(EDITOR’S NOTE: The Meigs Independent Press does not participate in advertising for or endorsing candidates. The submissions from candidates are a service to the voters and the people of Meigs County. Candidates were invited to write an open letter to the voters. It is published as submitted, unedited.)
Hello, my name is Linda Warner and I am asking for your vote on May 8th to be nominated as the Republican Candidate for Meigs County Common Pleas Court. If elected as your Meigs County Common Pleas Judge, I would be working for ALL of Meigs County. I live here and love here. The safety, security, and fair treatment of each of you is extremely important to me. I would like to tell you a little more about myself, shine some light on why I am the most qualified candidate for this position, and explain why I deserve your vote to be the next Meigs County Common Pleas Judge.
I am a lifelong Meigs County resident, a 1981 Meigs High School graduate, a 1984 Ohio University graduate—where I was recognized as the Outstanding Student Leader of my graduating class, and a 1988 graduate of Capital Law School. I have been licensed to practice law in Ohio since 1988, and West Virginia since 1989.
I am the daughter of Bob and Nora Riggs Eason, and the granddaughter of Perry and Gladys Morgan Riggs. My husband, Jeff Warner, and I have been married since 1984. We are the proud parents of Robert Jay and David Warner, and soon to be proud in-laws to Jessica Cleland. Jeff is the owner and agent for Jeff Warner Insurance in Pomeroy. My brothers are Robbie and Huey Eason, my sisters-in-law are Susan Houchins Eason and Beverly Eason, and my niece and nephew are Amanda Eason and Bostic Eason.
I deserve your vote to be the next Meigs County Common Pleas Court Judge because I am qualified for the job, and I am tough but fair. As Common Pleas Court Judge, I would rely on my 15+ years of judicial experience, giving every case my full attention, keeping the cases moving through the system as quickly as possible—running an efficient court within the allotted budget. The judicial services I have provided over the last decade and a half include: Impartial Hearing Officer for the Ohio Department of Education, covering Southern Ohio; Common Pleas Court Magistrate in the General, Juvenile, and Probate Divisions of Meigs and Gallia Counties; Mayor’s Court Magistrate for the Villages of Pomeroy, Middleport, Rio Grande, and Oak Hill.
At this time, retiring Judge Carson Crow has a talented group of professionals working for him, and I would want to keep each of them on staff. I have not, and will not, promise anyone anything, including any job with the court. I would not need to make room to bring on any new employees. I have been working with the current staff, and would be ready to roll from day one, in a seamless fashion. I will approach each case without prejudice or bias. I will make sure the Common Pleas Court is managed with honesty, integrity, and fairness. I will make sure anyone who is convicted of committing a crime in Meigs County is held accountable and sentenced appropriately. Judicial ethics rules prohibit me from making any particular statement about punishment—sentencing and the like, however, I can tell you I believe in people being held accountable for their crimes. Criminals must face appropriate consequences for their decisions and actions.
I am firmly committed that, as your Common Pleas Court Judge, I would be working for all of Meigs County, not any select group or groups. I have a strong Christian faith, I believe we are all God’s children, and that we all share the same responsibilities in a civilized society. This means I will face and interact with people with civility and respect, but, will also have no difficulty making sure that those who violate laws be corrected and face appropriate sanctions. I am able to look into the eyes of a person who has committed crimes, and make sure justice is done for Meigs County.
I believe that each of us deserves the same protections under the Constitution, and that each of should face the same accountability if violating the law. If anyone violates the law, commits a crime and victimizes others, that person must be punished appropriately—and I have no problem issuing such punishment. I can and will be as tough, or tougher, than any other judge who has been on the Meigs County Bench.
My many years serving as an Assistant Prosecuting Attorney for Meigs County, under Republicans Steve Story and Pat Story, provided me with a broad range of trial experience with serious criminal cases. I also have extensive experience making decisions in some of the most complex, high conflict, and highly emotional domestic relations cases. I would not treat the sensitive family law matters as if they didn’t matter, or were a waste of my time. I realize that when any person comes to court it is probably the most important things going on in that person’s life at the time. I can assure you, I will give all matters appearing before me the attention they deserve.
In addition to my extensive judicial and prosecuting attorney experience, I spent a number of years in private practice with Bernard Fultz, and later with Douglas Little and Jennifer Sheets, handling a broad range of cases including, but not limited to: real estate matters, foreclosures and collections, contract disputes, personal injury, malpractice, employment disputes, municipal law and many other areas of law. I have a strong work ethic, an even temperament, and patience to deal with the variety of cases which must be determined by the Common Pleas Court. I believe these characteristics will serve me well as your Common Pleas Judge.
I have enjoyed the time I’ve spent campaigning throughout our community—from attending meetings and speaking to local organizations, to door-to-door campaigning, to delivering requested campaign signs from supporters throughout the county, to supporting a variety of fundraisers. I genuinely enjoy interacting with the great variety of people I would serve if elected as your Common Pleas Court Judge.
During the campaign many have asked about my stance on firearms. I have very strong feelings about our 2nd amendment rights. I proudly support, and am a member of, the NRA. I believe that one should only use a firearm with proper and frequent safe handling training, as well as regular practice of handling. It is important that no one in our community infringe on our right to bear arms. Hunting is a way of life in Meigs County and should be preserved, again, so long as those hunting comply with the hunting regulations. Our family has hunted for years, and we allow a small group of non-family to hunt on our property, with written permission. In our rural community, there are also times when law enforcement officers may not be able to respond immediately when we find ourselves in a dangerous situation. I have my concealed carry permit, and believe that sometimes, the only way to stop a bad person with a gun is for a good person to have a gun.
It is important that you know I am committed to this community through actions, not just words. And, my commitment is nothing new. If you review my professional timeline and information about public involvement on my website, warnerforjudge.com, you will get an idea of some of my community involvement. I am particularly proud of the work I have done through the years for those who may have special needs, such as serving multiple terms on the Meigs County Board of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities (now Developmental Disabilities Board), serving on the board of Serenity House, working for and making decisions on the Meigs Metropolitan Housing Board, and making decisions as an Impartial Hearing Officer for the Ohio Department of Education, conducting hearings and deciding cases under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Our family has been involved in the donation of, incorporation of, and much of the financing for the establishment of the Angela Eason Memorial Park in Chester, Ohio—a place we created in memory of our sister, to be shared with and enjoyed by the entire community.
My involvement in our community has been broad and long. I am a leader, and my long history of community service has certainly played a role in strengthening my leadership abilities. In 2001, after receiving the regional award for Outstanding Community Leader Under 40, I was given the the Ohio Statewide Award, which recognized me as the Outstanding Attorney Community Leader under age 40. Although I am now well over 40, I continue to be committed in many community groups from church to civic to charitable. Currently, I proudly serve on the Meigs County Community Fund Board, the Karr Aanestad K-9 Foundation Board, the SEPTA Correctional Facility Governing Board, and the Ohio Supreme Court Domestic Violence Advisory Committee, to name a few. Wherever these roles take me, I proudly present myself as a Meigs County native whose heart lies within this great community.
When I’m not working, I enjoy spending time every week with my church families. I enjoy music, and it is my pleasure to provide piano and organ accompaniment for my congregations and choirs. As time permits, I also enjoy participating in local community theatre and the Big Bend Community Band.
On May 8th, Vote for Linda Warner for Common Pleas Judge, and, TOGETHER, we can and will build a stronger community. I am dedicated to Meigs County—past, present and future. I am from Meigs, For Meigs, and Forever Meigs!