Governor - 2018 > Bill O’Neill-Governor; Chantelle Lewis-Lt. Governor

Bill O'Neill-Governor; Chantelle Lewis-Lt. Governor


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Meet Bill

Bill O’Neill has spent a lifetime fighting for Ohioans.

Bill served ten years on the 11th District Court of Appeals from 1997 to 2007. He is a graduate of Ohio University, Cleveland Marshall College of Law and Huron School of Nursing. Before being elected and re-elected to the Court of Appeals, he was an Assistant Attorney General for the State of Ohio from 1984 to 1996. He also sat by assignment on the Supreme Court of Ohio at the request of the Chief Justice.

Bill s a retired Lieutenant Colonel in the United States Army and was awarded the Bronze Star for his service in Vietnam. Before being sworn in as Justice, Bill worked as a Registered Nurse in the Pediatric Emergency Department of Hillcrest Hospital, an affiliate of the Cleveland Clinic. Mrs. O’Neill died in a car accident in 1995; Justice O’Neill raised his four children as a single parent near Chagrin Falls.

A Story Of Service

Bill’s whole life has been about service. Upon graduation from Ohio University with a degree in Journalism, he found himself on active duty with the United States Army three weeks later. As a young Lieutenant, he served in Vietnam and was awarded the Bronze Star and the Army Commendation Medal. He retired from the Ohio National Guard as a Lieutenant Colonel in 1996. In 2007, Governor Ted Strickland inducted Bill O’Neill into the Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame.

Bill’s work career has been varied and interesting. He has been an apprentice Ironworker (Local 17); worked as a reporter for a small town newspaper (Sandusky Register); a television reporter for a major television station (Channel 4, Columbus); a union organizer for both the Communications Workers of America, AFL-CIO and the Ohio Civil Service Employees Association (OCSEA); a small business owner in Geneva On the Lake; a small town lawyer (Geneva); and a Pediatric Emergency Room Nurse at Hillcrest Hospital.

Bill went to law school on the GI Bill and served as an Assistant Attorney General for the State of Ohio for twelve years before being elected to the 11th District Court of Appeals in 1996. He served two terms as Presiding Judge on the Court and sat by assignment on the Supreme Court of Ohio.

In 2012, Bill was elected to the Ohio Supreme Court after making national headlines with his legendary refusal to accept contributions as a Judge. The slogan “No Money From No Body” landed him on the front page of the Sunday New York Times.

Democrat Bill O’Neill chooses 
Lorain principal Chantelle Lewis as his running mate
By Jeremy Pelzer |

1.09.18 – COLUMBUS, Ohio–Democratic gubernatorial candidate Bill O’Neill on Tuesday unveiled his running mate: Chantelle E. Lewis, a Lorain County elementary school principal and former East Cleveland City Council member.

In a video posted to Facebook, O’Neill called Lewis, a black woman, “bright, articulate, and a success story right out of the American Dream.” In a statement, O’Neill added: “The people of Ohio deserve diversity in their leaders. It doesn’t get any better than this.”

In the announcement video, O’Neill and Lewis lashed out against Ohio’s controversial school-funding system, which the Ohio Supreme Court ruled unconstitutional in 2002 without offering a solution. O’Neill, who’s resigning from the Supreme Court later this month to focus on his campaign, on Tuesday called the state’s education funding process “a tragedy of epic proportions” and said most of his primary opponents have “done nothing” to fix the problem despite serving in the state legislature.

Lewis added, “Let’s be honest here, our Ohio kids are waiting for the state of Ohio to take education seriously.”

Lewis, 42, has a school superintendent’s license, two master’s degrees from Cleveland State University and is currently working on a doctorate in education from Youngstown State University, according to an O’Neill campaign release.

O’Neill is the second Democratic gubernatorial hopeful to name his running mate – state Sen. Joe Schiavoni picked State Board of Education Member Stephanie Dodd as his number-two earlier this month.

Democrat Richard Cordray is expected to reveal his running mate on Wednesday; the other candidates in the race – Connie Pillich, Betty Sutton, Nan Whaley, and (potentially) Dennis Kucinich – have yet to announce their choices for lieutenant governor.

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