A familiar face will return to the courtrooms of the Fourth District Court of Appeals. Voters in the district that covers 14 counties gave Matthew McFarland a victory over his challenger, Valarie Gerlach. While the totals were not in at press time, it was apparent that McFarland had won all 14 counties including Athens County which he did not carry in the last election.
“We’re very grateful for the voters putting their trust and support in me for a third term,” McFarland said at the Scioto County Board of Elections. “We had a great team effort in every county. It takes a team effort and we have a great team at home. My family is very supportive. We had great volunteers and effort from each county throughout the district.”
McFarland is a graduate of Wheelersburg High School; Capital University (cum laude); received his J.D. from Capital University Law School (Order of the Barristers); Admitted to the Bar Association for the state of Ohio in 1992.
McFarland has served as a visiting Judge on the Supreme Court of Ohio and on the 10th District Court of Appeals. He previously served as the Magistrate in Scioto County Common Pleas Court Probate/Juvenile Division, and as Chairman Ohio Association of Magistrates, Juvenile Section. Prior to serving on the bench, McFarland was a Scioto County Assistant Prosecutor and acted as Special Counsel for the Ohio Attorney General. He also was a Licking County Assistant County Prosecutor and had his own private practice.
McFarland is an adjunct professor for Shawnee State University, and formerly taught constitutional law at Capital University. He has served on the Wheelersburg Local Board of Education.
Although there was joy in the McFarland camp, there was also a bittersweet atmosphere as he reflected back on his biggest supporter, his father, Mac McFarland who had passed away. McFarland wept as he talked about his father’s
“When you lose your dad it’s just a very very difficult thing,” McFarland said. “He was such a force in the community, the county, and really in our region. I wouldn’t be successful but for the good Lord blessing me and I am very grateful for the blessings he has bestowed on me. Dad, he just knew people and he was a good public servant and he taught me how to be a public servant.”
Currently two Scioto County residents are on the Fourth District Court of Appeals. In addition to McFarland, Marie Hoover also serves on that court.
Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.