Executive Committee members

  • Rasul Raheem

    Rasul Raheem, ’84 J.D., ’03 LL.M.


    Raheem is a senior counsel at Dykema. He has over 30 years of experience representing large financial institutions. He provides broad-based counseling and legal services for loan documentation, financial services and regulatory matters, credit advisories, restructuring and recovery workouts, bankruptcy matters, letters of credit and litigation. He is a member of the American Bar Association, National Bar Association, Detroit Bar Association, Oakland County Bar Association and Wolverine Bar Association. He is a past president of the D. Augustus Straker Bar Association. Raheem was named as a 2021 Best Lawyer in America. 

  • Image of Judge Debra Nance

    Judge Debra Nance ’99

    Vice Chair

    Nance was elected judge of the 46th District Court, where she has served since January 2013. Before and after taking the bench, Nance has been involved in community projects and has developed and presented numerous informational programs for youth and adults.          

    Nance is a member of the State Bar of Michigan, Michigan District Judges Association, Oakland County District Court Judges Association, Association of Black Judges of Michigan, National Association of Women Judges, National Bar Association Judicial Council, Wolverine Bar Association, D. Augustus Straker Bar Association, Women Lawyers Association of Michigan and Black Women Lawyers Association of Michigan. 

  • Jessica Mills

    Jessica M. Mills ’16


    Mills is an associate attorney at Bush Seyferth. Her practice focuses on first- and third-party automobile litigation, along with defending Michigan no-fault claims for auto insurance carriers. Previously, she worked as an associate attorney at a prominent Detroit-based civil rights and personal injury firm.          

    While a student at Wayne Law, Mills participated in the Legal Advocacy for People with Cancer Clinic and won the Silver Key Award. She is a member of the State Bar of Michigan, Detroit Metropolitan Bar Association, Michigan Defense Trial Counsel and Wolverine Bar Association. Mills also sits on the board of directors for the Wolverine Bar Association, serves as the chair of the Minority Bar Passage Program and provides pro bono legal assistance to those who are unable to afford counsel. 

  • Lawrence C. Mann

    Lawrence Mann ’80

    Founding Member

    Mann is a part-time faculty member at Wayne Law. Previously, he served as law clerk to former Judge Horace Gilmore of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, joined Dykema as an associate in the firm’s litigation section and was a full-time faculty member at Wayne Law where he earned tenure as an associate professor. Mann served as former Governor James Blanchard's special counselor on products liability, and in that capacity, he published a study of Michigan products liability law.  

    Mann later joined the partnership of Bowman and Brooke as a specialist in vehicle products liability litigation before returning to Wayne Law as an associate professor. He then returned to Bowman and Brooke from where he retired as managing partner in 2014. In addition to serving on the faculty at Wayne Law, Mann has been the interim director of clinical education and associate director of professional skills, among other positions. 

  • Elliott Hall

    Elliott S. Hall ’65

    Honorary Chair

    Hall previously served as Ford Motor Co.’s vice president of Washington Affairs, advocating for a wide range of automotive, regulatory and legislative issues. He retired from Ford as vice president of dealer development, where he was responsible for the expansion of the company’s minority and woman dealer network. Hall was the first African American to serve as a vice president for Ford Motor Co. 

    He’s held a series of positions in the Detroit legal community, including chief assistant prosecutor of Wayne County and law director for the city of Detroit. Hall was the first African American to serve as corporate counsel for the city of Detroit. He previously was a senior partner at Dykema in Washington, D.C. 

    Hall is the recipient of the Human Relations Institute Civic Achievement Award from American Jewish Committee, Distinguished Alumni Award from Wayne Law, and the President’s Award from both the National Bar Association and the Wolverine Bar Association.  

  • Judge Leonia Lloyd

    Judge Leonia J. Lloyd ’79

    Lloyd was elected to the 36th District Court in 1992 and later became a Drug Court judge.  

    Before becoming a judge, she was a partner in the law firm of Lloyd and Lloyd, specializing in entertainment and civil law. Lloyd and her late sister, Leona L. Lloyd, were the country’s first twin judges to sit on the same bench at the same time. Lloyd established a scholarship at Wayne State University in memory of her sister that assists students pursuing a law degree.  

    Among the many awards and recognitions received, she was awarded a Champion of Justice Award by the State Bar of Michigan and a Sojourner Truth Award by the National Association of Negro Business and Professional Women’s Club. Lloyd retired in 2016 after serving 24 years on the bench. 

  • Erika Matthews-Jackson

    Ericka Matthews-Jackson ’97

    Matthews-Jackson is the senior director of undergraduate admissions for Wayne State University. She serves as a key advisor and member of the enrollment management leadership team in the areas of enhanced student experience, undergraduate enrollment planning and management. 

    Previously, Matthews-Jackson was assistant dean of admissions and student affairs at Wayne State University Law School; associate director of development and director of the Damon J. Keith Law Collection of African-American Legal History at Wayne Law; litigation attorney at Sommers Schwartz; and senior major gift officer at the University of Michigan. 

  • Robert Thomas

    Robert E. Thomas ’13

    Thomas is a patent search consultant and the chairman of the Board of Zoning Appeals for the city of Detroit. He also works in the Advanced Engineering group at Ford Motor Co. covering global regulatory and privacy affairs. He is a former engineer with the nuclear defense industry and the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.     

    Thomas has held positions with the state of Michigan Foster Care Review Board; Foster Care Alumni of America; Foster Care Work Group; Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc.; and MacDowell Preparatory Academy. He is a past fellow of the Michigan Political Leadership Program, New Leaders Council and BMe Vanguard. Thomas received the Vanguard Detroit Young Professionals Rising Star Award; was an honoree of Michigan Chronicle’s Men of Excellence and DBusiness Magazine’s 30 in their Thirties. 

  • Judge Christopher Blount

    Judge Christopher M. Blount, ’03 B.A., ’06 J.D., ’09 M.U.P.

    Blount was appointed judge of Michigan’s 36th District Court in 2017. He was elected to that same office in 2018.      

    Blount is a lifelong Detroiter and believes in being involved with organizations that seek to empower and uplift the community. These include AFSCME Council 25 Local 542, Detroit Branch NAACP, Wolverine Bar Association, Wayne County Criminal Defense Bar Association, Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History, St. John’s Episcopal Church, University District Community Association, Isaiah Literacy Program and Belle Isle Conservancy. Blount provides free legal information to the community and has conducted numerous expungement workshops throughout Detroit. He also is a golf coach at Communication and Media Arts High School. 

  • Not pictured

    • Judge Patricia L. Jefferson ’86
    • Judge Michael E. Wagner ’87
    • Steve Williams ’09, ’12
    • Monica Smith ’09
    • Jerry Dorsey IV ’86