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DeBacker seeks spot on city court

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Toledo lawyer Gretchen DeBacker filed petitions Friday with the Lucas County Board of Elections to run for the Toledo Municipal Court seat occupied by Judge Michael Goulding.

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Ms. DeBacker, 43, of 2365 Densmore Dr. is a Democrat making her first run for public office.

Ms. DeBacker is the only candidate to file for the seat, which has a six-year term. Judge Goulding said Friday he intends to seek re-election. However, he is one of three lawyers recommended to Gov. John Kasich for appointment to a vacancy on Lucas County Common Pleas Court and said if he receives the appointment, he would accept it.

Judge Goulding, a Republican, was recommended, along with Domestic Relations Judge David Lewandowski and attorney Kenneth Phillips, for the vacancy for the seat formerly held by Judge James Jensen. He was elected to the Ohio 6th District Court of Appeals.

Ms. DeBacker said her family moved to the Toledo area when she was in fourth grade. She is a graduate of Notre Dame Academy and Bowling Green State University. With her family, she started and ran Sufficient Grounds, a local chain of coffee houses that included a bakery, catering, and a management company with a total of 120 employees.

She got her law degree from the University of Toledo and passed the bar in 2004. She said she has been in private practice since, but worked part-time for six years for the Lucas County Treasurer’s office. Last year, she was fined $100 by the Ohio Supreme Court for failing to comply with a continuing legal education requirement.

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