Darrell McGraw

Darrell McGraw
33rd Attorney General of West Virginia
In office
January 18, 1993  January 14, 2013
Governor Gaston Caperton
Cecil H. Underwood
Bob Wise
Joe Manchin
Earl Ray Tomblin
Preceded by Mario Palumbo
Succeeded by Patrick Morrisey
Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia
In office
Justice of the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia
In office
January 1, 1976  December 31, 1988
Preceded by Donald R. Wilson
Succeeded by Margaret Workman
Personal details
Born (1936-11-08) November 8, 1936
McGraws-Tipple, West Virginia
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Jorea Marple (four children)
Residence Charleston, West Virginia
Alma mater West Virginia University
Profession Lawyer
Religion Methodist

Darrell Vivian McGraw, Jr. (born November 8, 1936 in McGraws-Tipple, Wyoming County, West Virginia) is an American Democratic politician. He is the brother of former West Virginia State Supreme Court Justice and state Senate President Warren McGraw.

He was elected the state supreme court for a single 12 year term in 1976. He was elected state attorney general in 1992 and re-elected in 1996, 2000, 2004, and 2008.[1] He is the only person to have held both offices. He lost his re-election bid for a sixth term in 2012. He received 49% of the vote to Patrick Morrisey's 51%. He filed on January 30, 2016 as a candidate seeking election to the West Virginia state supreme court in 2016, but was defeated.[2]

Early life and education

McGraw graduated from Pineville High School and served two years in the United States Army, stationed in Germany, before beginning his undergraduate career at West Virginia University, where he served as student body president and dedicated the mast of the U.S.S. West Virginia, which still stands as a landmark at the university.

After earning his Juris Doctor at West Virginia University, he began working under Governor Hulett Smith.

Political career

Prior to acting in an official capacity within West Virginian politics, McGraw took a behind the scenes role, serving as counsel to Hulett C. Smith, Governor from 1965 to 1969, and the West Virginia Legislature. For twelve years starting in 1976, he was a state Supreme Court Justice. During his tenure, McGraw upheld the state Freedom of Information Act, ordering that any exemptions that were to be granted related to this legislation were to be extremely limited. In 1980 he officiated at the wedding of Larry Shannon Roberts, a former WCHS weatherman, and Diana Rhodes Lovejoy, a former WV State Tax Dept employee. The wedding was held in the State Capitol Rotunda, the first known wedding to be held at this location.

In 1992 he was elected Attorney General. As Attorney General for the State of West Virginia, he has been involved in many high profile national cases, including the 1998 multi-billion dollar State Tobacco Settlement, which secured billions of dollars for the state of West Virginia. As of a result of the settlement money, West Virginia will save $2.5 billion due to a bond sale that resulted from the settlement.[3] His office also litigated refunds for over 1,200 state residents from DirecTV totaling $152,000.00[4]


While Attorney General, McGraw was criticized by some newspapers, state legislators, tort reform advocates, and the West Virginia Chamber of Commerce, who accuse him of cronyism,[5] benefiting trial lawyers who contribute to his political campaigns, and inappropriate use of public resources.[6] The WV Record is a newspaper financially supported and published by the US Chamber of Commerce.

Election results

Supreme Court

Attorney General


  1. "WV SOS - Elections - Candidate - Online Data Services". Apps.sos.wv.gov. Retrieved 2016-02-01.
  2. “Bond sale cuts teacher pension fund payments to $285 million” The Charleston Gazette (June 27, 2007)
  3. “$125 DIRECTV refunds due to 1,216 in state” Charleston Daily Mail (July 7, 2007)
  4. “Sunshine for Hoods: State AGs and their trial-bar cronies,” The Wall Street Journal (February 20, 2007)
  5. "Special Report: Flouting Laws You Are Charged To Protect: A Critical Look at Fourteen Years in the Office of Attorney General Darrell McGraw" (PDF). Wvrecord.com. June 2007. Retrieved 2016-02-10.
  6. "President and Vice-President : 1976" (PDF). Sos.vw.gov. Retrieved 2016-02-10.
  7. "President : 1988" (PDF). Sos.vw.gov. Retrieved 2016-02-10.
  8. "President : 1996" (PDF). Sos.vw.gov. Retrieved 2016-02-10.
  9. "Welcome to Secretary of State Natalie Tennant's Website" (PDF). Wvsos.com. Retrieved 2016-02-10.
  10. "Welcome to Secretary of State Natalie Tennant's Website" (PDF). Wvsos.com. Retrieved 2016-02-10.
  11. "Welcome to Secretary of State Natalie Tennant's Website" (PDF). Wvsos.com. Retrieved 2016-02-10.
Legal offices
Preceded by
Donald R. Wilson
Justice for the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia
Succeeded by
Margaret Workman
Preceded by
Mario Palumbo
Attorney General of West Virginia
Succeeded by
Patrick Morrisey
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