Richard Bernat

Class of 1964

Richard graduated with a B.A. from the University of Texas (Austin) in 1968, then received his J.D. at Northern Kentucky University Chase College of Law in 1975. While at NKU he was class president and was the winner of two book awards for highest grades.


He was admitted to the practice of law State of Ohio in 1975, United State District Court for the Southern District of Ohio (1975), United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit (1976), United States Supreme Court (1981), United States District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky (1984) and United States Texas Court (1976). He practiced law for almost 21 years as a trial lawyer. He was appointed as the first full-time magistrate in the Court of Common Pleas (General Division) of Hamilton County, Ohio on January 1, 1996. From that time, until he was appointed to the Hamilton County Municipal court, he presided over a large number of non jury trials. He resigned as Magistrate on December 21, 2006 after being appointed Judge of the Hamilton County Municipal Court.


Richard was seminar chairman and moderator of a 1992 Seminar on Search and Seizure “The Fourth Amendment, Still a Potent Weapon for the Defense.” In addition to presenting seminars, he has been a moderator and panelist.


His Honor is a member of the Cincinnati Bar Association and Ohio State Bar Association, was a member of the Ohio Association of Magistrates from 1996-2006, and a member of the Board of Directors of the Ohio Association of Magistrates from 2003-2006. He was practice chair for the Common Pleas/ Appellate section of the Ohio Association of Magistrates from 2003-2006.


In 1985, Richard was elected to the Northwest Board of Education for a four year term, serving as its president in 1989. He was appointed to the Hamilton County Board of Zoning Appeals beginning January 1, 1990, serving until November, 1994 when Colerain Township passed local zoning. He has been a member of the Forest Park Kiwanis Club. In 1999, his peers of the Chase Law School Alumni Association elected him president. He has been very involved in the Finneytown High School reunions for the Class of 1964, helping to organize successful class reunions.