Bill to name Dayton federal building after Judge Walter Rice heads to president’s desk

The federal building and courthouse in downtown Dayton is a step closer to being renamed for U.S. District Court Judge Walter Rice, and the bill is headed to President Donald Trump’s desk to sign.

The U.S. House of Representatives today passed a bill sponsored by Ohio Sens. Sherrod Brown, a Democrat, and Rob Portman, a Republican, to rename the building for Rice, according to a news release from Brown’s office.

The process of the renaming began last year.

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Said Brown, “Judge Rice has spent his legal career in service to Montgomery County, and it is fitting that the Dayton Federal Building, where he has devoted nearly four decades of his life, bears his name. I join Sen. Portman and Rep. Turner in gratitude for Judge Rice’s service to Dayton as we work together to honor his legacy.”

Said Portman, “For more than four decades, Judge Rice has been a tireless advocate for justice, the people of Dayton, and the state of Ohio. This is a fitting tribute to his life’s work, and I join Senator Brown and Rep. Turner in thanking him for his service.”

U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, introduced the companion legislation in the House.

“I assembled a panel to recommend who to honor in naming the federal building in downtown Dayton, and they unanimously chose Judge Walter Rice,” Turner said. “With the help of Senators Brown and Portman, we were able to get this bill across the finish line and to the President’s desk. Judge Rice is one of our community’s most dedicated public servants and this is a fitting tribute and honor he wholly deserves.”

Rice was appointed as a federal judge in 1980.

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