Judge Fregiato announces candidacy

ST. CLAIRSVILLE – Judge Frank Fregiato has announced his candidacy for Judge of the Belmont County Court of Common Pleas, where he has served since his appointment to that bench in August. Prior to moving to the common pleas bench, he had been the Northern Division County Court Judge since 1997 and in the private practice of law since 1977.

Judge Fregiato is a lifetime resident of Belmont County, Ohio, growing up in Bridgeport and Martins Ferry and graduating from Martins Ferry High School and serving as class officer. He received his B.A. degree from Ohio State University with political science honors and Phi Betta Kappa honors. He received his law degree also from Ohio State University, graduating in the top 5 percent of his class with Order of the Coif honors, where he served and published on Law Journal.

He was Special Counsel to the Attorney General, and is admitted before all Ohio courts, including the Ohio Supreme Court, the Federal District Court, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals and the U.S. Supreme Court. He is a member of American, Ohio, and Belmont County Bar Associations, a former member of the Ohio State Bar Banking Committee and the Ohio State Bar Ethics Committee, past president of Belmont County Bar Association, former law director of the City of Bellaire, former solicitor of the Village of Belmont, and former solicitor of the Village of Brookside. He is also a member of the National Italian American Bar Association.

Judge Fregiato is a member of St. Mary’s Church of St. Clairsville, and Ohio State University Belmont County Alumni Club as director and past president. He is a former member of the Bridgeport Chamber of Commerce and St. Clairsville Chamber of Commerce. He is a member of the Bellaire Sons of Italy, serving as the former Orator-Consigliere and serving on its cultural committee. He was the Sons of Italy winner of the 2003 Outstanding Achievement Award and served as a Sons of Italy State and National delegate.

In 2005, he received the Purple Aster Award on the state level from the Sons of Italy. He is also a member of the St. Clairsville Rotary Club where he was president and instituted the countywide project providing dictionaries to all third graders. He previously served as Bridgeport Rotary Club president. He is a member of St. Clairsville Knights of Columbus, American Council on Exercise Certified Personal Trainers, Kirkwood Hendrysburg Masons receiving the 2000 Ohio Grand Lodge Community Service Award, Ohio Valley Christian Soldiers, Ohio Cancer Research Associates and its 2006 honoree, Ohio Valley Athletic Conference past advisory staff, past Easter Seals Telethon participant, Blaine Bridge Preservation Project, Ohio River Front Development Co. past director, Miracle of Life Support Group and former Ohio Representative of the Washington, D. C.-based Italian Commission on Social Justice.

He was the Upper Ohio Valley Italian Festival Italian-American of the Year for 2002, was appointed by the Bishop to the Child Protection Review Board of the Diocese of Steubenville and has since been elected as chairperson thereof, and served on the East Ohio Regional Hospital Development Fund Campaign Board. He received the Sons of American Revolution Law Enforcement Medal and Women’s Tri-County Help Center Peace Keepers Award. He is also a member of the GTO Association of America, and Historic Vehicle Association. Quite recently, he received the Rotary International District Community Service Award, the OVAC Hall of Fame Distinguished Service Award, and the GTO Foster Dedication Memorial Award.

In addition to previously publishing on Ohio State’s Law Journal, he also authored “A Brief History of Italy” which is a comprehensive essay from pre-Roman times to the modern era and authored a lead article in the international GTO magazine, “The Legend.” In 2010, “The Legend” named Fregiato a regular columnist and his column has been named “Quarter Mile with the Judge.”

Judge Fregiato established the “Live Court to Our High Schools” program in the county court, which is believed to be the first program of its kind in the country, to demonstrate to the youth there are consequences for one’s actions.

He resides in St. Clairsville with his wife, Cynthia. Frank and Cynthia have a daughter Tessa, a son Dustin, and grandsons Dominic, Vincent and Jackson. He enjoys history, personal training, Italian language and culture, and his classic collector cars.

Judge Fregiato explained, “I will continue to serve with passion and enthusiasm maintaining my philosophical foundation that there must indeed be consequences for one’s actions. I am very appreciative of the support and trust my fellow Belmont County citizens and the law enforcement officers have shown me over the years.”

He continued, “A judge must be tough and very strong, while also, depending upon the situation, quite compassionate, while above everything protecting victims and the public, all at the same time.”