiced law for over 20 years, 5 of those years as a Trumbull County juvenile and felony prosecutor. Much of my career at the Trumbull County Prosecutor’s Office was focused on prosecuting sexual abuse, child abuse and neglect, child sexual abuse and domestic violence. I zealously advocated for those children who were physically and sexually abused and prosecuted their attackers/abusers. I was a part of the Child Assault Prosecution team, who work with Children’s Services and the local police departments to investigate and prosecute child assault cases. While serving as a juvenile prosecutor, I ensured that juvenile offenders were held accountable. I dealt compassionately with families in crisis and treated their children fairly. As such I am highly trained in the many difficulties these extremely delicate family matters present. These issues are not only a matter for the criminal court, they are dealt with daily in the family court. I founded my own firm, and then went on to join a group which became Ford, Gold, Kovoor & Simon, Ltd., with locations in Warren and Cleveland. There, I advocate for juveniles and adults charged with crimes, where I pursue truth and defend their liberty. I have successfully fought for many people’s civil rights when government entities over-reached and violated them and in one particular case, won a landmark decision. I have represented many litigants in the domestic relations and juvenile court. In 2018 alone, I have represented more than 10 cases in family courts across Ohio. I have litigated thousands of cases in criminal, civil and domestic court and tried more than 40 cases to a verdict. Perhaps most importantly, I was once a personal litigant in the domestic relations court. I understand the complexity family court and the influence it holds over individual lives, particularly children. These experiences have helped me develop the skills to understand and effectively manage the demands of a judgeship. This, along with my inherent ability to be calm, rational, and fair are qualities every judge must possess. I have not sought campaign contributions from attorneys and I am independent minded. Politics, favoritism, cronyism and backroom deals will have no place in my courtroom.

(3) Why are you running for this particular court seat?

My years of experience in the areas of criminal, family and civil law make me uniquely qualified to be Trumbull County Family Court Judge. I see families in crisis in Trumbull County and I believe I am the candidate with the experience and ability to help. Trumbull County is my home and I profoundly care about this community. I have lived here for nearly 30 years, I have raised three children here and my elderly mother lives here. For me, Trumbull County is all about community and leadership its not about politics, it is about people. As a Family Court Judge, I will work to understand the impact on all families. I understand the system, the sheer nature of the work, and the impact my decisions will have. I will work to issue common sense decisions in a timely manner while working to keep costs down by controlling the courtroom. There are a few main issues I would like to address in Trumbull County Family Court including making the court more modern and efficient. I can make the following promises: I will be fair. My court will be transparent. I will be in charge, lawyers will not run my court. Lawyers will act with civility in my court. I won’t allow parents to use children as pawns and the best interest of the children will be paramount. I am the candidate that will make a difference.

Jim Hughes

Office: Franklin County – Franklin County Common Pleas Court

Age: 53

Residence: Columbus, OH

Email: vote4hughes@aol.com

Website: votejimhughes.com

Occupation: Attorney/ Ohio House of Representatives- State Representative 24th Ohio House District

Education: The Ohio State University-BSBA, Capital Law School- Juris Doctorate

Work Experience: Current- Ohio House of Representatives for the 24th Ohio House District. Partner at Isaac Wiles Burkholder & Tettor, LLC Former- Ohio Senate for the 16th District, Assistant Prosecutor for Franklin County Prosecutor’s Office, Assistant City Prosecutor for City Prosecutor’s Office, Bailiff/Court Constable for Franklin County Court of Common Pleas

Family: Married and one daughter

Affiliations: Past Master for Goodale Lodge, Honorary Member for Kentucky Colonel, Aladdin Shrine Temple member of Reception Unit, and Embassador Unit, Life member of The Ohio State University Alumni Association, Member of Charity Newsies, Member of Agonis Club of Columbus, Member of Area Chambers of Commerce, Active Shamrock Club Member, Congressional Youth Leadership Council Board of Ohio State Legislators, Ohio Prematurity Caucus, Ohio Legislative Manufacturing Caucus, The Wellness Forum, BILLD Fellow, Midwestern Council of State Governments, Kids Voting Honorary Board Member, Board of Governors for Central Ohio Crime Stoppers, Board Member for the Impact Community Action, Supreme Court Commission on the RUles of Superintendence 2008-2012, Capital University Law School Board of Counselors 2010-2014, Ohio General Assembly Cancer Caucus Co-Chair 2011-2016, Association of Ohio Commodores 2012-present, Federalist Society Member.

