Joseph Russo


Office: Cleveland Municipal Court

Age: 61

Residence: Cleveland, OH

Occupation: Attorney

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

Work Experience: Cuyahoga County Juvenile Court Judge (1998-2012), Assistant Cuyahoga County Prosecutor (1987-1998), Rauser and Associates LLC, Private Practice of Law (2013-2019)

Family: 5 grandchildren, 3 children

Affiliations: St. Leo’s Parishioner, Olmsted Falls Travel Baseball Association  

Endorsements:  Cuyahoga County Democratic Party, Congresswoman Marcia Fudge, Teamsters Union Local 436

Bar Association Ratings:  Excellent

(1) List your judicial experience (courts and years):
I served 14 years as a Cuyahoga County Juvenile Court Judge, with 7 years experience as Administrative Judge and 3 years expererience as Presiding Drug Court Judge. 1998-2012

(2) What about your non-judicial legal experience qualifies you to be a judge?
I have over 32 years legal experience. !2 years I served as an Assistant Cuyahoga County Prosecutor with extensive trial expererience. I have tried serious criminal cases such as murder, rape, and robbery. In private practice I have expererience in criminal defense, family and juvenile law, bankruptcy and civil litigation. In addition , I have a B.B.A. degree with a major in accounting and experience working as a credit analyst at a bank. The business experience is helpful in civil litigation and having constructive input into the court’s administrative functions including the best ways to utilize the court’s resources.  

(3) Why are you running for this particular court seat?
I aspire to be judge at Cleveland Municipal Court because I believe I am the right candidate to move the court forward on day one and into the future. I was born and raised in Cleveland and I care about the people that live here. I believe that I can make a difference in the lives of the people who may appear before the court. If elected to the Bench, I would like to utilize and apply my 14 years of judicial experience, with 7 years as Administrative Judge, to successfully move the court forward. The Court needs tighter management controls and more efficient processes and procedures as it pertains to scheduling, case management, and implementing result driven cost effective programs in the court system. It is even more imperative when using taxpayers funded limited resources. I also believe the court needs to ultimately address the issues contributing to overcrowded jails, the conditions at the jail, the lenghty wait time for drug treatment and mental health services to begin, and to finalize bail reform.