Past Ohio Attorneys General 1951–1983
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Past Ohio Attorneys General 1951–1983

Profile headshot of C. William O'Neill
C. William O'Neill
Attorney General of Ohio


One of C. William O'Neill's greatest accomplishments as attorney general was his investigation of the narcotics traffic in Ohio. He drafted a narcotics control bill, which was passed in 1955. O'Neill also served as governor of Ohio. During his administration, he promoted the construction of freeways and divided highways in order to connect distant towns and cities. He also proposed a "right to work act," which would have made union shops illegal, had it not been eliminated.

Profile headshot of William B. Saxbe
William B. Saxbe
Attorney General of Ohio

1957–1959, 1963–1969

During his term as Ohio Attorney General, William Saxbe supported capital punishment and argued for longer prison sentences when a gun was used to commit a crime. He described his philosophy as "conservative on money and crime" and "liberal on the rights of people." Saxbe was appointed U.S. Attorney General in late 1973 by President Richard Nixon and served during the Watergate scandal where he was involved in the legal issues surrounding the Watergate tapes.

Profile headshot of Mark McElroy
Mark McElroy
Attorney General of Ohio


Mark McElroy served Ohio as a state representative and state senator before defeating William Saxbe for the post of attorney general in 1958. He was the Democratic candidate for governor in 1962 and 1970, but was defeated in both the primaries. McElroy also served Cuyahoga County for many years as county recorder. He was elected to that position five times.

Profile headshot of Paul W. Brown
Paul W. Brown
Attorney General of Ohio


Paul Brown served as attorney general during a very difficult time in our nation's history. As a political figure during the Vietnam War, he was required to issue political opinions, create programs for aid and deal with many other issues. Brown's service to his country began when he served in the U.S. Army during World War II. He also served as a judge for the Ohio Court of Appeals and Justice of the Supreme Court of Ohio.

Profile headshot of William J. Brown
William J. Brown
Attorney General of Ohio


As attorney general William Brown created the first Consumer Protection Section. Before becoming attorney general he earned acclaim as a lawyer for the Office of Equal Opportunity in Youngstown, Ohio. He became involved in politics when serving as chairman for the Humphrey for President campaign in Columbiana County. In addition to serving as attorney general, Brown served in the United States Army from 1963 to 1969.