Name: Shirley J. Christian
City of Residence: New Springfield, Ohio
Party Affiliation: Republican
Office Desired: Judge of Court of Common Pleas General Division
Why should you be elected
• I’ve served the public well in this position for two years. During that time, I reduced the backlog of cases by 36% by resolving well over 2000 cases.
• I am the only candidate who has been a Judge and the only one to preside over adult felonies and adult civil disputes.
• Prior to taking the Bench, I was a trial lawyer in this same courtroom and other general division courts across the state. I handled over 500 matters in Mahoning County alone.
• As a former trial lawyer and current Judge, I understand the toll that lengthy litigation takes on the parties, the Judicial system, the County and the public.
• I strive to move cases along while providing a level playing field for all.
• My decisions have been fair, firm and efficient.
• As a Judge, I made educating the public about the Court a priority. Recent national events reinforce the need to increase transparency in the Court.
• I recognized the special needs of our Veterans in felony level offenses and established an Honor Court Docket for them.
Top three priorities
1) Continue to protect the public and punish the offender in criminal cases
2) Continue to provide an efficient and fair resolution of cases while also educating the public about the Court.
3) Continue Veterans docket.
Judge Christian was appointed to the Common Pleas Bench of Mahoning County in August of 2014 and began her term October 1, 2014.
Prior to becoming Judge she was a trial lawyer for 28 years with one of the area’s largest law firms, Harrington Hoppe and Mitchell Ltd.
She was a Member of the firm and the first female member of its Management Committee.
As a trial lawyer she received the highest possible peer review rating by Martindale Hubbell.
She is a graduate of Edinboro University where she obtained both Bachelor of Science and Master of Education Degrees.
Following College she was an Instructor, Athletic Director and Coach at Villa Maria College in Erie, Pa.
She then attended Ohio Northern University Law School and graduated in the top 10% of her class in 1986.
She came to Youngstown that year to begin the practice of law with the firm that is now Harrington Hoppe and Mitchell Ltd.
While maintaining a full time law practice she was selected by Chief Justice Moyer to serve on the Board of Commissioners on Grievances and Discipline, which rules on grievances filed against lawyers and judges.
She chaired one of the Probable Cause Committees of the Board. She was voted by her peers to serve on the Board of Governors, which is the Ohio State Bar Association’s governing body.
She was also elected President of the Mahoning County Bar Association.
She was selected by the past president of the Ohio State Bar Association to serve on the committee to evaluate candidates for the Ohio Supreme Court.
She was recently honored by Community Legal Aid for her service in establishing a Legal Aid Clinic with the law firm.
She has served as a mentor in the Ohio Supreme Court Lawyer to Lawyer Mentoring Program for the last five years.
Judge Christian is currently a member of the Lions Club of Youngstown, Goodwill Board, Women United (United Way), Nathaniel R. Jones Inns of Court, St. Jude Catholic Church, Ohio State Bar Association and the Mahoning County Bar Association.
She resides in New Springfield with her husband of 26 years, Attorney Robert Christian.