BOWLING GREEN - Alan Mayberry, longtime Wood County prosecutor, announced yesterday he plans to run next year for the common pleas judgeship held by Charles F. Kurfess.
Judge Kurfess, 71, will retire when his term expires at the end of 2002. In Ohio, judges are prohibited from starting a new term after they turn 70.
Mr. Mayberry, 47, said he is circulating petitions to get his name on the May primary ballot.
A Republican, he is finishing the first year of his fourth term as county prosecutor. “I've thought about it a long time,” he said. “It is a different perspective but one that I think is easily transferrable.”
In late 1998, Mr. Mayberry was in the running for the common pleas judgeship vacated by Donald DeCessna who had resigned, but then-Gov. George Voinovich appointed Perrysburg Mayor Reeve Kelsey to the post. Judge Kelsey was elected to a full, six-year term last year.
“I was interested [in the appointment], and I'm still interested, obviously,” Mr. Mayberry said. “The fact that I did not get that appointment certainly doesn't diminish my interest in looking at the law from this new perspective.
“I prefer to be elected rather than appointed. It just seems to be a cleaner way of doing it. You don't have people that complain about the political process. I've never been appointed to anything; why break the tradition?”
Mr. Mayberry became an assistant prosecutor in 1980 and was chief assistant to Betty Montgomery from 1981 until his election as prosecutor in 1988.
County election officials said they knew of no one else taking out petitions for the judgeship. The filing deadline for all county posts up for election in 2002 is Feb. 21.