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Judge Nicastro


Judge Nicastro was elected in 1993 and took office as a Garfield Heights Municipal Court Judge on January 2, 1994 and has served the Court for 27 years. Currently she serves as the Presiding and Administrative Judge of the Court.


  • Judge of the Garfield Heights Municipal Court-1994 to present
  • Private Attorney-Law Office of Deborah J. Nicastro, Criminal and Civil Litigation, Real Estate, Public Contracts 1984-1994
  • Law Director and Prosecutor for the Village of Grafton, Lorain County, Ohio
  • Associate Attorney-Wuliger, Fadel & Beyer, Associate Attorney, Criminal & Civil Litigation, Labor Law-Labor Representative, Appellate Practice 1979-1984


  • 1996–1997, Case Western Reserve University, Weatherhead Society of Professional Fellows
  • 1976–1979, Case Western Reserve University, School of Law, Juris Doctor Degree
  • 1972–1976, Cleveland State University, Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science

Current Service to the Ohio Judiciary

  • Member of the Executive Board of the Ohio Judicial Conference
  • Chair of the Publications Committee of the Ohio Judicial Conference
  • Chair of the Ohio Local Budget Collobrative of the Ohio Judicial Conference
  • Member of the Court Administration Committee of the Ohio Judicial Conference
  • Chair of the Judicial Administration Committee of the Association of Municipal and County Judges of Ohio

Past Service to the Ohio Judiciary

  • Ohio Judicial Conference Community Outreach and Public Confidence Committee
  • Ohio Judicial Conference’s Technology Committee
  • National Association of Women Judges-District 7 Director

Service to the Ohio Legal Profession

Beyond the Bench

  • Current Community Service
  • Past Community Service
    • President of the Independence Kiwanis Club
    • President of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Ladies Auxiliary Post 3483
    • President of the Senior Citizens of Independence, Ohio
    • President of the Garfield Heights Chamber of Commerce Charitable and Educational Foundation
    • Trustee for the former St. Michael’s Federal Credit Union 1999-2004
    • Member of Board of Directors of the Weatherhead Society of Professional Fellows
    • Garfield Heights Family Violence Task Force
    • Garfield Heights City Schools’ Substance Abuse and Violence Elimination Task Force 1996-2004
    • Garfield Heights Family Violence Coordinated Community Response Team
    • Guest Lecturer for the United Steel Workers of America AFL-CIO   
    • Judge of the Alternative Juvenile Program of the Garfield Heights City Schools


  • Professional Memberships
    • Ohio Judicial Conference
    • Assoication of Municipal and County Judges of Ohio
    • Ohio State Bar Association
    • Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association
    • Weatherhead Society of Professional Fellows
    • CWRU School of Law’s Silver Barrister Circle
  • Service Organization Memberships
    • Garfield Heights Kiwanis Club
    • Independence Kiwanis Club
    • Silver & Gold, Inc.
    • Veterans of Foreign Wars Auxiliary Post 3483
  • Other Memberships
    • Brecksville-Broadview Hts., Garfield Hts., Independence, Maple Hts. Democratic Clubs
    • Garfield Heights Woman's Club
    • Italian American Women's Network
    • Italian Sons and Daughters of America
    • Senior Citizens of Independence

Bar Admissions

  • Supreme Court of Ohio – Admitted 1979
  • United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth District
  • United States Tax Court


  • Freedom Award from the American Nationalities Movement  2014
  • Association of Municipal and County Judges of Ohio President’s Award for Judicial Excellence 2013
  • Public Service Award from the Cleveland Italian American Heritage Committee 2012
  • Columbian of Year from the Federation of Italian American Societies 1994