Legal People ...

Miller Johnson has expanded its Detroit presence with the addition of four attorneys from Abbott Nicholson PC in Troy. William D. Gilbride Jr., Timothy J. Kramer, Daniel G. Kielczewski, and Thomas R. Quilter III join Miller Johnson’s Detroit office and bring experience and career achievements across a variety of industries and legal matters.

Gilbride is a business attorney who has built a reputation resolving disputes before they reach a courtroom. He is also a litigator who has tried many cases in state and federal courts over business, contract, real estate and other matters. Gilbride is a Fellow of the Michigan State Bar Foundation and the Detroit Bar Association. He earned his law degree from the University of Detroit and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan.

Kramer specializes in family law, landlord-tenant disputes, construction law, secured transactions, and commercial litigation. He counsels clients in real estate and real property matters, involving construction liens and bonds with owners, developers and contractors. Kramer is a member of the Detroit Bar Association, the Wayne County Family Bar Association, the State Bar of Michigan Family Law Section, the Catholic Lawyers Society of Metropolitan Detroit, and a Fellow of the Michigan State Bar Foundation. He earned his law degree from the Detroit College of Law (now Michigan State University College of Law) and his bachelor’s degree from Oakland University.

Kielczewski represents clients in commercial law, creditors’ rights, and complex business litigation matters. He works with individuals and business entities in a range of commercial or business matters, including secured and unsecured creditor representation in bankruptcy proceedings, commercial code claims, business torts, shareholder disputes, and construction litigation. Kielczewski is a member of the American Bankruptcy Institute and State b of Michigan.  He earned his law degree from the Detroit College of Law (now Michigan State University College of Law) and his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Michigan.

Quilter focuses on business planning, corporate law, and estate planning. He advises clients on business formation, operations and succession planning, and has represented clients in numerous mergers and acquisitions transactions. He also has practice in estate planning for high-net-worth individuals and business owners. Quilter is a Fellow of the Michigan State Bar Foundation and is active in the Financial and Estate Planning Council of Metropolitan Detroit. He earned his law degrees from Wayne State University Law School and his bachelor’s degree from John Carroll University.

Miller Johnson has 23 attorneys working from the Ally Detroit Center and more than 130 attorneys overall as it continues to promote the growth of Michigan being at the core of the firm’s practice.

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Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer recently announced the appointment of Eric Doeh to the Mental Health Diversion Council.

Doeh is the president and CEO of the Detroit Wayne Integrated Health Network. Additionally, he is an adjunct professor for the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law and previously served as the deputy chief assistant of the drug task force for the U.S. attorney’s office. Doeh received his Bachelor of Arts in political science and English from the University of Michigan and his law degree from the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law.

Doeh is reappointed to represent medicaid pre-paid inpatient health plans for a term commencing April 2, 2024, and expiring January 30, 2028.

The Mental Health Diversion Council is an advisory body to the governor within the Department of Health and Human Services charged to advise and assist in the implementation of a diversion action plan and provide recommendations for statutory, contractual, or procedural changes to improve diversion.    

This appointment is not subject to the advice and consent of the Senate.

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Dickinson Wright
is pleased to announce that Kaitlyn Elias has joined the firm’s Troy office as an associate.

Elias focuses her practice on real estate, landlord tenant, and commercial litigation, as well as marijuana and industrial hemp and telecommunications. She is licensed to practice law in Michigan and the U.S. District Courts for the Eastern and Western Districts of Michigan. She is an active member of the Building Owners Management Association, the Oakland County Bar Association, and the Detroit Bar Association. Elias is also a certified mediator.

Elias is recognized as a leader in her field by Best Lawyers in America “Ones to Watch,” Michigan Super Lawyers Rising Stars, and DBusiness Top Lawyers. She received her B.A. from Western Michigan University and her law degree from Arizona State University Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law. Prior to starting her practice in Michigan, Elias completed a clerkship at the High Court of American Samoa.

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Detroit is pleased to announce the addition of Steven Enwright, from Varnum, as a partner in the firm’s Business practice group.

Enwright specializes in delivering strategic business guidance and providing clients with a broad spectrum of corporate law services, including general corporate counseling, capital raising, mergers and acquisitions (M&A), strategic partnerships, technology agreements, and diverse financings. He has experience in supporting both business entities and investors, with a strong track record in the startup and emerging company sectors. Enwright will act as outside general counsel for a variety of emerging and mid-size businesses and family offices, spanning a variety of industries.

“I am excited to embark on this next stage in my career and what it means for my practice,” said Enwright. “The deep bench of expertise provides comprehensive solutions for all my clients’ needs. Meeting the team at Taft, I look forward to working closely with the immensely talented professionals in Detroit and across the firm.”

Enwright earned his B.A. from Michigan State University, M.BA. from Wayne State School of Business, and his law degrees from Wayne State University Law School.

In addition, Taft Detroit’s Bankruptcy and Restructuring team is being honored at the TMA Transaction of the Year Award dinner or its strategic counsel and implementation of Chapter 11 proceedings for Ark Laboratory.

