Wayne State University

Alumni Accomplishments

James Fisher
James Fisher '76, was named by Gov. Rick Snyder as one of 15 appointments to the newly created Indigent Defense Commission, which aims to improve legal representation for low-income criminal defendants. The board collects data necessary for the review of indigent defense services in Michigan, and creates standards and requirements. Fisher, previously chief judge of Barry County Circuit Court, will chair the commission. He is an attorney with Law Weathers where his primary practice areas are arbitration and mediation. He will represent members submitted by the Michigan Judges Association.

June 24, 2014
Susan Reed
Susan Reed '76, was awarded the Unsung Hero Award by the State Bar of Michigan. Reed, a Detroit resident, is a veteran criminal defense attorney and president of the Wayne County Criminal Defense Bar Association.

September 19, 2014
Dawn Van Hoek
Dawn Van Hoek '76, has been awarded as a Champion of Justice by the Michigan State Bar. Van Hoek of Ann Arbor is director of the State Appellate Defender Office and past president of the Women Lawyers Association of Michigan.

September 19, 2014
Dawn Van Hoek
Dawn Van Hoek '76, was named one of 30 "Leaders in the Law" for 2015 by Michigan Lawyers Weekly. She is director of the State Appellate Defender Office.

February 10, 2015
Freddie Burton
Freddie Burton '76, was named as the new chief justice for the Wayne County Probate Court to serve the rest of 2015 in the role. New chief justices for several courts in the state will be selected in 2016.  

August 6, 2015
Richard Marek
Richard Marek '76, was elected president of the Vermont State Historical Society. He ended 12 years of service in the Vermont House of Representatives earlier this year, after retiring from practicing corporate law.

September 1, 2015
Adam Shakoor
Adam Shakoor '76, of Adam Shakoor & Associates PC was chosen by the State Bar of Michigan to be honored with the Frank J. Kelley Distinguished Public Service Award. Shakoor served as Detroit deputy mayor and as chief judge of 33rd District Court in Detroit.

September 18, 2015
James “Jim” Fisher '76, has joined Dickinson Wright's Grand Rapids office as of counsel.

January 25, 2016
Bruce Vandegrift
Bruce Vandegrift '76, has been named personal trust business development officer for Chemical Bank Wealth Management's west Michigan region.

March 15, 2016
Hon. Isidore Torres
Hon. Isidore Torres '76, was appointed director of the Wayne County Fraud and Corruption Investigation Unit. Torres, who earned a bachelor's degree from Michigan State University, is of counsel with Williams Acosta in Detroit.

May 13, 2016
David DuMouchel
David DuMouchel '75, of Butzel Long was named to the Top 100 list by Michigan Super Lawyers magazine.

September 19, 2014
Chokwe Lumumba '75, who died in 2014, was honored by the Detroit City Council, which is adding a second street sign to Warren Avenue, naming it for him. Lumumba, a longtime civil rights activist, was mayor of Jackson, Miss., at the time of his death. 

March 24, 2015
George Sinas
George Sinas '75, a senior partner at Sinas Dramis Brake Boughton & McIntyre PC in Lansing, gave a presentation on the state's auto no-fault law during a People's Law School session in East Lansing. People's Law School, sponsored by the Sinas Dramis law firm, Wayne Law and Michigan Association for Justice, is open to the community.

September 22, 2015
Brian Mackie '75, was appointed by Governor Rick Snyder to the Crime Victim Services Commission. Mackie is the prosecuting attorney of Washtenaw County.  

November 18, 2015
Timothy Pickard '74, retired after 20 years as judge as Lenawee County Circuit Court. He also has signed an agreement with the Michigan Court Administrative Office to serve on special assignments in Lenawee County and the northern Michigan counties of Mackinac, Emmet, Charlevoix and Muskegon, as well as on state appeals court panels.  

April 25, 2014
Roger Cook
Roger Cook '74, has been selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America 2015 in the areas of Litigation and Controversy - Tax, Tax Law. He is with Honigman.

September 5, 2014
Gene Esshaki
Gene Esshaki '74, of Abbott Nicholson PC was named to the Top 100 list by Michigan Super Lawyers magazine.

September 19, 2014
Michael Pitt
Michael Pitt '74, of Pitt McGehee Palmer & Rivers PC was named to the Top 100 list by Michigan Super Lawyers magazine.

September 19, 2014
Michael Pitt
Michael Pitt '74, has been awarded as a Champion of Justice by the State Bar of Michigan. Pitt of Huntington Woods is a founding member of Pitt McGehee Palmer & Rivers PC and specializes in employment law and civil rights litigation.

