Login | June 24, 2018

Meet Akron’s newest ‘People’s Court’ judge

Gov. John R. Kasich appointed Jason T. Adams to fill the Akron Municipal Court seat of Judge Katarina Cook, who was elected to the Summit County Domestic Relations Court. (Photo courtesy of Jason T. Adams/Akron Municipal Court).

Legal News Reporter

Published: March 17, 2017

Jason T. Adams has wanted to be an attorney for as long as he can remember.

Born and raised in West Akron, the 53-year-old also always knew he wanted to practice law in his beloved hometown.

“I love Akron. I always have,” he said. “I even bought my parents’ house.”

On March 1, Adams became the newest judge on the Akron Municipal Court.

Gov. John R. Kasich appointed him to fill the seat of Judge Katarina Cook, who was elected to the Summit County Domestic Relations Court.

“I’m thrilled and honored and appreciate Gov. Kasich’s opportunity. I’m looking forward to it,” Judge Adams said. “I’m learning. I don’t know everything. But with my background, I have confidence I can do a great job.”

After graduating from Firestone High School, Judge Adams received his bachelor’s degree in economics from The University of Akron, where he also graduated from law school.

Prior to becoming judge, he served as a judicial attorney for retired Summit County Common Pleas Judge Judy Hunter and then for current Judge Christine Croce. He also was a Summit County Common Pleas Court magistrate from 2009 until he took the bench.

In addition, Judge Adams was a sole practitioner in Akron from 1996 to 2004 while running a small business called The United Cigar Company.

He is also a former assistant Summit County prosecutor for the child support enforcement agency and civil division.

His other activities include being a board member of the Ahepa National Housing Corp. and the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church. Other memberships include the Ohio State Bar Association, Akron Bar Association and Ohio Magistrates Association.

“I keep pretty busy in the community,” he said.

Prior to taking the bench, Judge Adams prepared by shadowing judges in Stow, Akron and Barberton municipal courts.

“Everyone does things differently,” he said.

Judge Croce said her former judicial attorney will have no problem navigating his own way as a judge.

“Judge Adams’ experience with the common pleas court as a magistrate and judicial attorney, as well as his experience with the Summit County Prosecutor’s Office, makes him well suited for the judiciary,” she said. “Judge Adams will do a great job serving the Akron Municipal Court and its residents.”

Judge Adams is one of six judges who hear an estimated 25,000 cases a year between them.

“I consider municipal court to be a people’s court,” he said. “It’s a good opportunity to intercede in people’s lives and hopefully make a change to improve their lives.”

Judge Adams lives in Akron with his wife, Joanna, a teacher at Akron Public Schools, and their 8-year-old daughter.

Judge Adams’ judicial investiture will be held Mon. March 27 at 4:30 p.m. in the atrium of the Oliver Ocasek Building, 161 S. High St., Akron. An hors d’oeuvres and pastries reception will follow the ceremony.