Enquirer Voter Guide

Judge - First District Court of Appeals of Ohio (Comm. 2-9-19)

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    Pierre Bergeron

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    Charles Miller

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Biographical Information

Why are you running?

What makes you the best candidate?

Campaign Phone (513) 225-5860
Age 45
City/town Cincinnati
Education/Degrees BA, Centre College; JD, University of Virginia School of Law
Community Involvement Past President, Federal Bar Association (local chapter); President, Cincinnati Bar Association Court of Appeals Committee; Former Vestry member, St. Timothy's Episcopal Church; Life Member, Sixth Circuit Judicial Conference; Founder, Appellate Litigation Clinic at Univ. of Cincinnati College of Law; Taught Appellate Practice at UC College of Law
Endorsements Please check for latest endorsements.
Campaign Message Transparency and accountability -- the courts should be more responsive to the citizens of Hamilton County.
I have practiced nearly 20 years in appellate courts across the country. This experience has shown me what works and what doesn’t in appellate courts. I am running for this seat because I believe that I could help bring positive change to the Court, making it more transparent and responsive to the citizens of Hamilton County.

We need to eliminate long-standing restrictive rules that prevent a party’s voice from being fully heard by the Court. No other court in the state has similar restrictions. Similarly, a substantial percentage of the Court’s decisions have historically been rendered with 2-3 page entries that often leaving the parties in the dark as to why the Court reached its decision. Win or lose, a party deserves a complete explanation for the Court’s decision so that it knows that the Court seriously considered its case.

Basic reforms like these will help promote public confidence in the judiciary, and and reinforce the independence of the judiciary.

My experience as an appellate lawyer handling more than a hundred appeals in my career makes me uniquely qualified to both serve and to help accomplish the change that is needed for our Court. I served as a law clerk for a federal appellate judge in Cincinnati, and then practiced at a law firm where I now lead the Appellate and Supreme Court Practice Group. I am the only candidate here who has argued (and won) before the United States Supreme Court. I am a recognized leader in appellate practice, and I was recently named Cincinnati’s Appellate Lawyer of the Year by my peers.

I also have a deep understanding of the challenges facing our criminal justice system through my pro bono work. I have handled several appeals with the Ohio Innocence Project that led to the exoneration of wrongfully-convicted individuals. The Court's work profoundly impacts Hamilton County citizens, and I will bring independence, fairness, and experience, along with a tireless work ethic, to the position.
Campaign Phone (513) 477-5657
Age 42
City/town Cincinnati
Education/Degrees J.D., Boston University; B.A., The Ohio State University
Community Involvement Ohio Board of Professional Conduct (Commissioner); Ohio Court of Appeals Judges Association; The Ohio Judicial Conference; Federalist Society; American Enterprise Institute Leadership Network, Ohio Bar Association; Cincinnati Bar Association; St. Gertrude Parish; Hamilton County Public Defender Commission (Past Commissioner); Mt. Auburn International Academy (Past Board President); Groveport Madison School Board (past member); Leadership Council (past Scholarship Chair); United Way Emerging Leaders (past member)
Endorsements Fraternal Order of Police, Queen City Lodge 69
Campaign Message Good Judges Deserve to Stay. I am honored and privileged to serve as your judge on the First District Court of Appeals. I have heard hundreds of appeals from all trial courts in Hamilton County– Common Pleas, Probate, Juvenile, Domestic Relations & Municipal. The topics have included death penalty, felony, misdemeanor, zoning, collective bargaining, constitutional questions, leases, foreclosures, contracts, arbitration, sexual predator registration, parental rights, juvenile delinquency, adoption, administrative law, and many others. I am also honored to have been selected by the Chief Justice to sit on the Supreme Court of Ohio as a visiting judge. I am one of only seven judges on the Ohio Board of Professional Conduct, the body responsible for disciplining attorneys and judges.
My career has centered on serving you in our courts. I am the incumbent judge and have decided over 400 cases. I sat on the Ohio Supreme Court as a visiting judge. I am one of 7 judges in Ohio on the board responsible for recommending discipline for attorneys and judges. Early in my career, I clerked for Justice Maureen O'Connor, helping her review thousands of cases. As an attorney, I argued cases in the Ohio Supreme Court, and tried many cases.

I am passionate about my work. In my written decisions, I strive to fully articulate and address the strengths of each party’s case–particularly that of the losing party. I do this so the parties understand that their arguments have been heard and to help the lower courts best understand exactly what our court says the law is on a given topic. I am honored that the Ohio State Bar Association has selected several of my opinions for publication.
I honor and respect my roll as a judge. I ensure each party is fully heard and decide cases fairly. I do not legislate from the bench.

I believe our courts should be accessible. Accordingly, I have spearheaded and participated in efforts to take our court to the community and bring community members to us, so that the public can understand what happens at the court of appeals, which I sometimes compare to a sports “replay booth.”

As an attorney, I found the court's rules regarding briefing to restrictive. In 2017, I commission a review of our court rules by local attorneys. I'm proud that our rules have been modified to allow additional briefing.

Finally, and more substantively, I have written opinions stating that parties must be afforded meaningful rights to appeal to our court to correct errors from the trial courts.

I am a judge who enjoys being a judge. I will never be an activist in a robe. I humbly ask for your vote.
If you need any help as a candidate, please email Carl Weiser at