September 19, 2014
Michael Pitt
Michael Pitt '74, was interviewed about tort reform for an Asked and Answered column in the Detroit Legal News.

November 13, 2014
M. Richard Knoblock '74, is retiring as judge of 52nd Circuit Court in Huron County. He has held the seat for 36 years.

December 5, 2014
Donald Sanderson '74, is retiring from the 2B District Court bench. The judge has held the seat since 1978.

December 28, 2014
Thomas Guyer
Thomas Guyer '74, was honored by the Fair Housing Center of Metropolitan Detroit during its annual Attorney Appreciation Awards. Guyer is a partner with Guyer Rose PLLC and a volunteer attorney with Legal Aid and Defender Association Inc. who has prevented many evictions.

April 23, 2015
Gene Esshaki
Gene Esshaki '74, wrote an article, "Judicial Intervention in Arbitration Proceedings Pre-Award," published in the June Michigan Bar Journal.

June 17, 2015
Daniel Kelly
Daniel Kelly '74, a St. Clair County Circuit Court judge, was the subject of a feature story, "Judge Dan and Mary Kelly together in law," in The Times Herald.

September 1, 2015
Timothy Baughman
Timothy Baughman '74, was chosen by the State Bar of Michigan to be honored with the Frank J. Kelley Distinguished Public Service Award. Baughman retired from his position as chief of research, training and appeals with the Wayne County Prosecutor's Office in April, although he remains on staff part time offering legal advice and work on appellate briefs

September 18, 2015
Janet Cooper '74, will be posthumously inducted into the 32nd class of the Michigan Women's Hall of Fame. She was a civil rights advocate. 

September 21, 2015
Dennis Hertel '74, was appointed professor by the National Defense University for the Near East South Asia Center for Strategic Studies. The former congressman has addressed defense officials from 28 nations, and he remains of-counsel to the Franklin Partnership in Washington, D.C.

November 3, 2015
Joan Young
Joan Young '74, was presented with the first Justice Marilyn J. Kelly Award for Outstanding Service. This award was named after retired Michigan Supreme Court Justice Marilyn J. Kelly. Young is currently chief judge pro tempore of the circuit court and serves in the family division. She is also the presiding judge of the men's section of the Oakland County Adult Treatment Court.

December 9, 2015
Michael Pitt
Michael Pitt '74, was selected vice president of the board of Public Justice, a Washington, D.C.-based national public interest firm. Pitt is a founding member of Pitt McGehee Palmer & Rivers PC in Royal Oak. He earned his bachelor's degree from Michigan State University in 1971.

August 24, 2016
Michael Pitt
Michael Pitt '74, was selected for the 2017 Distinguished Service Award by the State Bar of Michigan's Labor & Employment Section. Pitt is co-founding partner of Pitt McGehee Palmer & Rivers in Royal Oak. He earned his bachelor's degree from Michigan State University in 1971.

January 25, 2017
Louis Ognisanti '73, was reappointed by the governor to Michigan's Workers' Compensation Board of Magistrates. He was first appointed to the board in 2011. He previously worked the Braun Kendrick Finkbeiner PLC law firm where he specialized in workers' compensation issues.

January 27, 2015
Roy Gotham '73, announced his retirement after 25 years as Gogebic and Ontonagon County circuit court judge. The retirement also marks his 42 years in the legal profession in both Ontonagon and Gogebic counties.

December 9, 2015
Robert Hudson
Robert Hudson '72, has been instrumental in planning the May 23 annual gala and awards ceremony of the French American Chamber of Commerce Michigan Chapter. Hudson is president emeritus of the chapter and a shareholder with the Detroit office of Butzel Long. The FACC is a not-for-profit business organization committed to the improvement of economic, commercial and financial relations between France and the United States.

April 3, 2014
Lawrence Katz
Lawrence Katz '72, was presented with the 2013 "Barbara R. Levine Award in Recognition of Excellence in Appellate Advocacy" by the Appellate Defender Commission in March 2014. The annual award honors a Michigan Appellate Assigned Counsel System roster member whose appellate advocacy achieves outstanding results or who demonstrates extraordinary commitment on behalf of appellate assigned clients. His article, "Preserving Issues for Appeal in Criminal Cases," appeared in the October 2013 issue of the Michigan Bar Journal. His article, "Amanda Knox: An American's Journey through the Italian Justice System," appeared in the Fall 2013 issue of the National Italian American Bar Association News.

