General Counsel

Larry H. James


General Counsel, National Fraternal Order of Police
Managing Partner, Crabbe, Brown & James, LLP
(614) 229-4567

Larry James has been at the heart of the Columbus business, legal, civic, and political scene for the last thirty years. He is a respected litigator, as well as an advisor to local and national leaders. In recognition of his many achievements, the law firm changed its name from Crabbe, Brown, Jones, Potts & Schmidt to Crabbe, Brown & James in January 2001.

In 2011, The Ohio State University selected Mr. James as lead counsel to represent its student athletes in NCAA investigations. In 2013, Armen Keteyian published his book The System: The Glory and Scandal of Big-Time College Football, a chapter of which is dedicated to Larry's work in representing the OSU football players.

In 2012, Mr. James and his wife, Donna, were awarded the American Red Cross of Greater Columbus' Humanitarians of the Year Award. In 2015, noted journalist Wil Haygood published his award-winning book Showdown: Thurgood Marshall and the Supreme Court Nomination That Changed America, which he dedicated to Mr. James.

Mr. James is a life member of the Sixth Circuit Judicial Conference, and he has served as General Counsel of the National Fraternal Order of Police since 2001. He is also co-founder of the African-American Leadership Academy, a member of the Board of Trustees of Kenyon College, the founding and current president of the Lincoln Theatre, and has served sixteen years as the president of the King Arts Complex.


1981–present – Crabbe, Brown & James, LLP – Managing Partner
Practice Areas: Administrative Appeals, Civil Rights, Labor/Employment, Public Contracts, Business & Professional Ethics Practice and consultation and Corporate and Business Litigation

1992–2000 – State of Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles – Hearing Examiner

1993–1998 – The Columbus Post – Columnist

1990–1992 – City of Columbus, Ohio Dept. of Public Safety – Safety Director

1989–1992 – City of Columbus, Ohio – Assistant City Attorney

1977–1978 – City of Cleveland, Ohio – Assistant Law Director & Commissioner of Air Pollution Control


2001–present – General Counsel to the National Fraternal Order of Police
1992–present – General Counsel to the Ohio FAIR Plan
2010–2015 – General Counsel to USA Track & Field Board of Directors
Co-Chair of Columbus Public Schools Oversight/Accountability Board
   — Headed two successful Columbus Public Schools levies (operational and bond initiatives)
Martindale-Hubbell "AV" Rating


2012 – American Red Cross Columbus Humanitarian of the Year
2005 – Elyria High School Hall of Fame
2005 – United Way Leadership Award
2001 – Columbus Housing Partnership Bringing People Home Award
2001 – Defense Federal Community The Carter G. Woodson Award
2000 – Ohio Lawyers Weekly Lawyer of the Year
1996 – Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Performing and Cultural Arts Builder of the Dream Award
1996 – National Urban Bankers Circle of Excellence
1994 – Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Performing and Cultural Arts Distinguished Service Award
1991 – The Ohio State University President's Citation for Leadership


United States Court of Appeals 1st, 4th, 6th, 7th, 9th Circuits
United States Supreme Court
United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio
United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio
United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan


2014–Present – Board Franklin County Guardianship Services
   Trustee of the Kenyon College Board
   Executive Board Member – 2015–Present
   Chair of Admissions Committee – 2015–2016
   Member of Trustees Affairs Committee 2016–present
2009–Present – President of the Lincoln Theatre Association Board
2012–2015 – Board Member Cleveland Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
2010 – Columbus City Council Charter Review Committee – Chair
2009 – Ohio State Highway Patrol Superintendent Advisory Panel – Chair
2002–2005 – Board of Trustees Greater Columbus Arts Council
1987–2005 – President Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Performing & Cultural Arts
2002–2004 – Co-Chair Neighborhood School Development Partnership Columbus Public Schools
2003 – Cofounder of the African American Leadership Academy
1992–2002 – Board of Trustees Columbus Museum of Art
1992–1997 – Board Member Rickenbacker Port Authority
1992–1996 – Board of Trustees Greater Columbus Convention & Visitors Bureau
1994–1996 – Ohio Public Defenders Commission Appointed by the Ohio Supreme Court
1992–1995 – Board of Trustees Columbus Zoo
1990–1992 – Board of Directors Contemporary American Theater Company (CATCO)
1989–1992 – Member Ohio Supreme Court's Board of Bar Examiners
1987–1989 – Board of Trustees Columbus Urban League
1987–1989 – Board of Directors Mount Carmel Hospital Health Foundation
1985–1989 – Board of Trustees Veteran's Memorial
1984–1989 – Chairman Ohio Elections Commission


1977 Cleveland-Marshall College of Law, Juris Doctor
1974 Wittenberg University B.A. Political Science