Toledo Legal News - News For Judge Pietrykowski, his family history is a chance to leave his own legacy

 

photo of Judge Mark PietrykowskiAppeals Court Judge Mark Pietrykowski is a man with a pedigree. His family is an institution in Toledo. His father was a Federal Magistrate. His uncle served as Clerk of Courts. One great uncle served as Parish Priest to St. Hedwig’s, another was on the city counsel during the 1930’s. Former Toledo Mayor John Carey, is a relative of his. His mother sat on the school board, was a member of the city counsel and served as vice mayor. The first hit when googling the name ‘Pietrykowski’ brings up a web site about the law firm founded by his grandfather.

You probably had a very different childhood than Judge Mark Pietrykowski. Unlike him, FBI agents probably never regularly visited to your house asking your father to sign search warrants. Also, if you wanted to call a friend, you probably could. “My mom was very active in the City. There were many phone calls from constituents all the time. This was in the days before call waiting and cell phones. There were a lot of calls from friends that never got through.” You probably also had a bit more free time than the Judge. “About the time I was old enough to recognize what was going on, I was always hearing about campaigns and going to events and things like that.”

Still, the Judge’s childhood wasn’t all that hard. An active boy who wrestled in high school at St. John’s, Pietrykowski enjoyed the family trips out on their boat every summer. “Back then, towards the end of June the courts wouldn’t hold trials because it was so hot and there wasn’t any air-conditioning. So we went boating in the summer and it was a good get-a-way.”

Judge Pietrykowski also got a bug for history and politics from all the elections that surrounded him as a child. When he went off to Notre Dame for college he studied government and international relations, a major with a particular emphasis on history.

After his years away from Ohio, the Judge decided to return home and study law at Ohio Northern. “Becoming a lawyer wasn’t preordained or predestined, but it was in the family and something I grew up with. In fact, my father used to joke that I could either be a lawyer like him or a priest like his uncle.”

Upon obtaining his J.D., Judge Pietrykowski returned to Toledo proper and began working as a clerk for Judge Walter Krasniewski, a Northern District of Ohio Bankruptcy Court (he also worked shoulder to shoulder with current Bankruptcy Court judge Richard Speer). “That was my first experience working on that side of the Bench. I came to really appreciate what the Courts and the judge’s do. I came to really understand how much preparation judges put in, even though you might never know it.”

Judge Pietrykowski left the Bankruptcy Court after two years and began working at the law firm founded by his grandfather, William Finn, now known as Manahan, Bamman Pietrykowski & Delaney. He would work there for 18 years before becoming an Appeals Court judge. “Since I was on the bottom of the totem pole at the firm, I was given cases that sent me all over Northwest Ohio. And one thing I really learned from that was to get to know all the clerks and bailiffs. Each court does things a little different and it was always best to talk to the Judges’ bailiffs and the court clerks to figure out how things were done. Sometimes the most important person is the clerk who takes the filing.”

While working as an attorney, Judge Pietrykowski continued his family’s tradition of public service. In 1985 he became a city council member and held that position until 1992. For two years between 1987 and 1989 he served as vice-mayor to the city council and in 1992 began his seven year tenure as a (the?) Lucas County Commissioner.

It was his work on the city council and as a (the?) County Commissioner that convinced Pietrykowski to run for the judiciary. “I had worked with the city counsel and the county commission and had known for some years that being a judge was something to consider. I felt that I already knew quite a bit about the district. And I knew I wanted to run, rather than seek an appointment. I felt that running would be a better way to get in. So when a judicial seat became open in the Appeals Court, I ran.”

Judge Pietrykowski was elected in 1998 and began serving in February of 1999. When he first began he, and the other Appeals judges, worked out of the old building. By then it was far too small for the Appeals staff. “The old building was only 6,000 square feet. We literally had paperwork and filing stacked out in the hallways. There was no room to store anything. I mean, once an appeal is decided all the case filings return to the Clerk of Court’s office, but while we’re looking at it it’s in the building and we have to put it somewhere. And there was just no place for it to go.” Luckily for the Northern Ohio District, Judge Pietrykowski was able to bring everything he had learned as a councilman and commissioner to the planning meetings and really helped design the new building.

