Change Address

VOTE411 Voter Guide

Judge of the Lucas County Court of Common Pleas, General - Unexpired Term Ending 1/3/2023

The Lucas County Court of Common Pleas is the trial court of general jurisdiction. This means that it hears felony cases as well as civil disputes where the amount of money in controversy exceeds $500 and also has exclusive jurisdiction over civil cases exceeding $10,000.Salary: $140,550Term expires 1/3/2023

Click a candidate icon to find more information about the candidate. To compare two candidates, click the "compare" button. To start over, click a candidate icon.

  • Alfonso J. Gonzalez Unexpired

  • Candidate picture

    Lori Olender Unexpired

Biographical Information

List your judicial experience (courts and years)

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

Why are you running for this particular court seat?

Age 51
Residence Maumee
Education B.S. in Criminal Justice from B.G.S.U., M.P.A. from B.G.S.U., and J.D. from University of Toledo, College of Law
Social Media General Retain Judge Alfonso “Jess” Gonzalez – Facebook
Work Experience Planner for 2 years, Attorney for 15 years, Magistrate for 4 years, Judge since March 18, 2019
Family Married with 1 child
Affiliations Member of O.S.B.A., T.B.A., Lucas County Bar Assn, Judicial Conference, Association of Common Pleas Judges, Knight of Columbus
Endorsements Local 50, Building & Trades PAC
Lucas County Common Pleas, Domestic Relations Magistrate – 4 years Lucas County Common Pleas, General Division – Since March 18, 2019
I was a private attorney for approximately 15 years practicing in general civil litigation and criminal misdemeanor cases. I handled many areas of civil litigation which constitutes a majority of a judge’s docket. The judges’ caseloads are around sixty percent civil litigation.

I also had substantial experience doing guardian ad litem work for the courts in domestic relations and juvenile cases. It gave me the opportunity to interact with litigants and their families in a closer fashion. This gave me an increased perspective few attorneys get in representing their clients. I also clerked for a judge for three years which gave me the ins and outs of court administration which served me well starting as a magistrate.

I believe my private practice experience coupled with the 5 years of judicial experience has prepared me well for the position as a judge in Common Pleas Court.
In short, I absolutely love this job! I was appointed on March 18, 2019 to the seat I am running for. In the nearly one year as a judge, I have learned the intricacies of the criminal felony docket. I have also been introduced to complex areas of civil law that I had not practiced in.

Being a judge in Common Pleas Court is truly a busy and, at times, stressful occupation. However, I thoroughly enjoy the dynamic nature and educational process the position brings. Being a judge also presents the unique opportunity to make a difference in the community. As a magistrate I was exposed to the serious issues of opiate addiction and mental health in the legal system. It impacts the ability of attorneys to adequately represent their clients, and the courts in the administration of justice.

I am particularly concerned with how mental health has taken a backseat to the publicity of the opiate epidemic. I personally feel that mental health is as big of an issue if not larger. I hope to join forces with Judge Navarre in the creation of a specialty court for mental health. It is sorely needed as the community lacks the resources and wherewithal to address the issue comprehensively.
Age 50
Residence Toledo
Education J.D. University of Toledo
Social Media General Facebook: Lori Olender for Judge
Work Experience Prosecutor since January 1998, 1994-1997 Public Defender’s Office
Family Single
Affiliations Congregational
Endorsements Toledo Police Patrolman’s Association, others pending
Bar Association Ratings Not yet completed
None
I started in Toledo Municipal Court as a Public Defender Intern during law school. After I passed the bar (May 1997) I was hired as a staff attorney for the Public Defender’s Office in Lucas County Juvenile Court. In January of 1998 I was hired by the Lucas County Prosecutor’s Office. I began in the Court of Common Pleas General Division as the Child Victim Prosecutor. In that role, I handled all cases of felony abuse on children. I handled every case from investigation to Grand Jury, and finally all the way to trial. I practiced in all 10 courtrooms of the General Division and tried close to 70 jury trials. In 2007 I was promoted to Deputy Chief in charge of the Juvenile Division of the Prosecutor’s Office. I have been in that role ever since. As Deputy Chief, I am in charge of training new prosecutors on the law and trial skills so that they may be promoted to the General Trial Division. I also take on a full caseload of my own. I have charged and successfully certified to the adult division many juveniles charged with Murder, Felonious Assault, Aggravated Robbery, and Rape.
I have spent my career protecting the public. First in Adult Court and now in Juvenile. I want to continue that work from the bench. My career has taught me that protecting the public does not just come from a sentence of incarceration. Treatment and other alternatives are at times the best way to keep a person from future recidivism. I have handled thousands of criminal cases in my career. I am well versed in the rules of evidence and current case law. Although I have not worked in the Civil arena, I do my best to keep up with the case law in that area as well. As someone who has been in front of most of the bench in Lucas County I will be able to bring the best from every Judge that I have practiced in front of as well as try to avoid the pitfalls of those that came before me. Finally, I believe I have the temperament to fairly and impartially judge each case on its specific merits. At the same time, I will be respectful to everyone that comes in front of me and run the most efficient docket that I can.