Endorsements: John Lacey II, President of A. Philip Randolph Institute. Louella Jeter, President of Coalition of Black Trade Unionist. Betty Simmons Talley President of Coalition of Labor Union Women. IKO Regional Council of Carpenters. Transport Workers Union Local 208. Teamsters Local Union No. 413. Ohio AFSCME Power in Action. Teamsters Local 284. Ohio State Legislative Board. International Union of Operating Engineers Local 18. Columbus/Central Ohio Building and Construction Trades Council. Central Ohio Labor Council, AFL-CIO. Teachers for Better Schools. Ohio Civil Service Employees Association, AFSCME Local 11. Columbus Fire Fighters Union Local 67. Fraternal Order of Police. Teamsters Local 284. Franklin County Council of Education. Bricklayers & Allied Craftworkers Local 55.

Bar Association Ratings: Columbus Bar Association- Highly Recommended http://www.cbalaw.org/cba_prod. Central Ohio Association for Justice-Highly Recommended https://coaj.org/

(1) List your judicial experience (courts and years):

After practicing law for 24 years, in both the public and private sectors, plus doing both civil and criminal practices, this is my initial seeking of a judgeship. In the public area, I was an Assistant City Attorney, Assistant Franklin County Prosecutor for Ron O’ Brien and I worked as a constable/bailiff for Judge Tommy L. Thompson of The Franklin County Court of Common Pleas while attending night law school. I have been with Isaac Wiles, also known as Wiles Boyle, for 18 years representing clients in various state, county and federal courts.

(2) What about your non-judicial legal experience qualifies you to be a judge?

It is important to look at my experience and background from a common-sense, 24-year record doing both civil and criminal, public and private practices. As an elected official for 18 years, my experience has been dealing with challenging legal issues and representing citizens. This meant doing what was right even if that was against the interests of my own party. As a legislator and judge you have to focus first on the law and what protects our citizens and community. As a lifelong resident, former Prosecutor and State Legislator, my top priority has been to keep our communities and families safe.

(3) Why are you running for this particular court seat?

My beliefs and background have always held the judiciary in the very highest esteem. My interest in the judiciary began while working as a court constable/bailiff for Judge Tommy L. Thompson, of the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas while attending night law school. Our legal systems are based on the Constitutions of the United States and Ohio. If elected, I would bring on the intricate and in-depth understanding of these legal systems and the complexities of daily issues challenging our fast-changing society

Casey P. O’Brien

Office: Trumbull County – Eleventh District Court of Appeals

Age: 42

Residence: Jefferson, OH

Email: caseyobrien@hotmail.com

Website: www.caseyobrien.com

Occupation: Attorney

Education: Notre Dame Cathedral Latin – Walsh University – Cleveland State University Marshall College of Law

Work Experience: General Practice attorney for 18 years

Family: Married (Wendi Chutas), 3 sons

Affiliations: Country Neighbor Program Inc. (President) – Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northeast Ohio (Past Board Member) – Ashtabula County Educational Service Center (Past Board Member) – Grand Valley Youth Football (Past President – Coach) – Pymatuning Area Youth Organization (Little League Coach) – Geauga Lions (Football Coach) – Catholic

Endorsements: N/A

Bar Association Ratings: N/A

(1) List your judicial experience (courts and years):

Chardon Municipal Court – Part-Time Magistrate – 2004-2006 – I believe I have appeared in all courts in the 11th District, as a practicing attorney, over the course of my legal career.

(2) What about your non-judicial legal experience qualifies you to be a judge?

