Indian-American attorney replaces Indian-Tibetan Cincinnati city mayor at Hamilton County


An Indian-American attorney will be replacing the Indian-Tibetan Cincinnati city mayor-elect Aftab Pureval is the Hamilton County clerk of courts.

Last Wednesday, on December 29, the 200-plus Democrats who assembled in a union hall in Evanston, unanimously chose attorney and former judicial candidate Pavan Parikh to succeed Pureval.

Parikh is well known in the courthouse, knows the legal system, and can win re-election and keep the seat Democratic, Hamilton County Chairwoman Gwen McFarlin told the Democratic Central Committee. That’s why a nominating committee recommended him.

Parikh is also a judge advocate in the Army Reserve.

“He is serious about this position,” McFarlin said. “He is not using this position as a stepping stone for higher ground.”

Pureval resigned as clerk of courts earlier this month. Under state law, local Democrats have the right to replace him until the next election in November 2022.

Parikh, a resident of Anderson Township, was a 2016 Business Courier 40 Under 40 winner. He currently is legislative counsel and assistant vice president for government relations at Federal Home Loan Bank of Cincinnati and a judge advocate in the U.S. Army Reserve. He previously was minority counsel for the Ohio Senate Democrats. He received his law degree from St. Louis University and a bachelor’s in philosophy from Xavier University.

“In the last few election cycles, the voters have spoken that they wanted to change at the courthouse,” Parikh said.

“Under Aftab’s leadership, we have seen how critical the clerk is to achieving meaningful reform. I believe that I can be of strong service to Hamilton County in this role, having worked at the courthouse and leaning on my years of experience as an attorney, Army officer, business executive, educator, and civic leader. I look forward to helping make our justice system work better for all of the people of Hamilton County.”

Parikh has run unsuccessfully twice for Hamilton County judgeships — the probate court in 2020 and common pleas court in 2018.

Parikh’s appointment was unanimous after state Rep. Jessica Miranda, D-Forest Park, told the party in a letter that she would not contest the appointment at the meeting. Miranda was a leading candidate seeking the clerk of courts appointment.

Former Wyoming Mayor Thaddeus Hoffmeister was another candidate. A nominating committee recommended Parikh. Statehouse Republicans gerrymandered Ohio House districts so that Miranda was drawn out of the district she had represented and put in a conservative, GOP-leaning district. Miranda had beaten an incumbent Republican in 2018 and held the seat against former Hamilton County Commissioner Chris Monzel in 2020.

“We as a party need to appoint someone who can both do the job well and win the election to hold onto the seat. My friend Pavan Parikh can do both. I will not ask you to vote for me instead of him,” Miranda wrote.

Pureval, who is the first Democrat elected to the mayor’s office in more than 100 years, has pledged to rebuild the city’s economy to make sure prosperity is shared in every corner of Cincinnati.

He will also work towards reforming the police department and investing in public safety so every neighborhood is safe and create more affordable housing and improve public transportation, according to a statement on his website.

As clerk, he had made access to justice a priority by launching a help center to assist people who are representing themselves with legal resources so more people can utilize the courts.

During his tenure, he had brought modern and professional reforms to the clerk’s office.

Born and raised in Southwest Ohio, Pureval went to the Ohio State University. His wife Whitney is a doctor who has also been involved with the treatment of Covid patients.