OSBA forms Committee on the Independent Judiciary and Unjust Criticism of Judges


SUBJECT:    OSBA Forms Committee on the Independent Judiciary and Unjust Criticism of Judges

Contact:  Kenneth Brown – 800-282-6556 or 614-487-4426

Columbus, Ohio (November 29, 2001) – Ohio State Bar Association (OSBA) Mary Jane Trapp today announced the formation of the OSBA Committee on the Independent Judiciary and the Unjust Criticism of Judges.  The committee is charged with evaluating potential responses to the unjust criticism of judges and fostering the understanding of an independent judiciary.

            “There are situations where a judge receives unjust criticism but is barred by professional ethics from responding,” said Mary Jane Trapp.  “That is a role the OSBA can play—providing correct information about the judge’s role and limitations to foster a better understanding of the legal process among the public.”

            The OSBA will work closely with the Ohio Judicial Conference, which has a similar committee, to provide public information about the role of judges and various aspects of the legal process.  The two committees will also work together when a complaint is filed to develop appropriate responses.

            “Last year, for example, the OSBA recognized issues in the race for the Supreme Court of Ohio and stepped in,” said Mary Jane Trapp. “Our purpose is not to stop criticism of judges or the legal process, it is to curb unjust criticism and help to maintain the independence of the judicial branch to insure fairness in the legal system.”

            Ohioans with concerns about the unjust criticism of judges in Ohio can forward their complaints in writing to the General Counsel of the Ohio State Bar Association, P.O. Box 16562, Columbus, Ohio 43216-6562.  The General Counsel will also forward a copy of the complaint to the committee for consideration and response.

            The Ohio State Bar Association, founded in 1880, is a voluntary association representing approximately 25,000 members of the bench and bar of Ohio as well as nearly 4,000 legal assistants and law students.  Through its activities and the activities of its related organizations, the OSBA serves both its members and the public by promoting the highest standards in the practice of law and the administration of justice.


Members of the OSBA committee include:

Judge John Adams, Akron

Thomas Berridge, Columbus

Beverly Briggs, Cleveland

Judge James Brogan, Dayton 

Judge Mary Cacioppo, Cuyahoga Falls

James Caruso, Toledo

Judge Dale Crawford, Columbus

C. Lynne Day, Chardon

Frank Diedrichs, Cincinnati

Gerald Draper, Columbus

Judge Mike Fain, Dayton

Judge Donald Ford, Warren

Cherie Gall, Athens

C. Michael Gegenheimer, Granville

Judge Scott Gwin, Canton

Judge Charles Hague, Jefferson

Judge William Harsha, Chillicothe

Steven Herron, Columbus

Barbara Howard, Cincinnati

Thomas Intili, Dayton

Reginald Jackson Jr., Toledo

Judge Diane Karpinski, Chair, Cleveland

William Keck, Hamilton

Richard Kerger, Toledo

Richard Lewis, Jackson

James McCrystal, Cleveland

James McMonagle, Cleveland

Christopher McNeil, Worthington

John Norwine, Cincinnati

Michael Piacentino, Marion

Judge Richard Reinbold, Canton

Judge Robert Ringland, Batavia

James Roberts, Youngstown

Judge Reginald Rouston, Findlay

Judge Ted Schneiderman, Akron

Heather Sowald, Board Liaison, Columbus

Terrance Steel, Cleveland

Geoffrey Stern, Columbus

David Tyron, Cleveland

Judge Cheryl Waite, Youngstown

Andrea Weinstein, Toledo

Judge William Young, Middletown




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