Super Lawyers magazine has recognized 12 attorneys at Southfieldbased Jaffe, Raitt, Heuer, & Weiss PC as some of the finest up-and-coming attorneys in Michigan. Jaffe CEO Bill Sider made the announcement.

The following list of Jaffe attorneys were recognized as 2014 Michigan Rising Stars:

David Z. Adler Business Litigation.

Jeremy D. Bisdorf Intellectual Property.

Alexander E. Blum Business Litigation.

John P. Decker Business/Corporate.

Demrie L. Graham Real Estate.

Ethan Holtz Business Litigation.

Lee B. Kellert Mergers & Acquisitions.

Derek D. McLeod Business Litigation.

Jonathan C. Myers Bankruptcy.

Eric D. Novetsky Creditor Debtor Rights.

Salvatore J. Vitale General Litigation.

Sarah S. Weston Securities & Corporate Finance

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David A. Collins, an attorney with long experience practicing in Detroit, has been elected president of the Board of Directors of the American Bar Foundation, a position he will hold for two years.

The American Bar Foundation is the nation's leading research institute for the empirical study of law. Collins has served on the Foundation's board since 2005.

"The ABF is a crown jewel of the legal profession. For more than six decades the remarkable people here have conducted pioneering research on the impact of law on society," said Collins, who officially took office on September 1. "I am honored to have this opportunity to advance their important work."

Collins has practiced law both as an in-house lawyer for General Motors and its subsidiaries and then Of Counsel at the national law firm of Dykema Gossett.

At Dykema, he headed the firm's corporate compliance practice. At GM, he served in various capacities, including corporate secretary, general counsel of Saturn Corporation, and executive director of Corporate Compliance.

In addition to his service to the ABF, Collins has served the American Bar Association in numerous roles, including the Commission on Opportunities for Minorities in the Profession, the Coalition on Racial and Ethnic Justice, the Administration Committee of the ABA employee pension plan, the Standing Committee on Legal Aid and Indigent Defendants (SCLAID), as National Law Day Chair, and on the Standing Committee on Public Education.

Collins earned his BA from Amherst College (1967) and his law degree from Washington University (1972).

He earned an MA in history from Wayne State University and in 2014 he completed the requirements for his PhD in history, also at Wayne State.

He has published several articles on corporate compliance and ethics.

Before entering law school, Collins served as a Peace Corps volunteer in rural El Salvador.

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Andrew B. Wachler is pleased to announce that Dustin T. Wachler has joined the firm as an associate attorney at Wachler & Associates PC.

Dustin Wachler practices in all areas of health care law. He devotes a substantial portion of his practice to transactional, regulatory, and fraud & abuse matters, including counseling health care providers nationwide regarding compliance with the Stark law and Anti-Kickback Statute. Wachler also represents all types of health care providers and suppliers in defense of Medicare, Medicaid and third-party payor audits.

He graduated from Chicago-Kent College of Law. He also attended the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law. His past experience includes working for the Cook County Circuit Court in Chicago, IL, and for Wayne County Corporation Counsel in Detroit.

Wachler is admitted to practice in both the State of Michigan and New York State. He is a member of the State Bar of Michigan and the State Bar of New York's Health Law Section. He is also a member of the American Health Lawyers Association, the American Bar Association, and the Oakland County Bar Association.

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Honigman, Miller, Schwartz, and Cohn LLP Partner Donald J. Kunz has been elected to The Fellows of the American Bar Foundation.

The Fellows support the research work of the American Bar Foundation through their annual contributions and sponsor seminars and events of direct relevance to leaders of the legal profession.

Kunz, who is chair of Honigman's Corporate Department and leader of the firm's Insurance Transactions Practice Group, focuses his practice on corporate transactional matters and client counseling, with a particular emphasis on the representation of publicly traded companies. He conducts domestic and international acquisitions, divestitures and joint ventures, capital raising, commercial contracts, and various regulatory and compliance matters.

Kunz also has experience representing public and private companies and their owners, directors and officers on a range of day-to-day issues, including corporate governance issues and compensation planning for key executives.