The Taft team, led by attorneys Judith Greenstone Miller and Kim Ross Clayson represented the Unsecured Creditor’s Committee in the Chapter 11 case of Ark Laboratory. Ark was a medical testing lab that expanded its lab services to meet the unprecedented demand for COVID-19 testing services. When demand for Ark’s services dropped in late 2021, the company was unable to quickly act to reduce its operations to its pre-COVID-19 footprint. This marketplace swing, combined with debt service obligations and other financial pressures, drove the company into bankruptcy last year.

Miller and Clayson discovered Michigan State University had been researching Ark as a potential acquisition, which would allow debt funding to become available. Through a series of negotiations, many of the administrative costs, solutions for a potential dividend for unsecured claims and even measures to save some of Ark’s jobs were outlined by the team.

“When we talk about Taft being an invested partner to clients, winning the TMA Transaction of the Year Award is, in legal terms, our best presentation of evidence,” said Miller. “Receiving this award is a testament to the dedication, hard work, and passion of our team and clients we serve,” noted Clayson.

Taft will be honored for their accomplishments on Tuesday, May 7, at the Kingsley Hotel in Bloomfield Hills.

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Mark Knoth
has been named a Go-To Lawyer for employment law by Michigan Lawyer’s Weekly.

Knoth is chair of Kerr Russell’s Labor, Employment, Employee Benefits & ERISA practice group. He counsels and advises business owners, managers and human resources professionals regarding workplace issues, including civil rights and anti-discrimination laws; employee discipline; wage and hour; overtime; employee leaves; reasonable accommodations; veterans issues; picketing; secondary boycotts; reductions in force; drug testing; unemployment compensation; affirmative action; and union organizing campaigns, among other matters.

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has promoted the following leaders: Lori Thomas Simoncic is chief operating officer, Edward M. Przybylo is director of operations, and Dana Burleigh is director of human resources.

Simoncic is celebrating 24 years with Butzel. She has served in the roles of chief human resources officer and director of human resources, among other positions within the Human Resources Department.  She is engaged in the planning and execution of all aspects of Butzel’s strategic plan to achieve the firm’s vision and short- and long-term growth objectives and all facets of the firm’s operations.

Simoncic is an advocate of employee wellness and providing connections and growth opportunities. She is a member of numerous firm committees. Simoncic also is chair of the firm’s Privacy and Cybersecurity Compliance Committee, and is a member of Butzel’s AI Task Force.

Simoncic is active in the community and has served as an Advisory Board Member at Midnight Golf Program, an organization dedicated to equipping young adults to succeed in college, in their careers, and beyond, through the discipline of golf. She also supports Folds of Honor, an organization that helps dependents of fallen military heroes through scholarships and other support and is an American Dunes Founder. American Dunes is a golf club dedicated to the mission of supporting families of fallen and disabled service members and their families and is the legacy course to the birthplace of Folds of Honor.

Simoncic is a graduate of Central Michigan University (B.S.) and Ball State University (M.A.). She is a member of the Society of Human Resources Management (SHRM) and the Association of Legal Administrators (ALA).

Przybylo leads Butzel’s operations functions in ten office locations throughout the country.  He has concentrated his career in operations and account management within the legal, manufacturing, commercial, and automotive sectors. For more than two decades, Przybylo’s focus has been in the legal industry. His expertise includes deployment of new technology, asset management, client relations, change management, leadership development, contract negotiations, and process improvement.

For nearly a decade, Przybylo has led Butzel’s operations initiatives and directed a staff of professionals in all facets inherent to the efficient and cost-effective delivery of the high-quality service programs that are integral to the operations of the firm. He has implemented numerous programs throughout various departments essential to the firm’s operation—all while achieving financial improvement and increased productivity for the firm and its clients.

Przybylo’s background in vendor relations, information technology, and project management, among other skills developed during his career, have informed his success in the negotiation of contracts to acquire equipment, hardware, information technology, and other operations for the firm. He has directed projects resulting in the successful launch of business operations at several of Butzel’s office locations, including infrastructure improvements and technology and hardware installations, to ensure a smooth transition for all firm personnel.

Przybylo earned a Bachelor of Computer Information Technology and Security, Networking from Baker College. He is a member of the firm’s Privacy and Cybersecurity Compliance and Technology Committees

Burleigh joined Butzel in 2022 as a human resources manager. Prior to joining Butzel, she was an office manager for a local law firm.

Burleigh manages Butzel’s legal support teams; coordinates employee recognition programs, analyzes compensation and monitors the firm’s performance management program. She assists in organizational training and development efforts for legal support staff including skills assessments and program development in coordination with the technical training specialist. She develops, recommends, and implements HR policies and procedures; maintains a handbook on practices and procedures for the firm. She participates in developing department goals, objectives, and procedures and works with firm managers to coach, counsel and guide them on firm policies.

Burleigh also is responsible for the daily administration of the firm’s 401(k) benefit. She monitors and manages the firm’s PTO. She works in tandem with other departments, Butzel’s leadership and various committees on firm initiatives.  

Burleigh is a volunteer she has served as a volunteer with Lighthouse, which helps local families in need. She also served as co-director of the food pantry and community dinner at a local church.

Burleigh earned a degree in Business Administration and Management from Macomb Community College.