County Attorney adds to leadership team following retirement of First Assistant

September 26, 2019

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Jefferson County Attorney Mike O’Connell is adding to his senior leadership team with the retirement of the office’s First Assistant, Matthew Golden, on October 1. Eric Graninger replaces Golden in the office’s highest appointed position.

Graninger has been an Assistant County Attorney since 2009 and his primary practice was in the office’s Employment and Labor section. Most recently he served as Civil Division Director, responsible for overseeing the office’s duties as the legal representative for all of Louisville Metro Government. He spent 18 years with the national office of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), where he rose to be their general counsel, prior to joining the County Attorney’s office.

“There is no one that I know more worthy than Eric Graninger to take on this critical role,” O’Connell said. “Matt and Eric have worked closely over the past years and have been working toward a smooth transition to best serve the people of Jefferson County.”

Earlier in his career, Graninger served as a staff attorney for the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, as a law clerk to the late Judge Hugh Dillin of the Federal District Court, and was Editor in Chief of his law review at Indiana University in Indianapolis.

In a corresponding move, Sarah Martin has been promoted to Civil Division Director as Graninger assumes the role of First Assistant. Martin became an Assistant County Attorney in 2008 and has served as the office’s lead lawyer for matters related to the Metro Council since 2016. Her previous service with the office includes leadership roles with the Louisville Metro Human Relations Commission, the Jefferson County Board of Elections and as a trial court prosecutor. Martin served in private practice prior to becoming an Assistant County Attorney and is a graduate of the University of Louisville’s Brandeis School of Law and Miami of Ohio University.

Martin joins Ingrid Geiser (Criminal Division Director) and Diane Fleming (Child Support Division Director) in leading the office’s three respective divisions. Both Geiser and Fleming have more than 20 years’ experience each as lawyers for the Commonwealth. LeeAnn Swanson serves as the office’s Chief Financial Officer.

Josh Abner has been named Executive Administrator. Abner, the office’s Communications Director since 2016, will retain his role as the office’s public information officer and take on additional duties as an adviser in policy development and intergovernmental relations.

“These are challenging times as we face uncertain state and local budgets but we must stay true to our duties to represent the Commonwealth of Kentucky and Louisville Metro Government,” O’Connell said. “I am confident that we have the right team in place to continue to do the next right thing on behalf of people in Jefferson County. I thank Matt Golden for his immeasurable contributions to this office and to our community.”

Golden leaves the Jefferson County Attorney’s Office after first starting as an entry-level law clerk in 1995. He held nearly every role possible during his time with the office, serving as a trial court prosecutor, a DUI prosecutor, head of vice prosecution, civil litigation defense attorney, Tax Director, Civil Division Director and Second Assistant. He rose to the top position earlier this year following the death of his mentor Julie Hardesty, the office’s longtime First Assistant who had held the role since 2001. Golden moves into private practice as a partner with Daniels Associates LLP.

The Jefferson County Attorney’s Office is one of the largest legal offices in the Commonwealth of Kentucky with more than 330 employees, including approximately 130 attorneys.