Municipal Court Judge Megan E. Shanahan represents Hamilton County’s Fourth Judicial District.
Judge Shanahan was elected in November 2011 in a landslide victory in which she carried 77 of 86 precincts and took over 60 percent of the vote.
The Cincinnati Enquirer named Judge Shanahan as one of the “Women to Watch in 2012,” and noted that with her election she became the” youngest of the 14 Hamilton County Municipal Court judges, achieving a growing respect as a courthouse leader and political force.”
Throughout her career, Judge Shanahan has shown a commitment to public safety. Prior to joining the bench, Judge Shanahan was a senior member of the Hamilton County Prosecutor’s Office, and made her mark as one of its top litigators. She was entrusted with the most serious cases that the office handled. She successfully tried over 50 jury trials
As an assistant prosecutor, she was a courtroom pioneer in prosecuting child predators. In a past case, she persuaded the court to allow closed circuit television for the live testimony of a child victim. This allowed the child to testify in a separate room so as not to be intimidated by his offender, while at the same time protecting the defendant’s constitutional rights. The jury voted to convict due to the child’s testimony.
It is this type of innovative thinking that was rewarded by the Hope in Heels Organization, a group that recognizes those who advocate for victims of crime. She was the recipient of the Peggy Caldwell Award for her professionalism, creativity, and determination in working with victims of violent crime in 2009.
Judge Shanahan’s career in public service began in the Butler County Prosecutor’s Office. She diligently prosecuted those who violated the obscenity laws, while also protecting free speech. She successfully negotiated the closure of a business that sold pornography and obscene materials. She also prosecuted the largest child pornography case in Butler County history, as of 2003.
Born and raised in the coal country of western Pennsylvania Judge Shanahan, the youngest of eight children, earned her bachelor of arts degree from Kent State University in 1995 before going on to earn her law degree from the University of Cincinnati’s College of Law in 2000.
Judge Shanahan frequently lectures at schools and civic groups. She has supported the Cincinnati Living Hope organization that helps provide transitional housing for homeless women and their children. Judge Shanahan is a member of St. Mary Church in Hyde Park. She is married and resides in Cincinnati, Ohio.