April 8, 2014
William Swor
William Swor '72, was named by Gov. Rick Snyder as one of 15 appointments to the newly created Indigent Defense Commission, which aims to improve legal representation for low-income criminal defendants. The board collects data necessary for the review of indigent defense services in Michigan, and creates standards and requirements. Swor, an attorney with William W. Swor, will represent members submitted by the Criminal Defense Attorney Association of Michigan.

June 24, 2014
Michael Hluchaniuk
Michael Hluchaniuk '72, will retire as a Magistrate Judge for the Eastern District of Michigan, a position he's held since 2007.

October 5, 2015
John R. Runyan
John R. Runyan '72, wrote a book review of "A Good Killing," written by Allison Leotta, who grew up in Michigan. His review appears in the May issue of the Michigan Bar Journal. Read it here. Runyan is managing director of Sachs Waldman in Detroit.

May 6, 2016
Graham Ward
Graham Ward '72, was named director of the Western Michigan University-Cooley Center for the Study and Resolution of Conflict in Grand Rapids. He earned his bachelor's degree from Western Michigan University.

August 9, 2016
James F. Graves
James F. Graves '72, was named a 2017 "Leader in the Law" by Michigan Lawyers Weekly. He is a partner at the Sinas Dramis Law Firm in Lansing. Graves earned his bachelor's degree from the University of Michigan.

February 9, 2017
William Sankbeil
William Sankbeil '71, of Kerr Russell and Weber PLC  was named to the Top 100 list by Michigan Super Lawyers magazine.

September 19, 2014
Jon Muth
Jon Muth '71, was recognized by the Grand Rapids Bar Association with the Donald R. Worsfold Distinguished Service Award. Muth has been honored numerous times over the course of his career. He served as the president of the State Bar of Michigan for two terms, and was given the Robert P. Hudson Award for his impact on influencing the direction of the profession. Muth has supported and served many community organizations including the Grand Rapids Art Museum and the Grand Rapids Ballet. However, the group his name is most connected with is the Legal Assistance Center. He was instrumental to LAC's early success, and has dedicated more than 10 years to this initiative which now serves more than 17,000 persons annually. He is with law firm Miller Johnson of Grand Rapids.

April 30, 2014
Jon Muth
Jon Muth '71, of Miller Johnson was named to the Top 10 and the Top 100 list by Michigan Super Lawyers magazine.

September 19, 2014
John McSorley
John McSorley '71, a shareholder with Garan Lucow Miller PC, received the Respected Advocate Award from the Michigan Association for Justice.

September 19, 2014
Dan Dozier
Dan Dozier '71, wrote a chapter in the recently published book titled, Alternative Dispute Resolution in State and Local Governments, Analysis & Case Studies. Dozier's chapter is "Evaluating Scope of Services and Provider Qualifications in State ADR Programs." He is of counsel with Press and Dozier, LLC in Bethesda, Maryland.

January 6, 2016
The Honorable Marilyn Kelly
The Honorable Marilyn Kelly '71, presented "Has America Fulfilled Its Promise of Equal Justice for All?" as part of the Escalating Inequality Task Force's 2016 Winter Speaker Series.

February 24, 2016
The Honorable Marilyn Kelly
The Honorable Marilyn Kelly '71, presented "Has America Fulfilled Its Promise of Equal Justice for All?" at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Petoskey. Kelly earned her master's degree from Middlebury College and her bachelor's degree from Eastern Michigan University.

April 3, 2016
Clark Johnson
Clark Johnson '70, was elected by the students of the Michigan State University College of Law as the Distinguished Doctrinal Faculty Member of the Year for 2014. He served as assistant attorney general of Michigan and was a partner in the law firm of Schmidt Nahas Coburn and Johnson. He joined the law college faculty in 1973. He teaches Contracts, Equity, Insurance Law, Medical-Legal Problems, Mortgages, Property and Secured Transactions.

May 6, 2014
Martin Reisig
Martin Reisig '70, was named the Best Lawyers' 2015 Detroit Mediation "Lawyer of the Year." Only a single lawyer in each practice area in each community is honored as the "Lawyer of the Year."

August 19, 2014
William Murphy
William Murphy '70, chief judge of the Michigan Court of Appeals, was honored with the Judicial Excellence Award by the Michigan Association for Justice at its annual banquet.

June 15, 2015
William Murphy
William Murphy '70, is the recipient of the National Center for State Courts' 2015 Distinguished Service Award. It is one of the highest awards the organization presents. 

