Retired Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court Judge Michael Jackson was inducted into the Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame on November 29 for his many accomplishments, including his work to establish the Cuyahoga County Veterans Treatment Court (VTC).
The Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame recognizes veterans who continued to serve their communities after their time in the military. As Judge Jackson describes it, it’s all about “service after service.”
Judge Jackson served as a lieutenant in the U.S. Marine Corps after graduating from college in 1966. He completed law school after his 13-month tour in Vietnam and spent 30 years in private practice. He then became an assistant Cuyahoga County prosecuting attorney and was later elected a trial judge on the Common Pleas Court.
He presided over the first specialized docket for veterans in our Court in 2015. Through this approach, Judge Jackson assisted over 100 people. Today, the court provides treatment and support to veterans while also holding offenders accountable, and is the largest veterans court in the state.
“It was very important to me to reconnect with veterans on a personal basis,” Judge Jackson said. “It helped me as a veteran by participating in the court and I think it really balanced out all of the feelings I have about being a veteran, coming back from combat, and integrating back into the civilian community in a positive way.”
Judge Jackson shared his experiences in a four-part Public Broadcasting Service series “The American Veteran,” which aired in 2021.
He continues to serve as a visiting judge, a member of the Ohio State Bar Association Military and Veterans’ Affairs Committee, and is active in other veteran related events, networks, and committees.
- by Kirsten Thomas, Court News Ohio
You can stream Judge Jackson's 2019 retirement interview below.