At a Glance
- Career History: Director of the Center for Families and Children (1999-2006), Ohio Attorney General (1991-1995), Ohio state Senator (1983-1990), Ohio state Representative (1981-1982)
- Birthday: August 7, 1951
- Residence: Shaker Heights, Ohio
- Alma Mater: B.A., Oberlin College (1973); J.D., Case Western Reserve University (1976)
- Spouse: Peggy Zone Fisher
Path To Power
Raised in Cleveland, Fisher graduated from Oberlin College in 1973 before earning a law degree from Case Western Reserve University in 1976. Fisher credits a childhood trip to Washington during the Camelot era and the 1970 shootings at Kent State as seminal moments in his decision to pursue public service.
In 1980, he successfully ran for the state House; he moved to the state Senate just two years later. In the legislature, Fisher played a major role in passing Ohio's first law increasing penalties for hate crimes; he also pushed legislation bolstering resources available to search for missing children.
As attorney general in 1990, Fisher focused on crimes involving children. He also urged courts to rescind Gov. Richard F. Celeste's (D-Ohio) decision to commute seven death penalty sentences in his final days in office; Fisher, who reversed his earlier opposition to the capital punishment during the 1990 campaign, called for a constitutional amendment limiting the governor's commutation powers.
Fisher has blamed job losses and economic hardships on the Bush administration's "disastrous trade policies and economic policies." In particular, he argues President Bush's 2001 and 2003 tax cuts for higher-income households contributed to the economic crisis and he believes Congress should not extend them.
Fisher's friendship with then-Rep. Ted Strickland (D-Ohio) helped him return to politics in 2006, when Strickland tapped him as his running-mate in the governor's race. When he was running for governor himself in 1998, Fisher tapped Columbus City Council President Michael Coleman (D); Coleman later became Columbus mayor.