I am a partner with Ibold and O’Brien (formerly Petersen & Ibold) in Chardon Ohio, a general practice law firm, where I practice in the areas of personal injury, real estate, small business, collections, estate planning/probate, criminal and general litigation. I practice throughout Northeast Ohio and have been named an Ohio Super Lawyer, a 10 Best Personal Injury Attorney and am listed in the Global Directory of Who’s Who as a 2016 Top Lawyer. I am a member of the Ohio State, Ashtabula and Geauga County bar associations, the Association of Trial Lawyers of America and the Order of Barristers following my national final appearance on behalf of the Cleveland Marshall College of Law Moot Court Program while in law school. I have experience in the Real Estate/Title industry and have clerked for both the Lake County Prosecutor’s office and a large Cleveland law firm Arter & Hadden Tucker Ellis. I am authorized to practice in all Ohio Courts, the United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio and the United States Tax Court.

(3) Why are you running for this particular court seat?

I believe that I have a wealth of knowledge and experience which, along with my volunteer positions, have given me the ability to not only see both sides of most disputes but to observe the impact appellate decisions have on both the lower Courts and the everyday life for the citizens of Northeast Ohio. I believe that I have appeared in every Court in the 11th district (Lake, Geauga, Ashtabula, Portage, and Trumbull Counties) which has provided a unique view of the wide array of differences between the citizens, businesses, civic organizations and governmental entities throughout this diverse district. It is these experiences, along with my core legal training under some of the best professors, attorneys and Judges in Northeast Ohio that have prepared me for this position. I believe the 11th District Court of Appeals would be well served with the input of someone with my life experience and training in order to carry out the important tasks of reviewing the decisions of the lower Courts and the limited amount of original jurisdiction cases it handles.

Joshua W. Lanzinger

Office: Lucas County – Lucas County Common Pleas

Age: 46

Residence: Toledo, OH

Email: Lanzingerforjudge@gmail.com

Website: http://www.judgelanzinger.com; https://www.facebook.com/judgelanzinger

Occupation: Judge

Education: J.D. from the University of Toledo College of Law

Work Experience: Toledo Municipal Court Judge since 2013

Family: N/A

Affiliations: N/A

Endorsements: Toledo Police Command Officers’ Association, Toledo Police Patrolman’s Association http://www.tppa.net/ Iron Workers Local 55

Bar Association Ratings: N/A

(1) List your judicial experience (courts and years):

Toledo Municipal Court; 2013 – present

(2) What about your non-judicial legal experience qualifies you to be a judge?

I have a well-rounded legal career. Prior to being elected to the Toledo Municipal Court, I handled a variety of cases as an attorney including general civil and criminal law, domestic relations, civil rights, traffic law, workers’ compensation, and landlord/tenant disputes. Throughout my legal career I appeared in in over 35 courts across Ohio. Early in my career I also volunteered my time as a mediator in the Toledo Municipal Court. My experience as an attorney prepared me to become a judge in the Toledo Municipal Court. My experience as a municipal court judge has prepared me to serve on the court of common pleas.

(3) Why are you running for this particular court seat?

As a municipal court judge I have presided over thousands of cases and over 130 trials. Judges in the municipal court preside over misdemeanors, traffic violations, and civil matters under $15,000. Judges in the court of common pleas preside over felonies, the most serious criminal offenses, and civil matters over $25,000. The community deserves judges with knowledge and experience to be assured a fair justice system. Having been a judge since 2013, I have the knowledge and experience to serve Lucas County well in the court of common pleas.

 

Erik R. Blaine

Office: Montgomery County – Montgomery County Common Pleas, General Division

Age: 37

Residence: Vandalia, OH

Email: JudgeBlaine@gmail.com

Website: www.KeepJudgeBlaine.com; https://www.facebook.com/keepjudgeblaine/; https://twitter.com/JudgeBlaine

Occupation: Judge

Education: J.D. from the University of Dayton School of Law, B.A. in Psychology and Criminal Justice from the University of Dayton

Work Experience: Felony and juvenile prosecutor, 2007-2012 Private civil practice, including federal and appellate cases, 2007-2017 Private criminal defense practice, 2012-2017 Private debtor and creditor bankruptcy practice, 2008-2017 In house insurance defense 2006- 2007

Family: Married with 1 child

Affiliations: Civic/Community/Professional/Religious Affiliations: Ohio Judicial Conference, Ohio Common Pleas Judges Association, Carl D. Kessler Inn of Court Dayton Lawyers’ Club, Ohio State Bar Association, Dayton Bar Association, Shelby County Bar Association, Kentucky Bar Association, National District Attorney Association, American Bankruptcy Law Forum American Association for Justice, Ohio Association for Justice Catholic Knights of Columbus

