Sheryl Maxfield was appointed Director of the Department of Commerce by Governor Mike DeWine in January 2019. She serves as member of the Governor’s cabinet and is responsible for the overall leadership and direction of this very diverse department.
Maxfield has a long history of public service. Prior to her appointment as director, she had a lengthy career at the Ohio Attorney General’s Office. She joined that office in 1984 and served in various capacities during her time including Assistant Chief of the Court of Claims section, Chief of the Executive Agencies section and Chief of the Health & Human Services section. During her final twelve years there she was the Attorney General’s Chief Counsel, with oversight on legal matters ranging from Antitrust to Workers’ Compensation. She served under eight different Attorneys General over a thirty-four-year period.
During her career, Maxfield has been recognized by her colleagues for her professionalism and legal expertise. She received an AGO Professionalism Award in 1997 and in 1999 was the inaugural recipient of the Simon B. Karas Award for Outstanding Legal Contribution to the Attorney General’s Office. In 2021 she was commended for her service to the legal profession and community as the 2021 Ohio Women’s Bar Association Government in Action Honoree.
As Director of the Department of Commerce Maxfield oversees the state’s leading regulatory agency. The department is focused on promoting the growth, success and safety of businesses in real estate, securities, liquor control, fire safety, financial institutions, industrial compliance, medical marijuana and unclaimed funds. She is a statutory member of numerous boards and commissions including the Ohio Access to Justice Foundation and the Ohio Housing Finance Agency (OHFA). She currently serves as the OHFA board chair.
Maxfield earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Bowling Green State University and a law degree from the University of Toledo, College of Law. She is married to lawyer Michael Maxfield and they are the proud parents of two adult children.