Background, Experience, and Qualifications
Candidacy for Judge of the Hardin County Common Pleas Court Domestic Relations Division in 2022 Elections
Armed with more than 34 years of legal experience, including the past 10 years serving as the Hardin County, Ohio Magistrate, I have declared my candidacy for Judge, of the Hardin County Common Pleas Court Domestic Relations Division in the 2022 elections. I will bring to this elected office the same passion for fairness and justice as I have over the course of my career and will continue to follow the law as written and not legislate from the bench.
Extensive Legal Experience & Qualifications
I am serving as the Magistrate in both the Juvenile and General Divisions of the Hardin County Common Pleas Court presiding over numerous family law, juvenile and civil matters during my appointment.
Prior to being appointed Magistrate in January, 2012, I served as an Assistant Hardin County Prosecuting Attorney for almost four years, being the Chief Assistant Prosecutor for two and a half years handling murder, rape, burglary and drug offenses.
I engaged in private practice for 20 years as a trial and appellate attorney handling juvenile, domestic relations, criminal and civil cases. I appeared as a trial and appellate attorney before the Ohio Supreme Court, Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (Cincinnati), U.S. Federal District Court (Toledo), the Third District Court of Appeals (Lima), the Sixth District Court of Appeals (Toledo) and the Municipal and Common Pleas Courts in Allen, Auglaize, Hardin, Hancock and Putnam Counties.
I was also an Adjunct Staff Attorney at the Ohio Northern Legal Clinic in Lima for 2 years supervising The Innocence Project and third year law students drafting legal documents and appearing in court. I was a judicial law clerk at the Third District Court of Appeals in Lima for 2 ½ years.
I earned a Juris Doctorate degree in 1987 from Ohio Northern University Pettit College of Law and Baccalaureate of Arts degree in 1983 from Seton Hall University. I am licensed to practice law in the states of Ohio and New Jersey, the United States District Courts of Ohio and New Jersey, and the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals.
- Magistrate, Hardin County Common Pleas Court 2012-Present
- Chief Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, Hardin County Prosecutor’s Office 2009-2012
- Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, Hardin County Prosecutor’s Office 2008-2009
- Sole Practitioner, Santo Law Firm 1989-2008
- Adjunct Attorney for The Innocence Project, Ohio Northern University Legal Clinic 2004-2005
- Adjunct Staff Attorney, Ohio Northern University Legal Clinic 2001-2002
- Independent Contract Attorney, Allen County Legal Aid 1996-2001
- Judicial Law Clerk, Third District Court of Appeals, Lima, Ohio 1987-1989
- Assistant Judicial Law Clerk, Superior Court of New Jersey 1986
I have resided in Ada for 38 years and chose to make rural Hardin County my home. I am an avid reader of history and non-fiction; enjoy gardening, canning, cooking and spending time outdoors with my dog, Lexi.
- Juris Doctorate, Claude W. Pettit College of Law, Ohio Northern University 1987
- Bachelor of Arts, Seton Hall University 1983
Memberships & Community Service
- Ohio Magistrates Association Current Member
- Hardin County Bar Association Past President and Active Member
- Ohio State Bar Association Current Member
- Bruce C. French Inns of Court Current President
- Hardin County Republican Party Active Member
- Hardin County Republican Women Active Member
- Buckeye State Sheriffs’ Association Associate Member
- Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity Current Member
- Ada, Liberty Conservation Club Current Member
- W.O.R.T.H. Center Board Member 2006-2012
- Allen County Appellate Court Committee 2005-2009
- Allen County Common Pleas Court Committee 2002-2009
- Allen County Juvenile Drug Treatment Court 2005-2009
- Allen County Bar Association Admissions Committee 1997-2008
- Allen County Bar Association Grievance Committee 1996-2002
- Lutheran Social Services Cheryl Allen Center Board Member 1993-2009