President's Page


Marlon A. Primes was born and raised in Akron, Ohio, and graduated from Akron’s Archbishop Hoban High School.  Mr. Primes subsequently attended Ohio University, where he obtained his Bachelor of Science degree from the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism, with honors, in 1986, and was named one of five Outstanding Senior Leaders, the Outstanding Graduate in Broadcast News Journalism, and the Outstanding Black Graduating Senior. After graduating from Ohio University, Mr. Primes served as a Fellow for the Council of Legal Education Opportunity Program at the University of Wisconsin School of Law. Mr. Primes received his law degree from Georgetown University Law Center in 1989, served as a law clerk for the Honorable Wilford Johansen of the National Labor Relations Board, and has served as an assistant U.S. attorney in Cleveland for the past twenty-three (23) years. 

Mr. Primes was the first African-American president of the William K. Thomas Chapter of the American Inns of Court in Cleveland, where he is a Master of the Bench. Mr. Primes is a 2015 Fellow at the Ohio State Bar Association Foundation, and he recently served as Chairman of the Litigation Section of the Ohio State Bar Association (“OSBA”) from 2013-2015, and has served as a member of the OSBA Council of Delegates. Mr. Primes was a member of the Board of Trustees of the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association (“CMBA”) from 2012-2015, the Board of Trustees of the CMBA Foundation from 2005-2011, and the Board of Trustees of the Cleveland Bar Association (“CBA”) from 2001-2004, where he chaired the CBA’s Litigation Section and the CBA’s Justice For All Committee, which planned and coordinated the bar association’s volunteer activities.

Mr. Primes has also served from 2002-2008 as the national vice president of the National Bar Association (“NBA”), which is the oldest and largest association of African-American attorneys in the country, and he served as the president of the NBA’s Cleveland affiliate chapter, the Norman S. Minor Bar Association, in 1996-1997.  And, from 1999-2013, Mr. Primes served as an adjunct professor at the University of Akron’s Paralegal Studies Program.       

In 2012, the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association named Mr. Primes the Volunteer of Year.

Some of the many volunteer activities Mr. Primes has participated in over the years include:  (1) organizing a free legal clinic in New Orleans, which was simulcast to various cities around the country to help those impacted by Hurricane Katrina; (2) a volunteer day program at a former, local youth detention facility, where volunteers mentored youth and participated in a cook out,  flag football, and basketball games; and (3) a mock suppression hearing and annual field trip for local high school students to the federal courthouse.

Mr. Primes lives in Cleveland Heights, with his wife (Kathi) of twenty-four (24) years, who he met while they both were volunteering at their alma mater, Ohio University. They are the proud parents of Markus, who is a recent graduate of Purdue University and an analyst in the aviation industry in Washington, D.C., and Kayla, who is a graduate of Howard University.

Click to Watch Marlon's Inaugural Address

Past President Presents:

  •  Jay Milano, 2001-2002 (Cuyahoga County Bar)
  • Steve Kaufman, 2003-2004 (Cleveland Bar)
  • David Kutik, 2004-2005 (Cleveland Bar)
  • Hugh Mckay, 2006-2007 (Cleveland Bar)
  • Carter Strang, 2012-2013 (CMBA)

Legal Legacy:

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