President Trump signs bill to rename Dayton federal building for Judge Rice

President Donald Trump on Monday signed legislation to rename the federal building in downtown Dayton after Judge Walter H. Rice.

U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, and Senators Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, and Rob Portman, R-Ohio, sponsored the legislation.

“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 in a statement. “With the help of Senators Brown and Portman, we were able to get this bill across the finish line. Judge Rice is one of our community’s most dedicated public servants, and this is a fitting tribute and honor he wholly deserves.”

The building at 200 W. Second Street has not had a name since it opened in 1975.

“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,” Brown said in a statement.

Portman released a similar statement.

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

Rice was appointed to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio in 1980 by President Jimmy Carter. He served as chief judge of the court from 1996 to 2003, and is currently a judge on senior status in that court.

He received the Thomas J. Moyer award for judicial excellence in 2014.

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