Somerset attorney aims for the circuit court bench

A.C. Donahue

Of the five candidates running for Circuit Court Judge in the 28th Judicial Circuit, Division 1, one stands out in terms of political activism.

Somerset attorney A.C. Donahue said his campaign, and his life's work, has been based on three core values -- Conservative, Christian and Constitutionalist.

"When it comes to the marketplace of ideas, I have not been shy about my faith in Christ," Donahue stated. "My faith guides every aspect of my life and that has included my legal practice and the way I consider the law."

The circuit vacancy was created last November when David Tapp was confirmed to the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. The 28th Judicial Circuit encompasses Pulaski, Lincoln and Rockcastle counties.

"I am the only candidate recommended by the Kentucky Right to Life Association," Donahue said, adding that he has also served as general counsel for Somerset's AIM Pregnancy Center for many years as well as serving on the legal advisory council for the National Institute of Family and Life Advocates. "…In this election, you have a choice between talk or action. I have a life of demonstrated action."

While Donahue's law practice is centered primarily on insurance subrogation, becoming the first person in Kentucky to be warded the insurance industry's Certified Subrogation Recovery Professional (CSRP) designation, his pro bono work focuses on constitutional law with a primary emphasis to protect religious liberties and to advance the rights of homeschool families. He is a member of Alliance Defending Freedom's Honor Corps.

Donahue has a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies from the University of Kentucky ('92), and a Juris Doctorate from Regent University, College of Law ('95). At the time, Regent University's was the only Christian law school in the United States. He is presently pursuing a Master of Divinity from Liberty University, Rawlings School of Divinity (Online). Prior to college, Mr. Donahue honorably served in the U.S. Army from 1980 to 1987. He is admitted to practice law in Kentucky, and all Kentucky federal courts including the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Donahue is a Life Member of the National Rifle Association (NRA), and Member of National Wild Turkey Federation (NWTF) and National Association of Subrogation Professionals (NASP).

In 2016, Donahue was appointed by then-Governor Matt Bevin as a Trustee to the Judicial Form Retirement System (JFRS). JFRS oversees both the judiciary's and legislature's retirement plans. With JFRS, Donahue is a Member of the Legislation Committee, as well as both the Judicial and Legislative Retirement Plain's respective Investment Committees. Earlier this month, Gov. Andy Beshear renewed the appointment for another four-year term.

"I am humbled by this re-appointment allowing me to serve the good people of this Commonwealth and in particular those who rely upon their retirement benefits as administered by the Judicial Form Retirement System," Donahue stated. "I look forward to continuing my work and serving alongside with my fellow Trustees and the staff of the Judicial Form Retirement System."

In 2019, Donahue was recognized as the "Best of the Best Attorney" in the Commonwealth Journal's Readers' Choice Awards.

He and his wife of 31 years Garna reside have three children - Chaz Donahue (28); Lauren Watson (25); and Alex Donahue (12). They are active members of Oak Hill Baptist Church.

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