Kildow joins Western Division Court race

Todd Kildow will be on the Nov. 6th Belmont County Western?Division Court Judge ballot.

Attorney Kildow is seeking the seat being vacated by Western Division County Court Judge Harry W. White. Kildow separates himself from the other candidates by stating, “I seek this judgeship as a means to help others. Being elected judge will not result in a feather in my cap; though, it will open a door of service that I will use to serve the people of Belmont County for years to come.”

“Although I am honored to have the privilege of serving our Belmont County residents in numerous capacities as an attorney over the past 19 years, I believe I can do more,” stated Kildow. “Every Belmont County resident is equally important to me. To become an attorney I merely took advantage of the opportunities we are all provided through our public education system. Many excellent coaches and teachers played an important role in encouraging me to work hard and take advantage of the education that is provided.” Kildow added, “I take great pride in serving God, Country and Family. I have been blessed with an inspiring family. My father, Robert M. Kildow, who recently received the 50 year award for continuous service in the American Legion after serving in the Korean conflict with his brothers Richard “Dick” Kildow and David Kildow; my brother Chad who has been an inspiration and a model for hard work as a United Mine Worker and Local 549 Ironworker; my brother Shane who has served on Bethesda Village Counsel, worked as a union member at the Noble County Prison, officiated wrestling for the past 23 years and now works to help rehabilitate prisoners at the Belmont County Prison; and of course my mother, Shirley Kildow, who raised us, served five (5) years on Bethesda Village Council, served as a wrestling mom, a football mom, and worked 17 years in the Belmont County treasurer’s office for Joe Gaudio and Joe Pappano.”

Kildow is married to the former Julie Fitzgerald of Flushing, Ohio, daughter of John and Joanne Gibson Fitzgerald. Kildow stated, “I am married to a beautiful and supportive wife of whom I’ve had a crush on since the sixth grade. To top that off God has blessed us with four wonderful, healthy children (Ty, Cal, Casey & Torre) that keep us busy with everything from cheering, to softball, baseball, basketball and football games. There is never a dull moment and we would not have it any other way.” Kildow mused, “although my first 30 years were full of vigor and fun with high school and college athletics followed by 14 years at Lafferty in the Ohio Valley Baseball League; the ‘next thirty years’ are so much greater as the first 17 of them have been filled with family and service to others, of which I plan to continue for years to come.”

After graduating from Ohio Northern University’s College of Law, and being sworn in as an attorney in 1993, Kildow spent five years with the law firm of Hanlon, Duff, Paleudis and Estadt in St. Clairsville. Kildow credits his theme of integrity and service in the legal community to his early years working for Barnesville’s Lodge L. Hanlon, who was not only a very well respected tax and estate planning attorney, but also a Certified Public Accountant prior to becoming a lawyer. “Lodge always stated that the only true belonging we really have is our integrity. Stay true and honest and they can never take that away from you.” Kildow said. With Hanlon’s words in mind and some coaxing from attorney Keith Sommers, Kildow volunteered and has served as counsel to the Belmont County Certified Grievance Committee for the past 7 years. As counsel to the Grievance Committee Kildow is charged with investigating claims of ethics violations by local attorneys and advises the committee. Kildow also attends yearly meetings with the Ohio Disciplinary Counsel which are sponsored by the Ohio Supreme Court each October.

Kildow graduated from Union Local High School in 1983 where he played football for “Jake” Olsavsky, basketball for Rich Saffield and baseball for Steve Laposki and Bill Lee, “each of which left a profound mark on my maturity and ability to deal with life’s obstacles.” Kildow noted. Kildow went on to Mount Union College where he played baseball and earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration in 1987. After graduating, Kildow spent two years with Yellow Freight Systems where he worked with Teamsters and managed an end-of-the-line trucking terminal in Watertown, New York. “All of the candidates have practiced law for six years, which is the requirement to run for county court judge. The difference is that I maintain an active law practice, possess a wide variety of legal experience; and more importantly, have the life experience and integrity to make decisions that affect people’s lives.”

Kildow has been with the firm of Phillips, Gardill, Kaiser & Altmeyer, PLLC since September 1997, and has been a partner/member of the firm since January 2005. Kildow serves as General Counsel to Belmont Savings Bank, which is the number one depository bank in Belmont County in terms of deposits. He also serves the citizens of Belmont County in numerous areas of the law out of his Bethesda office and the firm’s St. Clairsville and Wheeling Offices. When asked why he should be chosen as the next Western Division County Court Judge in Belmont County, Kildow stated, “Integrity. The people will get one of their own on the bench. Our residents will be treated with the utmost respect. I am one of you, thus I intend to be tough on those that deserve it; while understanding in situations in which it appears we can turn someone around. My goal will always be to find the truth.”

Kildow noted that many clients have expressed their concern about having to get another attorney that they can trust. He wants everyone to know that the judgeship is a part-time position. If elected he will maintain his law practice. Finally, Kildow stated, “I want to thank the members of the Carpenters Union, Local 186, and Iron Workers, Local 549 for endorsing my campaign. It is an honor to be so trusted by the hard working residents of the upper Ohio Valley.”