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TV drama influences Cleveland attorney’s career decision

CONTACT: Kenneth A. Brown, OSBA, 800-282-6556 or 614-487-4426

Columbus, OHIO (June 28, 2011) – Ronald V. Johnson Jr. knew in junior high school that he wanted to be a lawyer, thanks to the influence of courtroom dramas on television and the movies.

“Watching reruns of ‘Perry Mason’ on television, I always enjoyed the story lines and the ‘gotcha’ moment at the end of the show,” Johnson said. “Over the years, I’ve developed a respect for the profession and the particular ways that lawyers influence our society.”   

Johnson attended law school at night and graduated from the University of Akron Law School in 2004. He joined the law group at KeyBank in Cleveland, where he is currently vice president and associate counsel.

Johnson is in his second year as the president of the Norman S. Minor Bar Association, the largest organization of African-American lawyers in the state of Ohio with a membership of more than 100 lawyers from Cuyahoga and surrounding counties. “I believe that all lawyers should be active in bar associations because they provide the venue through which lawyers participate in the community of the profession,” Johnson said. “As president of the Norman S. Minor Bar Association, I’m working with my fellow officers to grow our core membership. We’re collaborating with other organizations to advance diversity and inclusion in the legal profession.”

 Johnson has been a member of the Ohio State Bar Association (OSBA) since 2005, and currently serves on the Council of Delegates for District 12 (Cuyahoga County). He is also an active member of the OSBA’s Affinity Bar Committee, which brings together specialized bar associations from across Ohio. One of the committee’s purposes is to advocate for diversity in the legal profession.

In the community, Johnson serves on the Phillis Wheatley Association’s board of trustees; chairs the Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority; and is a member of the United Way of Greater Cleveland Investment Committee.

As a volunteer for the Legal Aid Society of Cleveland, Johnson remembers a rewarding professional experience. He was able to help resolve a tax claim against a man on permanent disability who was suffering from drug and alcohol addictions. He recalls, “I spent 16 months working with the client and the IRS toward a resolution of a very complex and often frustrating case. At the conclusion, I received a very nice letter and card from my client and his guardian mother who were so appreciative of my time, patience and optimistic approach to their situation.”

In addition to his law degree, Johnson earned an undergraduate degree in business administration from Cleveland State University and a master of business administration from Baldwin-Wallace College. He lives in South Euclid (44118) with his wife Concetta and their eight-year-old triplets.

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.

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