1st female speaker in Ohio sees theater renamed in her honor

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ohio’s first female House speaker is being honored with the renaming of a downtown Columbus theater.

Jo Ann Davidson was speaker of the Ohio House from 1995 to 2000. A bill that cleared the state Legislature this week renames the Capitol Theatre in the Riffe Center across from the Statehouse the Jo Ann Davidson Theatre.

Davidson is national committeewoman for the Ohio Republican Party and a close adviser to Gov. John Kasich (KAY’-sik). She operates the Jo Ann Davidson Ohio Leadership Institute, which recruits and trains Republican women serving in business and civic leadership positions to run for office or to otherwise serve in government.

The 88-year-old Davidson was first elected to the House in 1981.

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