Ralph Winkler

Office: For Judge of the Hamilton County Court of Common Pleas, Probate Division
Term Beginning 2/9/2021

Age: 58

Residence: Cincinnati



Social Media: @JudgeWinkler (Twitter);

Occupation: Hamilton County Probate Judge

Education: J.D. Northern Kentucky University Chase School of Law

Work Experience: Hamilton County Probate Court Judge 2015-2020; Hamilton County Common Pleas Court Judge 2005-2015; Hamilton County Municipal Court Judge 1999-2005; Hamilton County Assistant Prosecutor 1987-1999

Family: Married with 3 children and 7 grandchildren

Affiliations: non-denominational Christian

Endorsements: Plumbers and Pipefitters UA Local 392

Bar Association Ratings: pending

(1) List your judicial experience (courts and years)
Hamilton County Probate Court Judge (2015-current) preside over adoptions, mental health court, guardianships, estates, trusts, name changes, civil cases, marriage licenses, and 80+ functions unique to probate court

Hamilton County Common Pleas Court Judge (2005-2015) presided over civil cases and felony criminal cases Hamilton County Municipal Court Judge (1999-2005) presided over misdemeanors and civil cases

As a judge I have presided over 70,000 + cases.

(2) What about your non-judicial legal experience qualifies you to be a judge?
I have worked in the courts every day of my legal career. I started in 1983 as a law clerk in the Court of Common Pleas while paying my way through law school. During law school I interned with the public defender’s office. In 1987, I became an Assistant Hamilton County Prosecutor and I also opened my own law office representing clients in probate court, personal injury case, real estate, and general civil matters. I practiced in every court in Hamilton County until I became a judge in 1999.

(3) Why are you running for this particular court seat?
I am running for reelection to the probate court because I love this job and I love serving the public. The probate court is unique in that many of our cases involve helping people through their most difficult times and helping those most vulnerable in our society. For this reason, I have found my true passion in probate court and want to continue implementing positive changes to adoptions, guardianships, and mental health cases.

I also plan to continue to work toward having the most open and accessible court in Ohio. While in office, I initiated our e-filing system, allowing attorneys and members of the public to file cases online and pre-apply for marriage licenses. I have worked to modernize the court using technology to increase efficiency and access to justice. In my next term, I hope to achieve the goal of providing online access to every public case document in our court.