City: Washington Twp.
Education: Ohio State University (B.A), George Washington University Law School (J.D.)
Employment: I began my legal career in 1996 as a military officer, serving as a judge advocate in the Air Force. I was assigned to Sheppard Air Force Base in Texas, where I served as a prosecutor in court martial trials and many types of administrative board proceedings. My next assignment was to the legal office at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, where I was on the contract trial team. In 2001 I joined the local law firm of Sebaly Shillito & Dyer and practiced law there for 21 years. Earlier this year I was appointed by the Governor to the Court of Common Pleas of Montgomery County.
Community involvement: Trustee of the Washington-Centerville Library (2011-2022), including two terms as president of the board and two terms as fiscal officer; trustee of the Centerville-Washington Foundation (2015-present), including serving as chairman of the Grant Committee and secretary; member of the Dayton Rotary Club (2017-present)
Why are you seeking elected office? Public service is an honor and every citizen should serve in their own way. When I graduated from law school, many of my classmates went straight into a law firm, but I joined the military because I wanted to serve the country. I eventually joined a law firm and worked on behalf of clients for a long time, but realized it was time to serve the public again. I was honored to be appointed as a judge and will continue to serve at the pleasure of the voters.
Why should voters elect you? Over the past 25 years I have handled all kinds of cases, including criminal matters and a wide variety of civil actions, such as breach of contract cases, bankruptcies, personal injuries, you name it; I’ve been blessed with a well-rounded career. That experience is of great benefit and it allows me to provide good service to the voters of the our county.
If elected, what will be your top three priorities? Cases take too long to be resolved, especially civil cases. If you are injured, you shouldn’t have to wait excessively long for your day in court. If you are running a small business and it gets sued, the litigation should not keep hanging over your your head like a dark cloud. I can’t promise any particular outcome, but I pay close attention to all cases assigned to me and make fair and prompt decisions.
What specific plans do you have to address those top priorities? I personally attend all scheduling conferences because I think it helps establish clear expectations of the parties and their counsel. I hold final conferences before trial in person, not by telephone, as that seems to help narrow what is really being disputed and speeds matters along. I find that when lawyers sit down next to each other, they treat each other better. I don’t lightly grant motions that seek to reschedule trials.
Anything else you would like voters to know? I’m from a military family but grew up mostly in the Dayton area and attended Fairborn High School. Everybody who comes into my courtroom is treated with respect and dignity.