He has been recognized as one of the top Corporate/M&A attorneys in Michigan by Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business since 2003, in The Best Lawyers in America since 2005 and in Michigan Super Lawyers since 2007.

He earned a law degree from the Harvard Law School and a B.S.E. in industrial and operations engineering from the University of Michigan.

In addition, Susan L. Welsh has joined the Corporate Department at Honigman as a partner. She is a member of the firm's Finance and Private Equity practice areas and is located in its Detroit office.

Welsh has experience representing private equity groups and other private and public companies in connection with financing transactions, including the structuring, negotiation and documentation of secured, unsecured, senior, mezzanine and subordinated debt transactions, acquisition financings and loan restructurings. Welsh is admitted to practice in Illinois and her admission to the State Bar of Michigan is pending.

She earned a law degre from the University of Illinois College of Law and a B.A. from the University of Michigan.

Welsh was previously a partner at Kirkland & Ellis LLP in Chicago.

Honigman is also pleased to announce that Alex L. Parrish was recently recognized by the Michigan Chronicle as one of the 50 Most Powerful African Americans in Southeastern Michigan.

Parrish is a partner in Honigman's Corporate Department. He focuses his practice on advising companies on a wide array of transactional matters, including capital formation, acquisitions, joint ventures, and the issuance, sale and regulation of securities, as well as general corporate matters.

Parrish's clients include Fortune 500 manufacturing and service companies, as well as startups, closely held and family-owned firms and a number of this country's leading minority and women-owned enterprises.

He has experience as counsel to financial institutions and investment banks in corporate, project and municipal finance transactions. He also advises investor groups in the purchases of business assets in bankruptcy or receivership and has assisted numerous financially distressed businesses in strategic dispositions of assets and restructuring of debt.

Parrish has been recognized by The Best Lawyers in America, Michigan Super Lawyers, DBusiness' Top Lawyers and by Crain's Detroit Business as one of Michigan's Outstanding Young Business Leaders.

He is active in the community and serves as the chair of the board of trustees for the Music Hall Center for the Performing Arts, a trustee for Henry Ford Health System Foundation, a board member for Detroit Institute of Arts and a trustee for the Detroit Metropolitan Bar Association Foundation.

Parrish earned a law degree from Harvard Law School and a B.A. from Howard University.

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Julie I. Fershtman, a shareholder with Foster, Swift, Collins, & Smith PC, was selected as the 2014 recipient of the State Bar of Michigan's Michael Franck Award. She was presented with the award during the Representative Assembly meeting at the State Bar Annual Meeting on September 18.

The Michael Franck Award is an annual award given to "an attorney who has made an outstanding contribution to the improvement of the profession."

Fershtman is a past president of the 43,000-member State Bar of Michigan. She practices in the areas of general insurance defense, insurance coverage, business litigation, premises liability, sporting, and recreational liability and equine law.

Additionally, she is a trustee of the Michigan State Bar Foundation, and a trustee of the Michigan Supreme Court Historical Society. She is also a Fellow of the American, Michigan, and Oakland County Bar Foundations.

A frequent author and speaker on legal issues, Fershtman has written more than 250 published articles, three books, and has lectured at seminars, conventions and conferences in 28 states on issues involving law, liability, risk management and insurance.

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Howard & Howard Attorneys PLLC was recognized among the "Top 100 Workplaces" for 2014 by the Detroit Free Press.

This is the 7th consecutive year for "Top Workplaces." The chosen companies will be featured in a special section in the Sunday, Nov. 16, issue. They will also be honored at the "Top Workplaces" Breakfast Ceremony on Wednesday, Nov. 12.

Founded in 1869, Howard & Howard is a full-service law firm with a national and international practice that provides legal services to businesses and business owners. The firm has offices in Michigan (Ann Arbor and Royal Oak); Illinois (Chicago and Peoria); and Las Vegas, Nevada.

In addition, Howard & Howard Attorneys PLLC is pleased to announce that Michael J. Minna has been selected to participate in the Detroit Regional Chamber's Leadership Detroit program, a 10-month transformational leadership program designed to challenge emerging and existing community leaders from Southeast Michigan to bring about positive change.