October 5, 2015
John Loeks
John Loeks '70, was elected chair of the National Assocation of Theater Owners. He is CEO of Celebration Cinemas which owns and operates movie theaters throughout Michigan. 

October 19, 2015
William B. Murphy
William B. Murphy '70, was elected president of the Council of Chief Judges of the State Courts of Appeal, a national association dedicated to improving the administration of justice in state appellate courts. Murphy, who has served as judge for the Michigan Court of Appeals since 1988, earned his bachelor's degree from Michigan State University.

November 23, 2016
Richard Burstein
Richard Burstein '69, has been selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America 2015 in the area of Real Estate Law. He is with Honigman.

September 5, 2014
William Dornbos
William Dornbos '69, of Varnum LLP was selected for Best Lawyers in America 2015 in the practice areas of banking and finance law, bankruptcy and creditor debtor rights/ insolvency and reorganization law, Native American law and real estate law.

February 20, 2015
Donald Lansky
Donald Lansky '69, (LL.M., '72) of Couzens Lansky was named to the 2015 Michigan Super Lawyers list.

September 11, 2015
Richard J. Burstein
Richard J. Burstein '69, a real estate partner at Honigman Miller Schwartz and Cohn LLP, was named to the 2015 Commercial Real Estate Hall of Fame by Midwest Real Estate News.

February 18, 2016
Richard J. Burstein
Richard J. Burstein '69, a partner with Honigman Miller Schwartz and Cohn LLP, was ranked a senior statesman in real estate by Chambers USA, the directory of leading U.S. business law firms and lawyers. Burstein earned his bachelor's degree from the University of Michigan.

July 6, 2016
Donald M. Lansky
Donald M. Lansky '69, LL.M. '72, a shareholder Couzens Lansky in Farmington Hills, was named a Michigan Super Lawyer in mergers and acquisitions. He earned his bachelor's degree from Michigan State University.

October 4, 2016
Stanley Prokop
Stanley Prokop '68, has been selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America 2015 in the area of Insurance Law. He is with Plunkett Cooney.

September 8, 2014
Thomas Kienbaum
Thomas Kienbaum '68, of Kienbaum Opperwall Hardy & Pelton PLC was named to the Top 100 list by Michigan Super Lawyers magazine.

September 19, 2014
Charles Filice '68, who at 70 is the longest-serving district judge in the state among those currently on the bench, will officially step down Jan. 1 when his term ends. He is judge of Lansing's 54A District Court. 

December 8, 2014
Stanley Prokop
Stanley Prokop '68, was nominated by his peers to the inaugural list of "Leading Lawyers" in Michigan for Leading Lawyers magazine. He is with Plunkett Cooney.

December 16, 2014
Edward Haroutunian
Edward Haroutunian '68, was inducted into the Heritage Foundation's Hall of Fame Gallery. The purpose of the Heritage Hall of Fame celebration is to recognize exceptional leaders from various ethnic backgrounds that have made outstanding contributions to the American way of life. Haroutunian has been a member of the Heritage Foundation for 25 years.

December 22, 2014
Daniel Matson
Daniel Matson '68, retired after 45 years as city attorney for DeWitt. In private practice, Matson also has served as president of the Clinton County Bar Association, president of the Michigan Association of Municipal Attorneys, and president of the Michigan Municipal League Legal Defense Fund. He also has served as chairman on the public corporations law section and the arts, communications, entertainment and sports law section for the State Bar of Michigan.

August 27, 2015
Joel Serlin
Joel Serlin '68, received the Oakland County Bar Association's Professionalism Award. He is the first and only Oakland County Circuit Court Ombudsman and a senior partner with Seyburn Kahn in Southfield. 

September 2, 2015
Stanley Prokop
Stanley Prokop '68, a partner with Plunkett Cooney, was selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America 2016. He was recognized in the practice area of Insurance Law.

September 11, 2015
Donald Wagner
Donald Wagner '68, of Couzens Lansky was named to the 2015 Michigan Super Lawyers list.

September 11, 2015
Stanley Prokop
Stanley Prokop '68, of counsel with Plunkett Cooney, was named to the 2015 Michigan Super Lawyers list.

November 11, 2015
Stanley Prokop
Stanley Prokop '68, of counsel with Plunkett Cooney, was named by DBusiness magazine to its 2016 list of Top Lawyers. 

December 2, 2015
Arnold Weintraub '68, was appointed as a director of AfterMaster Audio. He is the company's patent and intellectual property attorney and a member of The Weintraub Group, P.L.C.

