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Cleveland: 216-696-4441

Columbus: 614-224-4411

Jonathan J. Downes

AttorneysJonathan J. Downes
AttorneysJonathan J. Downes
Jonathan J. Downes


AV Preeminent Rated
through Martindale-Hubbel

AV Preeminent

College of Labor and Employment Lawyers
Fellow (Elected 2015)

College of Labor and Employment Lawyers

OSBA Certified Specialist
in Labor and Employment Law

OSBA Certified Specialist

Best Lawyers (2010 – 2023)

Best Lawyers in America

Super Lawyers (2004 – 2022)

Top 50 Super Lawyers in Columbus (2015, 2019)

Super Lawyers

Central Ohio Top Lawyers (2009 – 2014)

OHPELRA Award of Excellence (2016)


  • Ohio State Bar Association
    Labor & Employment Law Section
  • Columbus Bar Association
  • Licking County Bar Association

Jonathan J. Downes

About Jonathan

Jonathan Downes has over 30 years of experience in practicing labor and employment law in Ohio and has successfully negotiated over 500 labor agreements and has presented over 100 impasse proceedings and 100 arbitrations. He represents cities, townships, counties, school districts, and public officials throughout the State of Ohio. Jonathan also represents private employers in employment matters. He has argued cases before the Ohio Supreme Court and the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.

Jonathan is rated AV Preeminent by Martindale-Hubbell. Jonathan is a Fellow of the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers. Jonathan has been selected as one of the “Best Lawyers in America – Employment and Labor Law” every year since 2010, as an “Ohio Super Lawyer” every year since 2004, one of “Central Ohio Top Lawyers” since 2009, and received the OHPELRA “Award of Excellence” in 2016. He is also certified by the Ohio State Bar Association (“OSBA”) as a Specialist in Labor and Employment law.

He lectures frequently on many topics including state and federal employment and labor law developments, civil rights, civil service, arbitration, and collective bargaining. Jonathan served on the Civil Service Review Commission for the State of Ohio, authored “Civil Service Law in Ohio,” and edits the Westlaw annual publication of the “Ohio Civil Service and Collective Bargaining Laws and Rules Annotated.” Jonathan was a member of the OSBA’s Board of Governors for the Labor and Employment Law Section, is a member of the Ohio Management Lawyers Association, and a charter member and past president of the Ohio Public Employers Labor Relations Association. Jonathan volunteers in his community in various capacities including serving on boards of a public library and two charter schools and advises a high school mock trial team.

Contact Jonathan ( at 614.224.4411 | Print Profile

“Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.”

– Theodore Roosevelt


  • Case Western Reserve University School of Law
    – J.D.
  • Virginia Tech – B.S., Public Administration


  • State: Ohio
  • Federal: U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
  • Federal: U.S. District Court, Northern District of Ohio
  • Federal: U.S. District Court, Southern District of Ohio

Reported Cases

  • Dendinger v. Ohio, 207 Fed. Appx. 521 (6th Cir., 2006)
  • McDermott v. Blackwell, No. C2-CV-04-721, 2006 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 10705 (S.D. Ohio Mar. 10, 2006)
  • Hillsboro v. Fraternal Order of Police, 52 Ohio St. 3d 174 (Ohio Supreme Court, 1990)


  • Ohio Civil Service & Collective Bargaining Laws & Rules Annotated (Jonathan J. Downes, ed., Westlaw 2014)
  • Author, Civil Service Law In Ohio (Banks-Baldwin 1993)