"I am extremely honored and excited to join Leadership Detroit. This is a great opportunity to expand my understanding of the issues facing the Detroit region and work with other individuals interested in making a difference in the community," said Michael Minna.

As part of Leadership Detroit's Class XXXVI, Minna will join 70 executives from across the region, representing a cross-section of the community, including business, organized labor, government, education, media, civic groups, health services and community organizations. Leadership Detroit provides opportunities for participants to foster problem-solving, while providing new views on key issues to lead the region to success.

Minna concentrates his practice in intellectual property law with an emphasis on preparing and prosecuting U.S. and foreign patent applications primarily in the mechanical arts.

He has prepared and prosecuted patent applications in numerous mechanical and electro-mechanical technologies including medical devices, automotive antenna systems, automotive seating, automotive steering and suspension components, automotive driveline components, automotive cooling and climate control systems, building window and door systems, exterior building and construction components, alternative pavement designs, and silicon manufacturing apparatuses.

In addition to preparing and prosecuting patent applications, Minna is experienced in counseling clients on patent matters such as freedom to operate, infringement and invalidity opinions.

Minna joined Howard & Howard in 2007 as an intern in its intellectual property law internship program. As an intern, he trained in the practice of patent law by preparing and prosecuting patent applications under close supervision of senior partners while attending law school in the evenings.

Minna received his law degree from the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law in 2010. He received his B.S. in Civil Engineering from Michigan State University in 2002.

Prior to joining Howard and Howard, Minna worked for Professional Engineering Associates as a staff engineer (2004-2007) and Orchard, Hiltz & McCliment Inc. as a project engineer (2002-2004).

In these capacities he was responsible for performing plan reviews, designing residential and commercial developments, and providing engineering consulting services to several South East Michigan municipalities.

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Cantor Colburn LLP is proud to announce that it has hired David Nafziger as an associate in its Troy office.

Nafziger focuses his practice on the preparation and prosecution of patents relating to complex electrical technologies. He has also assisted in the preparation of patentability opinions and non-infringement opinions for large corporate clients. Before becoming an attorney, he worked in the laser product development group of Raytheon, gaining technical experience in technologies including laser electronics/optics, analog power electronics and programmable software devices.

Nafziger has a B.S. degree in electrical engineering from Purdue University and a law degree from Case Western Reserve University School of Law. He is admitted to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and to the state bar of Ohio.

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Brooks Kushman is pleased to announce David Berry is the latest addition to the team. Berry brings 15 years of experience as a practicing intellectual property (IP) attorney and over 10 years of experience as a Professor of Law to the firm.

Berry's practice will focus on patent litigation and IP law in the business sector. He has represented clients of all sizes in a wide range of industries. He is admitted to practice in Michigan, Massachusetts, U.S. Supreme Court, Federal Circuit Court of Appeals, and the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

Prior to joining Brooks Kushman, Berry achieved tenure at Western Michigan University Cooley Law School, where he teaches Patent Law, Patent Litigation, and Licensing of Intellectual Property.

He also served as a director of WMU's graduate program in IP Law from 2002 to 2014. He assisted in developing the school's curriculum in IP law and special programs in IP law for graduate students and practitioners. Berry was also a partner at a large firm in Boston, where his practice focused on representing emerging technology companies and venture capital firms.

Berry's experience spans across a wide range of technologies and industries, such as separation science, semiconductor fabrication technology, embedded devices, biomechanics, financial services, e-commerce, and consumer products.

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The Varnum law firm was recently honored as the top Michigan-based Diversity Focused Company By Corp! Magazine, after initially ranking among 26 companies being recognized for their commitment to diversity. The award was announced Sept.10 at the 8th annual Michigan Salute to Diversity Awards, honoring businesses, organizations and business leaders who have displayed significant achievements in diversity within their organization or the community.

The award recognized Varnum's strong commitment to diversity and inclusion as evidenced by several unique programs and policies, including:

- Varnum appointed a dedicated Diversity and Inclusion attorney (2013 Corp! Magazine Diversity Leader award recipient, Elizabeth Joy Fossel) whose sole job is to enhance diversity and inclusion within the law firm as well as the broader community.

