Yvette McGee Brown

A series of firsts defines the judicial and professional career of Yvette McGee Brown. She was the first African-American woman elected to the Franklin County Common Pleas Court. She was the founding president of the Center for Child and Family Advocacy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. And, in January 2011, she became the first AfricanAmerican woman to serve as a Justice on the Supreme Court of Ohio. She is presently a partner at the global law firm of Jones Day specializing in litigation and appellate practice.

McGee Brown was first elected to the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas, Domestic Relations and Juvenile division in 1992. As lead Juvenile Court Judge, she led the creation of the Family Drug Court and the SMART Program, a truancy and educational neglect intervention program. She served on the Common Pleas Court until 2002, when she retired from the bench to create the Center for Child and Family Advocacy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. The Center is a multi-disciplinary child abuse and family violence organization that services children and families experiencing abuse.

While a common theme in McGee Brown’s professional and community work is her advocacy for children and families, she is also an active community and corporate leader. She serves on the board of directors of Motorists Insurance Company and has previously served on the board of directors of Glimcher Realty Trust, M/I Homes, Inc., Fifth Third Bank of Central Ohio, Ohio University, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center and the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption. She is the former chair of the United Way of Central Ohio, The Ohio State University Alumni Association and the YWCA Columbus Board of Directors. In 2008, McGee Brown was inducted into the Ohio Women’s Hall of Fame and in 2014 she was inducted into the Central Ohio Business Hall of Fame.

Among her many honors are The Ohio University Medal of Merit, The Ohio State University Distinguished Service Award, Women of Color Woman of the Year, the Girl Scout Great Award and the Columbus Bar Association Nettie Cronise Lutes Award.

McGee Brown graduated from Ohio University in 1982 with a degree in journalism/public relations and The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law in 1985. She has honorary doctorate degrees from Urbana University, Ohio Dominican University, Wilberforce University and Central State University.

McGee Brown is married to Tony Brown and they have three children and two grandchildren.

McGee Brown has been a member of Marburn Academy’s Board since 2016.