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Mary  DeGenaro

Mary DeGenaro

7th District Court of Appeals
Full Term Commencing Feb. 9, 2025

Candidate Details

  • Residence
  • Email
  • Social Media
  • Age
  • Occupation
    Chief Legal Counsel for Auditor of State Keith Faber
  • Education

    Cleveland-Marshall College of Law, Cleveland State University, Juris Doctor

    Youngstown State University, Bachelor of Arts, Economics/Combined Business

  • Work Experience

    2019-date Chief Legal Counsel, Auditor of State Keith Faber

    2018 Justice, Ohio Supreme Court

    2001-2018  Judge, 7th District Court of Appeals

    2011-2013  Adjunct Faculty, Youngstown State University, Political Science Department

    1998-2001  Poland Village Council

    1986-2001  Private Practice

  • Family
    Married with two adult children who are married.
  • Affiliations

    Admitted to the following Courts:

    United States Supreme Court (1991)

    United States Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit (1994)

    United States District Court, Northern District of Ohio (1987)

    United States District Court, Western District of Pennsylvania (1993)

    The Federalist Society

    The National Rifle Association

    Association of Ohio Commodores

    Roman Catholic

  • Endorsements

    Auditor of State Keith Faber

    Treasurer of State Robert Sprague

    Mahoning County Republican Party

    Mahoning County GOP Chair Tom McCabe

    Harrison County GOP Chair John Jones

    Jefferson County GOP Chair Brian Scarpone

    Belmont County GOP Chair Dave Jones

    Noble County GOP Chair Mike Young

    Monroe County GOP Chair Dan Weber

    Former Ohio Sen. James Carnes – Belmont County

    Former Ohio Sen. Frank Hoagland – Jefferson County

    Ohio Rep. Don Jones, 95th District

    Harrison County Prosecutor Lauren Knight

    Belmont County Prosecutor Kevin Flanagan

    Belmont County Sheriff Dave Lucas

    Noble County Sheriff Jason Mackie

Photo of Mary  DeGenaro Mary DeGenaro

Question 1

List your judicial experience (courts and years)

2018  Justice, Ohio Supreme Court

2001-2018  Judge, 7th District Court of Appeals-Elected 2000, re-elected 2006, 2012.

In 2000 was first Republican elected to the 7th District in 24 years, and was the only Republican on the court from 2001-2015.

Presiding Judge for the 2007-2008 and 2013-14 terms.

Selected to sit by assignment on 10 cases with the Ohio Supreme Court, and on 6 of the 12 Appellate Districts in Ohio: the 4th, 5th, 6th, 8th, 9th, and 11th.

Heard over 4,000 appeals and wrote over 1,100 majority and minority opinions; approximately 130 were selected for publication.

2005-2018  Appellate Practice Specialty Certification Board - Founding Member

Prepared application to Ohio Supreme Court and successfully obtained approval for the certification; drafted certification requirements, process, and examination; reviewed annual exam application and results for admission.

2003-04 Member Voter Education/Public Funding Working Group

Chief Justice Thomas J. Moyer's initiative, "Judicial Impartiality: The Next Step Forum" to address multiple issues involving judicial races.

2001-2018 Ohio Appellate Judges Association; Secretary (2017-18)

2001-2018 Ohio Judicial Conference Executive Committee (2013-2018)

Judicial Ethics and Professionalism Committee (2001-2018); Co-chair (2013-2018)

Appellate Practice and Procedure Committee (created 2013-2018)

Specialized Dockets Committee (2017-2018)

Question 2

What non-judicial legal experience qualifies you to be a judge?

Before serving on the 7th District, I was counsel on 25 appeals before the 7th and 11th Appellate Districts, and and two cases before the Ohio Supreme Court, a significant number for a non-government lawyer. 

In my current role as Chief Legal Counsel for Ohio Auditor Keith Faber, I am a member of the Executive Staff, which assists the Auditor as he manages an 800+ employee statewide agency.  I am also responsible for supervising a legal department of 8 attorneys plus staff, which in addition to providing legal advice across the state during the course of the thousands of audits conducted every year, the attorneys also serve as in-house counsel to address other legal issues of the office, such as providing responses to public records requests, contract review and negotiation, provide legal review of publications of the office, etc.   

In addition to my leadership roles, I specifically provide legal advice regarding ethics, HR issues, overseeing litigation involving the office or where AOS staff is called to testify, and review and assist drafting legislation proposed by the office or that may impact the office’s work.  This requires review of interrelated state and federal statutory and administrative regulation interpretation, as well as constitutional provisions.

Question 3

Why are you running for this particular court seat?

I want to return to the 7th District because this is a critical time of transition for the Court.  Between the 2022 and 2026 election cycles, there will be a complete turnover of judges and decades of experience lost.  That is why my almost 18 years of appellate judicial experience is needed; to lead the next generation of judges on the 7th District. If I am elected, I will be able to serve two terms on the Court, I would then be leaving the court in seasoned hands.

I also want to return in order to build on some of the programs and innovations I had a hand in creating.  A particular goal is to use the technology the court put in place during the pandemic to expand the Court’s back to school program.  In addition to continuing to have hearings at high schools throughout the district to facilitate civics education, we can offer more schools the opportunity to see court hearings by streaming them to the schools, again, to enhance students’ civic education.