Friday, October 19, 2001

Warren Co. Judge Fedders won't run again

By Sheila McLaughlin
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        LEBANON — After more than three decades presiding over criminal and civil proceedings on the Warren County Common Pleas bench, Judge P. Daniel Fedders said Thursday he will not seek re-election next year.

        A colleague — the county's first and only domestic-relations judge — immediately announced he would seek the six-year position.

        Judge James Flannery, domestic-relations judge for 15 years, told the Enquirer he will file by year's end to run in the May 2002 Republican primary election for Judge Fedders' seat, which expires the following February.

        “It's a logical part of your career that you don't want to do the same thing forever. There is nothing I'm unhappy about here,” said Judge Flannery, 52, who also was a county prosecutor for 13 years.

        “I'd never run against Judge Fedders, certainly. But, he's decided his career is coming to an end, and I want to see the job done well.”

        Judge Fedders, 64, said he decided within the past few weeks not to run again because he did not want to complete another six-year term. He told his colleagues two weeks ago he was leaning toward retirement.

        He told his staff of the decision Wednesday. Judge Fedders said he will finish out his current term, which expires Feb. 10, 2003.

        In an Oct. 15 letter sent on court stationery this week to members of the Warren County Bar Association, Judge Fedders said:

        “My health is good. I still enjoy the job. I would probably prefer to continue another two or three years... It would not be fair to you or to the citizens of the county were I to run for another term knowing that I do not intend to complete it if re-elected.”

        He urged interested attorneys to start making plans to run to replace him. So far, Judge Flannery's is the only name that has surfaced.

        “It's like I kicked over an ant hill or something,” Judge Fedders said of the numerous calls he received Thursday from local lawyers who expressed surprise over the announcement.

        . He was appointed to the bench in 1971 to replace Warren C. Young, who became an appeals- court judge.

        “I think he does an excellent job, said John Quinn, an attorney who has represented hundreds of clients before Judge Fedders. “I would hope the bar association would pass a resolution asking him to reconsider.”


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