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2012 Commencement Speaker

Ms. Mary Taylor, Lt. Govenor for the State of Ohio

Mary Taylor’s goal is to help make Ohio jobs-friendly once again.

Taylor was sworn in as Ohio’s 65th Lieutenant Governor on January 10, 2011, the same day Governor John R. Kasich named her to lead CSI Ohio – the “Common Sense Initiative” to reform Ohio’s regulatory policies, as well as to serve as the director of the Ohio Department of Insurance. These two assignments dovetail together and provide the perfect launching pad for working to make Ohio a jobs – and business – friendly state. CSI Ohio will review Ohio’s regulatory system to eliminate excessive and duplicative rules that stand in the way of job creation and the regulatory mission of the Department of Insurance is a good place to start.

Both CSI and the Department of Insurance present unique challenges, but Taylor is no stranger to taking on tough assignments. As the first certified public accountant to serve as Auditor of State, she transformed the office into a nationally-recognized, 21st-century government auditing office. The National White Collar Crime Center praised Taylor for her excellence in fighting and preventing fraud and for recovering millions in misspent tax dollars. The Ohio Society of CPA’s called Taylor one of their “most influential” members.

As a state legislator, Mary Taylor was instrumental in passing Ohio’s 2005 tax reform package that reduced personal income taxes by 21 percent. The measure also eliminated the tangible personal property tax, the corporate franchise tax and the inventory tax imposed on businesses. She was a member of the House Finance, Ways and Means, and Education committees and was recognized by the United Conservatives of Ohio as a “Watchdog of the Treasury.” The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), the nation’s largest small-business group, also named Taylor a “Guardian of Small Business” for her outstanding voting record on behalf of Ohio’s small-business owners.

Lt. Governor Taylor earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting and a master’s degree in taxation from the University of Akron. She began her career in 1990 with Deloitte and Touche, one of the “big four” national accounting firms. She joined the Akron firm of Bober, Markey, Fedorovich & Company in 1994, where she served as director of the firm’s tax department and senior manager of the employee benefits practice.

She’s been called an “expert” on state budget issues by the Columbus Dispatch and her hometown newspaper – the Suburbanite – called her one of Summit County’s “most influential women.”

Mary Taylor is a life-long resident of northeast Ohio where she lives with her husband, Don, and their sons, Michael and Joe.

Rhodes State College

  • 2011 Jim Petro, Chancellor, Ohio Board of Regents
  • 2010 Dr. Martha Kanter, Under Secretary for the Department of Education
  • 2009 Dr. Barbara Gellman-Danley, Vice Chancellor, Academic Affairs & System Integrations
  • 2008 Donna Alvarado, Chair, Ohio Board of Regents
  • 2007 Eric Fingerhut, Chancellor, Ohio Board of Regents
  • 2006 Steve Johnson, Editor, The Lima News
  • 2005 Roger P. Jones, Ohio Ready Mixed Concrete Association
  • 2004 Walter L. Kinsey, Manager, Lazarus/Macy’s, Lima
  • 2003 Christine Nathe, RDH, MS, Assoc. Professor/Clinical Manager, University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center (2003 Outstanding Alumna)
  • 2002 Mr. Terry M. Thomas, Executive Director, OACC, Columbus

Lima Technical College

  • 2001 Dr. Paul J. Otte, President of Franklin University, Columbus
  • 2000 Dr. William Hussey, formerly Assistant to the President at LTC
  • 1999 Robert Cupp, Ohio Senate
  • 1998 Dr. David Ponitz, President Emeritus, Sinclair Community College
  • 1997 Kathleen Vuchetich, former LTC Trustee, formerly head of West Ohio Gas, Lima
  • 1996 Bob Taft, Ohio Secretary of State
  • 1995 Sam Bassitt, Recipient of Honorary Degree, VP for Instruction, LTC
  • 1994 Paul Edwards, Plant Manager, Ford Lima Engine Plant
  • 1993 Wilfred Ellis, M.D.
  • 1992 Cathleen Oxner, Plant Manager, Proctor & Gamble
  • 1991 Lou Nobile, President, Bank One
  • 1990 David Berger, Mayor of Lima
  • 1989 Carol Klosterman, Supervisor of hourly personnel & labor relations, Ford Motor
  • 1988 Furl Williams, President, Lima City Council
  • 1987 Michael G. Oxley, U.S. Congressman
  • 1986 Robert Cupp, State Senator
  • 1985 William W. Grimes, Plant Manager, Lima Refinery, Standard Oil
  • 1984 Gregory W. Turner, President, Lima Memorial Hospital
  • 1983 John T. Mount, Vice President, Regional Campuses, OSU Columbus
  • 12/1982 None
  • 1982 Richard H. Riggs, WCIT/WLSR Radio, former LTC Trustee
  • 1981 Msgr. E.C. Herr, Lima Central Catholic High School
  • 1980 None
  • 1979 James Heins, Westinghouse, Lima
  • 1978 John P. Timmerman, President, John P. Timmerman Co.
  • 1977 Kenneth M. Clemens, D.D.S., LTC Trustee
  • 1976 J. McLean Reed, former director, OSU Lima
  • 1975 W. Ben Rose, State Representative
  • 1974 James S. Biddle
  • 1973 James S. Biddle
  • 1972 James S. Biddle