- The firm's internal Diversity and Inclusion Committee, which organizes programming to promote understanding of different cultures.

- The firm's participation in an annual minority law school clerkship program to increase the pipeline of diverse candidates for legal employment.

- The firm's engagement of college interns through a diversity intern program to further support the firm's pipeline growth.

- The firm's diversity and inclusion scholarship and fellowship programs.

Varnum is one of the first and possibly only Michigan law firm to establish a Diversity & Inclusion Advisory Council to provide outside input on recruiting and retention efforts and gain insight into diversity and inclusion issues.

The council, established in 2007, consists of community leaders of various ethnicities, races, backgrounds, orientations, religions, and embodies many areas beyond law, such as education, health care, hospitality, social services, and the arts.

Varnum had initially been selected for the Diversity Focused Company recognition along with several other top companies including the Kellogg Company, Primera Plastics Inc., and several other global companies.

"It's an honor to be recognized as the top Diversity Focused Company, and especially so to be recognized along with many esteemed companies whose commitment to diversity is well-known to us and to others," said Elizabeth Fossel who accepted the award on behalf of the firm. "While I am honored to lead the firm's Diversity and Inclusion efforts, none of them would be possible without the firm's strong commitment and the work of a lot of our attorneys and staff alike."

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Clark Hill continues to grow nationally with the addition of several associate and staff attorneys on Sept. 8. Many were a part of Clark Hill's 10 week 2013 Summer Associate Program where they worked on assignments and had client contact prior to their last year of law school.

Melissa M. Card has joined the Litigation Practice Group as an Associate in the Detroit office. Card graduated from the University of Minnesota Law School in 2014.

Daniel L. Eyer has joined the Education and Municipal Law Practice Group as an Associate in the Birmingham office. Eyer graduated from the Michigan State University College of Law.

Hugo A. Gallegos has joined the Corporate Practice Group as an Associate in the Detroit office. Hugo graduated from Loyola University Chicago School of Law, earning a certificate in tax law.

Steven J. Kustra has joined the Litigation Practice Group as an Associate in the Detroit office. Kustra earned both a Canadian and American law degree from the University of Detroit School of Law and the University of Windsor Faculty of Law, as part of their Canadian/American Dual J.D. program.

Brett E. Vasicek has joined the Real Estate Practice Group as an Associate in the Detroit office. Vasicek graduated from the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law.

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Thirteen attorneys in the Southfield office of Warner, Norcross, & Judd LLP have been rated 2015 Top Lawyers by DBusiness:

Michael G. Brady, commercial litigation.

Kurt M. Brauer, environmental law.

Sean H. Cook, closely held companies and family businesses law.

Homayune A. Ghaussi, commercial litigation.

William R. Jansen, commercial litigation and litigation regulatory enforcement.

Jay A. Kennedy, tax law.

Steven C. Kohl, environmental law.

Mary Jo Larson, employee benefits and Employee Retirement Income Security Act, or ERISA, law.

Thomas J. Manganello, commercial litigation.

Linda Paullin-Hebden, corporate law.

Alan T. Rogalski, health care law.

James E. Romzek, corporate law.

Lisa B. Zimmer, employee benefits and ERISA law.

In addition, Anissa C. Hudy, senior counsel with Warner Norcross & Judd LLP, has been selected as director of events for Women in Defense Michigan.

Hudy will serve a two-year term with the organization, which is a national security organization and an affiliate of the National Defense Industrial Association. The Women in Defense Michigan strengthens and influences the defense and national security industry by inspiring women, cultivating leadership and growing professional relationships.

Hudy concentrates her practice on real estate and commercial litigation, defense sector contracting and data solutions.

A graduate of Leadership Macomb, she is a member of the Association of Certified E-Discovery Specialists Education and Training Task Force and ARMA International and is a certificate holder in Essentials of Records Information Management, or CH-ERIM.

Published: Mon, Oct 06, 2014