Endorsements: N/A

Bar Association Ratings: Not yet available

(1) List your judicial experience (courts and years):

Montgomery County Common Pleas Court Judge – General Division: May 2017-Present As Judge of the General Division, I preside over: – Adult Felony Crimes including Murder, Rape, Child Pornography, Trafficking, and Grand Theft. Serious Civil Cases – personal injury, workers comp, contract, real estate, tax, employment, public records, and business cases. As Judge, I ensure every party in every case gets Due Process and an opportunity to be heard. Magistrate (acting): several times in 2015 – As an acting magistrate, I substituted and assisted, in Vandalia Municipal Court, presiding over misdemeanor criminal and civil matters. Judicial Hearing Officer – University of Dayton -University Hearing Board: 2000-2003 -Chairman; 2002-2003; Student Hearing Board: 2000 – 2003

(2) What about your non-judicial legal experience qualifies you to be a judge?

As an Assistant Prosecutor, I was solely responsibility for my cases, both adult and juvenile felonies, including the highest first-degree felonies. To make certain juveniles got help instead of prison, I created a juvenile comprehensive technology diversion program. Additionally, I developed education outreach programs on sexting and cyber-bullying presenting the programs twice a year to over a dozen public schools, thus reaching thousands of children.

Because of my work as an assistant prosecutor, I was selected for and completed highly competitive specialized training programs with the Department of Justice’s National Advocacy Center and the U.S. Secret Service. As one of only a handful of prosecutors with this training, I was ensured that these highly technical cases were properly prosecuted. When companies put profits over people, I represented individuals protecting their rights in complex nationwide litigation. Over the course of my career, my practice included civil rights, business/corporate compliance, bankruptcy, landlord tenant, foreclosure, divorce, plaintiffs’ personal injury, insurance defense, exoffender re-entry, agriculture law, labor and employment, disability rights, probate/estate planning, administrative, and criminal defense.

As a private practice attorney, I have been recognized as an Ohio Super Lawyer Rising Star for 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2018 – an honor awarded to only 2.5 percent of attorneys. I am licensed to appear and practice in the Supreme Courts of the United States, Ohio, and Kentucky, and several federal courts. Because of my diverse legal experience and proven dedication to public service, I am a highly qualified Common Pleas Court Judge. As Judge of the Common Pleas Court, I ask for your support and vote.

(3) Why are you running for this particular court seat?

My commitment to public service began before I was born, when my mother and grandparents escaped Communist Czechoslovakia to legally emigrate to America. My family left behind a justice system that was closed, corrupt, and inept. Their story anchors my values as well as motivated me to become an attorney and now to continue serving as a fair, open, and prepared judge. Public service does not begin when someone takes the bench; it is a duty, a calling, and a life.

In the community, I have dedicated myself to service not for praise or for the advancement of an agenda, but because it is what all attorneys and judges should do. I have shown a commitment to public service and education about the judicial system unmatched by my contemporaries. I have the drive and ability to enhance the judiciary by continuing to give back to the community regularly and for the right reasons. And as important as the extracurriculars are to a judge’s work, the most important piece of being a judge is doing the job. The role of a judge is to interpret the law as written by the General Assembly.

When judges overstep the bounds of their oath by effectively rewriting the law, they are wrongly picking up the legislators’ pens. That is exactly what my mother and grandparents fled from, leaving their home, their country, and everything they ever knew behind them, in search of the American Dream. My ability to cross the aisle and work together with people of all backgrounds, values, affiliations, and interests sets me apart as a judge. In addition to having represented clients of all varieties, I have a very unique perspective on working collaboratively because my wife and I are of different political parties. Our bipartisan relationship is possible because we listen without recrimination or prejudgment and devote ourselves to challenging our own positions in order to understand each other’s views. Anyone can claim that they can do that, but it is harder, and more worth it, to live every day. My family informs who I am as a judge. I endeavor to make them proud, keep them safe, and provide justice for everyone