Meet Mary Jane

Mary Jane Trapp, former Judge of the 11th District Court of Appeals, is recognized for her distinguished legal knowledge and experience.  Trapp has over 35 years in trial and appellate practice and is a leader at the state and national level on issues of administration of justice and legal reform.  Trapp served for six years on the Ohio Supreme Court Rules Advisory Committee and its appellate rules subcommittee.  Trapp, a past President of the Ohio State Bar, received the 2009 Founders’ Award from the Ohio Women’s Bar Association, the Ohio Legal Assistance Foundation 2011 President’s Award and is the first Ohio appellate court judge to receive the prestigious Toll Fellowship.

Trapp reflected on what brought her back to the campaign trail. “Thirty-six years ago I took my oath as an attorney-at-law. In taking that oath, I promised to support our constitution and faithfully follow the law. As an attorney, I work in the trenches of our justice system helping ordinary people with their extraordinary problems, representing working families, children at risk, and small business owners in courts across the state from small claims court to the Supreme Court of Ohio.”

“As much as I enjoy my work as a litigator, I found my calling as a judge. The position gave me a chance to bring my years of courtroom experience and my passion for the law to a position of public service dedicated to ensuring the safety of our families and preserving a fair and impartial judicial system. Never a day goes by that I do not appreciate the enormous impact that court decisions have on people’s lives.”

While on the court of appeals from 2007 to 2013, Trapp authored more than 500 opinions and heard more than 1150 appeals, most notably the opinion upholding the constitutionality of the new form of government in Cuyahoga County. During her tenure she served a two-year term as the court’s presiding/administrative judge in 2009 and 2010, after having served as its administrative judge in 2008. She also served as a visiting judge on the Supreme Court of Ohio and on the Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, and Ninth Appellate Districts by assignment of the Chief Justice.

Trapp is a principal with Thrasher, Dinsmore & Dolan LPA in Cleveland and Chardon, Ohio and lives in Russell Township with her husband, Mike Apicella. Mary Jane has four step-children and three step-grandchildren.