New executive director brings wealth of experience to OCBA

By Tom Kirvan
Legal News
For Jennifer Roosenberg, her first day on the job at the Oakland County Bar Association coincided with the monthly board meeting of the OCBA, thereby offering a crash course in names and faces for the new executive director of the largest voluntary bar association in Michigan.

“It was a great opportunity to get to meet a number of key people in a hurry,” said Roosenberg of the September 6 board meeting, which came some three weeks after she was chosen to succeed Terri Gilbert as head of the OCBA. “It certainly helped me put some names to faces, and to understand some of the topics that are important to them.”

A graduate of Michigan State University, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in advertising, Roosenberg spent the past three years as executive director of the Northville Education Foundation (NEF), a nonprofit organization that “raises, manages and grants funds to support enrichment programs” in the school district. During her tenure with the NEF, Roosenberg “helped to increase awareness and fund-raising efforts, as well as develop new business relationships to boost corporate support.”

Before joining the NEF, Roosenberg served as executive director of the Ferndale Area Chamber of Commerce for five years. While there, she drew on her background in sales and marketing to implement “exciting new programming, increase funds raised, and build strong relationships with both the business community and government officials,” she indicated.

Her leadership was recognized by the Michigan Association of Chamber Professionals when it presented the Ferndale Chamber with the Michigan Small Chamber of the Year Award in 2013.

“The award recognized the FAC for strong collaboration with community partners, advocacy efforts for its members, fiscal responsibility, and innovative and effective programming,” Roosenberg related, noting “these are the pillars of a strong membership organization” that she hopes to reinforce at the OCBA.

During her time with the Ferndale Chamber, Roosenberg helped boost its ranks from 175 to 350 members, she indicated. Earlier in her career, Roosenberg practiced both residential and commercial real estate, and also headed sales and marketing for a residential builder.

A product of Northville Schools, Roosenberg lives in Commerce Township with her husband, Patrick, and her daughter, Ileana, a sixth-grader.

Gerald Gleeson II, president of the OCBA Board of Directors and an attorney with Miller Canfield, said Roosenberg was among “dozens of candidates” who applied for the position heading an eight-member staff.

“We interviewed four finalists and Jennifer stood out as exemplary,” Gleeson said, noting that she has enjoyed a “great deal of success in her career” and “will be an integral player in the next phase” of the OCBA.

“We are tremendously excited to have Jennifer join the Oakland County Bar Association as executive director, and she has a proven track record in successfully leading business and charitable organizations,” Gleeson added.