Sen. Oliver Ocasek (D) from Summit County served in the Ohio Senate from 1959-1986. He held various leadership positions, and was elected by his peers as President pro tempore in 1974 when the Democrats took over Senate leadership. Sen. Ocasek was the first President of the Senate that was also a sitting Senator. (Before 1979, the Lieutenant Governor presided over the Senate.) When the democrats lost the majority in 1980, Harry Meshel replaced Ocasek as the top Senate democrat.
Ocasek ran for Congress a few times over his career, but was never successful in his bid. After his Senate service, Ocasek taught at the University of Akron and Kent State University, and served on the Ohio State School Board from 1992-1998. He did not seek re-election due to failing health, and died from cancer on June 25, 1999.