EAST LIVERPOOL -Retiring Columbiana County Common Pleas Judge David Tobin loves Jimmy Buffett and peanut M&M's. Those were just some of the aspects of Judge Tobin's life away from the bench used Saturday during a roast of His Honor at the East Liverpool Country Club.
The good-natured ribbing started even before the official roast, with Jane Telzrow, Calcutta Rotary president, hitting the highlights of Judge Tobin's resume.
Judge Tobin has been a judge for 35 years, 25 with the Columbiana County Common Pleas Court. Elected in 1986, he has served six consecutive terms since then. Prior to his judgeship, he was the county prosecutor.
Columbiana County Common Pleas Judge David Tobin (seated) endures some ribbing from fellow Common Pleas Judge C. Ashley Pike during a retirement roast Saturday at the East Liverpool Country Club. The roast was sponsored by Calcutta Rotary. (Photo by Nancy Tullis)
A look at his resume reveals he has spent a majority of his time serving others through law and volunteerism.
Among his many accomplishments, Judge Tobin has served on five professional organizations and eight associations.
He was also an original member and current supporter of the Rotary Club of Calcutta. Telzrow noted Judge Tobin has agreed join the Calcutta Rotary board, and serve as president.
Concluding her remarks about Judge Tobin's accomplishments, Telzrow quipped, "That's a pretty impressive resume for a Parrot Head, don't you think?"
Judge Thomas Baronzzi of the Juvenile Court came to the podium briefcase in hand.
"We all owe (Judge Tobin) a debt of gratitude," Judge Baronzzi said in a serious tone. "But this is a roast, so we're not going to do that."
He noted he learned a lot from Judge Tobin, both as an attorney, and as a fellow judge. As an attorney, Judge Baronzzi said he always knew where he stood when presenting a case before Judge Tobin's bench.
"You could tell what he thought of your line of questioning, because he would tell you," Judge Baronzzi said. He also revealed that Judge Tobin has an addiction, and pulled a large bag of peanut M&Ms from his briefcase.
Judge Baronzzi also claimed to have rummaged through Judge Tobin's office to learn more about him in preparation for the roast. He pulled a large cluster of Mardi Gras beads from the briefcase and held them high for everyone in the packed room and an overflow room to see. He held them up in front of the judge, noting, "You're supposed to give these away!"
He said Judge Tobin's sage advice on his making the transition from attorney to judge. "He told me, 'It's different being a judge. When you're a judge and you're talking to an attorney on the phone, they wait to yell 'S--w you!'after they hang up the phone!'"
Other roasters on the program were Judge Melissa Byers-Emmerling, and Attorneys David Buzzard, Timothy Brookes, James Hartford, Frederic Naragon and Joseph King.
Starting off the roast of Judge Tobin was his fellow Common Pleas Judge C. Ashley Pike.
Judge Pike ribbed Judge Tobin about the difference in their political views. Judge Pike is a Republican, Judge Tobin a Democrat. Judge Pike referred to Judge Tobin as "a flaming liberal left over from Woodstock."
He joked that he signs his orders in red ink, and Judge Tobin signs his with blue ink.
"When I said 'I thought Democrats like to spend money,' he said, 'They do. Other people's money!"
Judge Pike spoke of their shared heritage and their connection with both their father's serving as juvenile judges. Louis Tobin was a juvenile and probate judge and namesake for the county juvenile detention center. Judge Pike's father Charles A. Pike was a juvenile judge and namesake of the juvenile court center.
Judge Pike said at one point, the connection almost became much closer.
"There was a time when we thought it a good idea to get our widowed parents together," Judge Pike said. "We would have been stepbrothers! Referring to their polar-opposite political views, Judge Pike added, "Can you imagine Christmases in that house?"
"They'd be just like mine!" someone shouted from the crowd.
Judge Pike closed on a serious note, however, in tribute to his friend and colleague on the bench.
Referring to their late fathers, Judge Pike said, "I think Louis Tobin and Charlie Pike are together and looking down on us, and they're saying, 'Boys, job well done."