The Senate President is elected at the beginning of each two-year General Assembly. The current President of the Ohio Senate is Larry Obhof. The title and function of the presiding officer of the state Senate has evolved over time. From 1803 until 1851, a speaker served as head of the Senate. As part of Ohio's second constitution of 1851, the lieutenant governor was assigned the duties of presiding officer. For more than 100 years, the highest ranking legislator and leader of the majority party was the president pro tempore.

It wasn't until 1979 that the position of Senate President as we know it today was established. In the 1978 election, Ohioans elected the governor and the lieutenant governor as a ticket for the first time, changing the lieutenant governor's duties. This cleared the way for the Senate majority party to select a Senate President from within its ranks to preside over the body.

Pete Fact : The first presiding officer of the Ohio Senate was Nathaniel Massie of Ross County.
For more information about the Senate President, his duties, and the duties of the leaders representing the majority and minority caucuses, please visit the Senate Majority and Minority leadership pages.