The courts impact nearly every aspect of our daily lives and yet most people have little understanding of how the courts work, how judges are selected, or how we can take action to make our courts more fair and impartial. We decided to create a speakers bureau with three goals in mind:

  1. To explain in everyday language how our court system works in Ohio.
  2. To provide a forum for the public to exchange views about common concerns about our justice system.
  3. To motivate citizens to take action to strengthen the independence of our courts.

What we cover

Here are some of the topics that would be covered in a Speakers Bureau presentation

  • Impact of the courts:
    • When and why do we go to court? (personal, societal impacts of the courts)
  • Structure of the courts: Federal vs State, Ohio’s judicial structure
  • How do we select judges? (pros and cons of electing judges)
    • What makes a good judge?
    • What questions can or can’t you ask a judge? Which are most helpful?
    • Where can you go to find out more about judges to help you decide which ones to vote for?
  • “Is justice ever blind?”
    • Judicial independence
    • Racial and class bias
    • Equity vs Equality
    • Mayor’s courts in Ohio
  • Money and influence
    • What does it cost to run for Ohio Supreme Court
    • Recusal
    • Dark money and disclosure
  • Spreading the word about the need for fair courts in Ohio

Potential Audiences for Speakers Bureau Presentations

  • High School Civics Classes
  • Faith Groups
  • Fraternity and Sorority Chapters
  • Book Clubs
  • Indivisible & other activist groups
  • Nonprofit sector
  • Re-entry populations
  • New Americans
  • Neighborhood Clubs
  • Civic Leagues
  • League of Women Voters Chapters
  • Boys and Girls Clubs
  • Urban Leagues