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Published: Saturday, 10/30/2004

Court of Appeals: Longtime judges compete for seat

Two judges with more than 40 years of judicial experience are contesting for a seat on Ohio's 6th District Court of Appeals.

Robert Christiansen and William Skow, who have been Lucas County Common Pleas judges since 1983 and 1986, respectively, are seeking a full-six year term.

The seat currently is held by Judge Richard Knepper, who declined to run again after seven years on the court.

Judge Christiansen, 56, was appointed to Common Pleas Court in 1983 and elected to the unexpired term for the office in 1984. He was re-elected in 1986, 1992, and 1998. He was appointed to Toledo Municipal Court in 1981 but lost the election for the seat in the same year.

Judge Christiansen's term on Common Pleas Court is expiring. He chose to run for the appeals court rather than his current seat.

Judge Skow, 63, was a Toledo Municipal Court judge from 1983 to March, 1986, when he was appointed to Common Pleas Court. He was elected to the unexpired term that same year and re-elected to full terms in 1988, 1994, and 2000.

Judge Christiansen, who received his law degree from the University of Toledo in 1972, claims to have among the smallest pending case docket of the court's 10 judges and has been tough in the sentencing of criminals.

Judge Skow is a 1966 graduate of the University of Michigan law school.

He touts his strong reputation for legal scholarship and descriptive opinions, some of which have been consistently cited in legal briefings.

Both judges were private attorneys prior to their judgeships. Judge Skow was chief legislative assistant for a congressman from 1977 to 1981.

The court hears appeals from decisions made in lower courts in Lucas, Erie, Fulton, Huron, Ottawa, Sandusky, Williams, and Wood counties.

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