Brown, Voinovich Announce Nomination Process For Filling Upcoming Vacancy For U.S. District Judgeship in Northern District

Senators Establish Judicial Advisory Commission to Receive Recommendations for U.S. District Court Judge in Northern District of Ohio

WASHINGTON, DC- U.S. Sens. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and George V. Voinovich (R-OH) today announced the start of the process for recommending a candidate to fill the vacancy on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio. The vacancy will be created when Chief Judge James G. Carr assumes senior status on June 1, 2010.

In the interest of identifying the best possible judicial candidates for Ohio's federal bench, Brown and Voinovich established two judicial advisory commissions a year ago. With members appointed by both senators, the commissions recommend candidates for positions in the Northern and Southern Districts of Ohio.

"I want to applaud Chief Judge Carr for his many years of service, and for his continued service in the future," said Brown. "And I appreciate all the work that the commission members will devote to finding the best possible candidates for this important position."

"I commend Judge Carr for his distinguished service and noteworthy contributions to our great state and the nation," Sen. Voinovich said. "I am confident in the Commission's process and look forward to their recommendation of a judge with impartiality, legal expertise and judicial temperament to serve the Northern District of Ohio with integrity."

The commissions, first established in April 2009, have 17 members. To prevent any conflicts of interest, commission members residing in the Southern District of Ohio will screen applicants for the Northern District.

Candidates can download applications at or can request them by emailing The completed application must be sent to by the close of business on Friday, June 4.

U.S. District Court judges are nominated by the president of the United States and must be confirmed by the U.S. Senate. U.S. District Courts are general trials courts which hear both civil and criminal cases.

The Northern District has court locations in Cleveland, Akron, Toledo, and Youngstown and serves 5.9 million citizens in 40 Ohio counties. The commission screening candidates for the Toledo seat will be chaired by Nancy Rogers of Columbus. Ms. Rogers is a former Ohio Attorney General and former dean of the Moritz College of Law at the Ohio State University. Other commission members include Robin Bozian, of Marietta, an attorney with Washington County Legal Aid; Donald Brey, of Columbus, a partner at Chester, Wilcox & Saxbe; Al Gerhardstein, of Cincinnati, a partner at Gerhardstein & Branch; Sean Grayson, of Dayton, General Counsel to AFSCME Ohio Council 8; Ralph Harper, of Dayton, former Green County commissioner; Dave Hobson, of Springfield, a former Representative of Ohio's 7th Congressional district; Nathaniel Jones, of Cincinnati, chief diversity and inclusion officer for Blank Rome and former member of U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit; Ralph Kohnen, of Cincinnati, a partner at Taft Stettinius & Hollister; John Kulewicz, of Columbus, a partner at Vorys, Sater, Seymour, and Pease; Greg Lockhart, of Dayton, a partner at Taft Stettinius & Hollister and former U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Ohio; Roderick McDavis, of Athens, president of Ohio University; Jill Meyer, of Cincinnati, member-in-charge of Frost Brown Todd's Cincinnati office; Alvarene Owens, of Dayton, an independent practitioner specializing in civil claims; David Shroyer, of Columbus, member of Colley Shroyer & Abraham; Elizabeth Smith, of Columbus, a partner at Vorys, Sater, Seymour, and Pease; and Susan Tomasky, of Columbus, executive vice-president and general counsel to American Electric Power.


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