December 9, 2015
Donald A. Wagner
Donald A. Wagner '68, a shareholder of Couzens Lansky in Farmington Hills, was named a Michigan Super Lawyer in banking. He earned his bachelor's degree from Eastern Michigan University.

October 4, 2016
Stanley Prokop
Stanley Prokop '68, of counsel with Plunkett Cooney in Detroit, was recognized by The Best Lawyers in America 2017 for insurance law. He also was named a 2016 Michigan Super Lawyer in insurance coverage. He earned his bachelor's degree from the University of Michigan.

October 17, 2016
Stanley Prokop
Stanley Prokop '68, of counsel with Plunkett Cooney in Detroit, was named by DBusiness magazine to its list of 2017 Top Lawyers in Insurance Law. He earned his bachelor's degree from the University of Michigan.

December 13, 2016
Brian Einhorn
Brian Einhorn '67, was admitted to the U.S. Supreme Court bar. He is president of the State Bar of Michigan and practices with Collins Einhorn Farrell.

June 9, 2014
Fred Mester
Fred Mester '67, addressed the Inter-American Committee, the judicial arm of the Organization of American States, in Washington, D.C., on March 25, 2014, on the issue of mandatory life sentences without parole for juveniles in light of the 2012 U.S. Supreme Court decision in Miller v. Alabama. Mester, with several other Michigan judges and attorneys, was involved with a petition drive advocating for the court's decision to be retroactive for minors sentenced to life without parole in Michigan. Mester, a retired Oakland County Circuit judge, works with various city administrations on community issues today.

June 12, 2014
Mark Hauser
Mark Hauser '67, of Maddin Hauser Roth & Heller PC has been selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America 2015 in the area of Real Estate Law.

August 19, 2014
Brian Einhorn
Brian Einhorn '67, has been selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America 2015. He was recognized in the practice areas of Legal Malpractice Law - Defendants, Personal Injury Litigation - Defendants, Product Liability Litigation - Defendants, Professional Malpractice Law - Defendants. He is with Collins Einhorn Farrell PC.

August 19, 2014
Jack Wheatley '67, was reappointed by Gov. Rick Snyder to the Michigan Compensation Appellate Commission, which reviews appeals decisions in cases involving unemployment insurance benefits and workers' compensation.  Wheatley served as a labor law attorney with Lacey & Jones LLP, and also worked as a special assistant to the attorney general representing the state in workers' compensation second injury fund cases and served as director of the Michigan Unemployment Agency and director of the Bureau of Workers' Disability Compensation.

August 19, 2014
Gerald Thurswell
Gerald Thurswell '67, of Thurswell Law was named to the Top 100 list by Michigan Super Lawyers magazine.

September 19, 2014
Brian Einhorn
Brian Einhorn '67, was selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America 2016. Einhorn was named Metro Detroit Lawyer of the Year for his work in Professional Malpractice Law-Defendants. He is with Southfield-based Collins Einhorn Farrell.

August 18, 2015
Jack Couzens II
Jack Couzens II '67, of Couzens Lansky was named to the 2015 Michigan Super Lawyers list.

September 11, 2015
Brian Einhorn
Brian Einhorn '67, is celebrating the 45th anniversary of Collins Einhorn Farrell PC, the Southfield law firm he joined in 1971. Einhorn earned his bachelor's degree from Eastern Michigan University.

April 25, 2016
Brian Einhorn
Brian Einhorn '67, of Collins Einhorn Farrell PC in Southfield, has been recognized by Best Lawyers as the 2017 Legal Malpractice Law - Defendants "Lawyer of the Year" in metro Detroit. Einhorn earned his bachelor's degree from Eastern Michigan University in 1963.

August 15, 2016
Gerald Thurswell
Gerald Thurswell '67, has been selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America 2017. He was recognized in the practice areas of medical malpractice law - plaintiffs and personal injury litigation - plaintiffs. Thurswell founded The Thurswell Law Firm in Southfield. He earned his bachelor's degree in marketing from Wayne State University.

August 24, 2016
Brian D. Einhorn
Brian D. Einhorn '67, of Collins Einhorn Farrell PC in Southfield was named a Michigan Super Lawyer. He earned his bachelor's degree from the Eastern Michigan University.

October 3, 2016
Jack S. Couzens
Jack S. Couzens '67, a shareholder of Couzens Lansky in Farmington Hills, was named a Michigan Super Lawyer in estate planning and probate. He earned his bachelor's degree from the University of Michigan.

October 4, 2016

Advocating for justice, serving the community, revitalizing Detroit and Michigan