Judge Marilyn Zayas

judge zayas

Judge Marilyn Zayas was elected to the First Appellate District in 2016 and re-elected in 2018.  She was honored to be selected to sit on an Ohio Supreme Court case in June 2018. 

After her election, Judge Zayas created the “Educating Tomorrow’s Leaders” program, an educational program for high school students.  The program invites students to the Court of Appeals to interact with judges and attorneys, learn about the law, and inspire them to dream big.  Judge Zayas is committed to promoting accessibility and accountability through student outreach and community forums. 

Prior to joining the First Appellate District of Ohio, Judge Zayas served the community as an attorney for nearly 20 years.  In 2001, she founded a private practice and built a strong reputation by successfully handling complex casesShe has an extensive legal background including: investor, business and family immigration law; intellectual property; labor and employment; criminal; and juvenile law.  Judge Zayas has practiced in numerous courts, including state and federal trial and appellate courts. 

As an attorney, she partnered with several law enforcement agencies on victims’ advocacy issues to develop best practices so that foreign-born victims would overcome their fears, report crimes, cooperate with the investigation of crimes, and appear for court proceedings.  She has also served as an adjunct professor at her alma mater, the University of Cincinnati College Of Law and provided legal training to judges, magistrates, attorneys, and the Cincinnati FBI.

She is one of the 2019 YWCA Career Women of Achievement award recipients.  In 2017, she received the prestigious University of Cincinnati College of Law Nicholas Longworth, III Alumni Achievement Award, and was awarded the LULAC Women's National Convention Service and Commitment Award in 2014. 

She currently serves on the board of Beech Acres Parenting Center and Ohio Supreme Court's Board of Character and Fitness.

Judge Marilyn Zayas grew up in a tough New York City neighborhood.  Her dad worked in a printing shop and her mom worked as a seamstress in a garment factory.  Judge Zayas overcame numerous obstacles to earn a college degree in computer science.  She made Cincinnati her home in 1988 when she came to work for Procter & Gamble.  She left P & G in 1994 to pursue her dream to become a lawyer. 
Judge Marilyn Zayas's family includes her three adult children and two adopted rescue dogs, Thor and Sparkle Lou.