Gertrude Walton Donahey

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Gertrude Walton Donahey
41st Ohio State Treasurer
In office
January 11, 1971 – January 10, 1983
GovernorJohn J. Gilligan
Jim Rhodes
Preceded byJohn D. Herbert
Succeeded byMary Ellen Withrow
Personal details
Gertrude Walton

(1908-08-04)August 4, 1908
Tuscarawas County, Ohio
DiedJuly 11, 2004(2004-07-11) (aged 95)
Bexley, Ohio
Resting placeEast Avenue Cemetery, New Philadelphia, Ohio
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)John W. Donahey

Gertrude Walton Donahey (August 4, 1908 – July 11, 2004) was an American politician of the Democratic party who served as Ohio State Treasurer from 1971 to 1983.


Donahey was born in Goshen Township, Tuscarawas County, Ohio. She earned her bachelor's at Mann's Business College in Columbus, Ohio and went to work at the Office of the Ohio Adjutant General's Business and Finance Division.[1] She was married to John W. Donahey, who served for a time as Lieutenant Governor of Ohio. Her father-in-law, A. Victor Donahey, was a Governor of Ohio and a member of the United States Senate.[1]

She was chosen as a delegate to the Democratic National Conventions in 1964 and 1968 and represented Ohio on the Party's platform and resolution committee. She was hired in 1964 by U.S. Senator Stephen M. Young as his executive assistant.[1] She ran in the Democratic presidential primary in 1976 as a "favorite daughter." She wasn't a serious candidate, but rather a placeholder for the party to control delegate votes in Ohio.

In 1970, Donahey was the first woman to be elected to a statewide executive office in Ohio, and second to Ohio Supreme Court judge Florence Ellinwood Allen, as Ohio State Treasurer. She held the position until 1983 in light of an embezzlement scandal which took $1.3 million from her office.[1][2] The embezzlement was carried out in 1978 by head cashier, Elizabeth Jane Boerger and her private business associate, Robert W. Yeazell. The accounting firm, Price Waterhouse & Company, who undertook the 1978 audit did it in 1981 after Boerger had left her position. The pair were indicted for the embezzlement on August 12, 1982.[3][4]

She died in Bexley, Ohio, a suburb of Columbus, aged 95.


  1. ^ a b c d "Gertrude W. Donahey - Ohio History Central". Retrieved 2015-12-21.
  2. ^ "Toledo Blade - Google News Archive Search". Retrieved 2015-12-21.
  3. ^ "AROUND THE NATION; 2 Indicted in Ohio Case Of Missing $1.1 Million". The New York Times. 1982-08-12. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2015-12-21.
  4. ^ "OHIO AUDIT FINDS THEFT OF $400,000". Retrieved 2018-10-30.

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