Judith L. French
Justice since January 1, 2013
Justice Judith L. French became the 155th justice of the Ohio Supreme Court on January 1, 2013. She was appointed by Gov. John R. Kasich on December 20, 2012.
Prior to her appointment, Justice French served at the Tenth District Court of Appeals, which hears appeals from Franklin County courts and state administrative agencies. She was elected to the appellate court in November 2004 and served until her appointment.
Prior to becoming a judge, Justice French served as chief legal counsel to Governor Taft. Dedicated to public service, Justice French also served as an assistant attorney general and then chief counsel in the office of Attorney General Betty Montgomery from 1997 to 2002. While there, she argued twice in the United States Supreme Court. Most recently, she argued on behalf of the State in the Cleveland school vouchers case.
Justice French began her state service in 1993 as deputy director for legal affairs at the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency. She was also an associate counsel at Steelcase Inc. in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and an associate at the Columbus law firm of Porter, Wright, Morris & Arthur, where she practiced environmental law.
Justice French has earned a B.A. in Political Science, an M.A. in History (Military History & Strategic Studies), and a J.D. (with honors), all from The Ohio State University. She currently serves as a member of the Moritz College of Law National Council.
Justice French grew up in Sebring, Ohio, a small town in Mahoning County and was a mentor and tutor in the Columbus public schools. Justice French resides in Grandview Heights with her husband, Ed Skeens, who is a Magistrate in the Franklin County Common Pleas Court, and two children, Julia and Joseph.
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