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PETRASH, LOUIS

PETRASH, LOUIS (1 Jan. 1891-13 Oct. 1967), lawyer and municipal judge, was a member of CLEVELAND CITY COUNCIL from 1921-31, the first native-born Clevelander of Hungarian descent to be elected to public office. Petrash was born in Cleveland to Michael and Mary (Fesco) Petrash and attended St. Ignatius High School. He graduated with an A.B. and an A.M. from JOHN CARROLL UNIVERSITY and received his law degree in 1914 from the law school of Western Reserve University (see CASE WESTERN RESERVE UNIVERSITY). Petrash was admitted to the bar in 1915 and became associated with the firm of Locher, Green & Woods. He served as deputy clerk for the board of elections (1917), as license commissioner for the city (1932-33), and was a member of the Cuyahoga County Charter Commission. He was a representative to the International Bar Convention in London in 1924. Appointed to the municipal bench in 1934, Petrash was re-elected in 1935 and served until his death.

Petrash chaired and served on various war relief committees after WORLD WAR I and was active in the Hungarian community, as the first president of the Magyar Club (1920s) for example. He also served the EAST END NEIGHBORHOOD HOUSE (campaign director), the CITIZENS BUREAU (trustee), the Community Fund (vice-president), the CLEVELAND CULTURAL GARDEN FEDERATION, and was a director of Third Federal Savings and Loan Association.

Petrash married Zelder Weizer in 1928 (d. 1966); they had a daughter, Jean M. (Mrs. Robert) Henley. Petrash died at ST. LUKE'S HOSPITAL.