In his spare time Pietrykowski can either be found out sailing on the lake with his family, wife Janet and their three children, or at home making stained glass; a hobby he’s recently gotten into. Unfortunately this former lawyer cum council member cum county commissioner cum turned Appeals Judge doesn’t have as much free time as he would like. He’s too busy living up to his family’s history and making them proud.

Michael Davisson, Toledo Legal News Staff Writer

5 smart steps to preserving brain health

(BPT) Everyone knows aerobic exercise gets the heart pumping and lifting weights keeps muscles strong. But when it comes to keeping the brain healthy, most people are unsure what to do.

Date Published: March 28, 2017

More flexibility sought in Ohio's bail system

A special committee of the Ohio Criminal Sentencing Commission presented its recommendations to reform Ohio bail and pretrial services at the commission's quarterly meeting on Thursday, March 16th.

Date Published: March 28, 2017

Toledo finishes tied for seventh place at Mission Inn Spring Spectacular

Toledo finished tied for seventh place with a score of 918 (304-306-308) on Sunday, March 19, at George Mason's Mission Inn Spring Spectacular. The two-day tourney was played at the El Campeón Course (Par-72, 6,966 Yards) at the Mission Inn Golf Resort.

Date Published: March 28, 2017

County’s reappraisal of Cincinnati Coca-Cola plant stands

The Hamilton County auditor’s $14 million appraisal of a Cincinnati Coca-Cola bottling plant will stand despite the owner’s contention that the property is worth only about $8.55 million, the Ohio Supreme Court ruled recently.

Date Published: March 27, 2017

Fact: 529 plans cover required college costs

All parents have big dreams for their children. Most of those plans include a college education. Forward-thinking parents look at their child’s future college costs and prepare for it by contributing to 529 college savings plan. 529 accounts are an excellent alternative to student loan debt.

Date Published: March 27, 2017

Proposed bill aims to reduce abuse of elderly in Ohio

Outdated definitions and insufficient reporting requirements have prompted a southwest Ohio lawmaker to propose a legislative measure to enhance Ohio's adult protective services to protect some of the state's most vulnerable citizens.

Date Published: March 27, 2017

Rockets land 7 on Academic All-MAC Team

The Toledo women's track & field team landed seven student-athletes on the Indoor Academic All-MAC Team, announced by the league office last Tuesday. Sally Frank, Nautica Hill, Alexa Jarrett, Maddie Jarrett, Alissa Jenkins, Gabby Jett and Emily Wyrick received the honor for the Rockets.

Date Published: March 27, 2017

American Legion Auxiliary aims to improve veterans' lives

(BPT) Eva Wallace never enlisted in the U.S. military, has never been on active duty and never endured life-altering injuries protecting American freedoms. However, as a military spouse she has found another important way to serve our country - advocating for veterans' rights.

Date Published: March 24, 2017

Lawmakers seek to reduce food stamp, Medicaid fraud

Protecting the most vulnerable Ohioans and vital taxpayer dollars is paramount to a plan put forth to reduce fraud in the Buckeye State's food stamp and Medicaid benefits programs.

Date Published: March 24, 2017

Treasurer Josh Mandel celebrates and promotes transparency

Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel was proud last week to celebrate National Sunshine Week, an annual initiative launched by the American Society of News Editors designed to educate the public on freedom of information and highlight the importance of an open and transparent government.

Date Published: March 24, 2017

UT’s Kawil and Kuvanun earn MAC Co-Women’s Golfer of the Week honors

Sophomores Pimchanok Kawil (Chiang Mai, Thailand) and Pinyada Kuvanun (Khonkean, Thailand) were named the Mid-American Conference Co-Women's Golfer of the Week on Wednesday after tying for second place at the Red Rocks Invitational on March 4-5. Kuvanun is receiving the honor for the second time in her collegiate career, while Kawil is being honored for the first time.

Date Published: March 24, 2017

Battelle subcontractor lands $38.6 million Navy contract

The U.S. Navy recently awarded the five-year $38.6 million contract to Battelle and subcontractor Veracity Forecasting and Analysis for improvements to a forecast analytic system used to synchronize aircraft capabilities.

Date Published: March 23, 2017