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William G. Batchelder, III (born July 30, 1943) is an American lawyer, judge, and politician from the U.S. state of Ohiomarker. He is a Republican.

He is the husband of Judge Alice Batchelder, currently a federal judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.

Early life and education

Batchelder was born in Medina, Ohiomarker and grew up in the town, graduated from Medina High School. He earned his undergraduate degree in history at Ohio Wesleyan Universitymarker and his J.D. from the Ohio State University College of Law. In law school he was a member of the moot court team.

Military service, legal career, and state House service

Batchelder was elected to the Ohio House of Representatives while on active duty with the United States Army. He served in the office of the Judge Advocate General at the headquarters of the Third Army in Fort McPhersonmarker, Georgiamarker; he was honorably discharged in 1974.

Batchelder practiced law in Medina, Ohio for 31 years with the law firm of Williams & Batchelder. His practice focused on personal injury defense litigation, corporate law, probate, and estate planning.

Batchelder also served in the Ohio House of Representatives for over 30 years, serving as chairman of the Joint Committee on Ethics and Vice-Chairman of the Criminal Justice Committee, as well as ranking member at various times on the House Judiciary Committee and House Financial Institutions Committee. From 1995 to 1998, Batchelder served as Speaker Pro Tempore of the House and Vice-Chairman of the Reference and Rules Committee.

During the Savings and Loan Crisis in the 1980s, Batchelder worked with Democratic Governor Dick Celeste to draft legislation to save depositors' savings at stricken Savings and loan associations, causing Celeste to thank Batchelder during his State of the State speech. During the pay-to-play scandal of the mid 1990s, as chair of the Joint Committee on Ethics, Batchelder referred both the Republican President of the Ohio Senate and the Democratic Ohio Speaker of the House to a prosecutor; both were convicted. He is the only ethics committee chair ever to have referred the heads of both legislative chambers to a prosecutor.

Judicial service

Batchelder was elected to the Medina Countymarker Court of Common Pleas and served briefly on that court before Governor Bob Taft appointed him to the Ninth District Ohio Court of Appeals. Batchelder was elected to the appellate bench in November 2000. He served as presiding judge from January 2000 to December 2001.

Batchelder has also been selected by the Supreme Court of Ohiomarker to serve on the Ohio Board of Bar Examiners. He is the recipient of the Ohio State Bar Public Service Award and an honorary graduate of the University of Akron School of Law. Batchelder is currently a member of the Criminal Justice Advisory Board, Office of Criminal Justice Services, Ohio Court of Appeals Association and the Ohio, Akron, Lorain County, Medina County, and Wayne County Bar Associations. He has also served as an adjunct professor of law at the University of Akron School of Law and at the College of Urban Affairs of Cleveland State Universitymarker.

Return to state House

After leaving the bench in 2005, Batchelder was elected to the state House of Representatives in 2006, defeating Jack Schira. [154594]

In 2007, Batchelder was named chairman of the House Insurance Committee. He also serves on the Financial Institutions, Real Estate and Securities, Judiciary, and Public Utilities committees.

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