MIAMI COUNTY — Miami County welcomed two new court officials on Friday.
Former Miami County Municipal Court Judge Elizabeth Gutmann swore in new Common Pleas Court Judge Stacy Wall, with her family beside her, before a full courtroom of supporters.
Miami County Prosecutor Tony Kendell also swore in Scott Altenburger, with his wife Kay by his side, as Miami County Juvenile and Probate judge.
Judge Christopher Gee retired from the bench and will continue to serve as a magistrate in Common Pleas Court. Altenburger ran for the office to fill the unexpired term of Judge W. McGregor “Greg” Dixon Jr.
Their families helped don their judicial robes for the first time in their position and thanked their supporters.
Wall, former law director and prosecutor for the city of Piqua, shared the “Starfish” story. The moral of the story is making a difference one small step at a time.
“I am honored to be able to serve the citizens of Miami County and while not every issue may be solved, I will listen to every plaintiff, every defendant, every witness, every victim and hope to make a difference like the boy strived for with each starfish,” said Wall, then thanking her family for their support.
Piqua Mayor Kazy Hinds said, “We will miss her, but we are thrilled you are still here in Miami County and you’ll continue to do what you have done for the citizens of Piqua for the citizens of Miami County.”
Wall graduated with distinction from Ohio Northern University with a bachelor of arts degree in Philosophy and Political Science and also graduated in the top 25 percent of her class at ONU Law School. She and her husband, Richard, a tax manager, are the parents of three children: Ryan, Kayla, and Samantha.
Judge Altenburger thanked his wife of 31 years Kay, his daughters and his father for attending and being part of the ceremony.
“Having an event like this gives me an opportunity to thank the people who have supported me. Anybody that has worn a robe or sought elected office, they know there’s just so many people behind them trying to get them to where they are,” he said.
Altenburger shared his two guiding principles of being impartial and fair and following the Ohio Revised Code and casting aside personal prejudice.
Altenburger also shared three goals he plans for the office: accountability, accessibility, and fiscal responsibility. He has been a magistrate and later appointed chief magistrate of the Miami County Court of Common Pleas, General Division, since May 1995.
He has been married for 31 years to Kay Altenburger, treasurer/CFO for Milton-Union Exempted Village Schools. They have two daughters: Dr. Lauren Altenburger, a graduate of OSU, and Kristen Altenburger, Ph.D. candidate at Stanford University.