Task Force on Judicial Excellence Issues Report and Recommendations

The Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association (CMBA) Task Force on Judicial Excellence has released its final report and recommendations. The report is available by clicking here.

The CMBA invited its members and the public to provide comments and observations between November 2013 and January 2014 through an online comment form.

 After years of extensive work, study and public meetings, the Task Force recently issued its report and recommendations.  While the Task Force report and recommendations represent the views of the Task Force and its members only, and not those of the CMBA, the Task Force report contains a set of ideas for discussion and consideration by everyone concerned with ensuring an outstanding judiciary.  The CMBA invites its members and the public to provide comments and observations through an online comment form at http://tinyurl.com/TFOJE.  We welcome community input as we consider what we can do to continually improve our system of government, in the greatest tradition of Cleveland lawyers.

Publicly launched in June 2010, the Task Force On Judicial Exellence is an initiative of the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association (CMBA).  It is comprised of experienced local attorneys representing a wide spectrum of practices that will study the strengths and weaknesses of the system through which Ohioans elect their judges, and then recommend improvements.  In addition, in October 2010, the chairs of both the Cuyahoga County Democratic and Republican parties accepted invitations to join the Task Force.

Although the CMBA has long been involved with voter education, the mission of the Task Force goes beyond educating voters; the group is tasked with finding innovative ways the county can attract, elect, and train a highly qualified judiciary.

The Task Force's initial efforts were directed at gathering information and ideas.  Bimonthly public forums explored current electoral practices and procedures and elicit suggestions on how we can improve on them.  In addition, the Task Force reviewed articles and studies examining state models for judicial elections from across the country and interview academic, statehouse, and civic leaders who have crafted and participated in judicial election models in other states.  After collecting as many perspectives as possible, the Task Force presented its recommendations for ensuring the ongoing quality and stability of this critical third branch of government.

The Task Force Members

Co-chaired by Judge Timothy E. McMonagle of the Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas and James D. Robenalt of Thompson Hine LLP, the task force includes: