Following a dream

WMU-Cooley Law student Ron MacKool, who enjoys soaring in the skies as a pilot, sold a thriving business in order to fund his law school studies.

Photo courtesy of Ron MacKool

Law student aims to become a prosecutor

By Sheila Pursglove
Legal News

In his early 20s, Ron MacKool appealed a traffic court’s decision and won, while representing himself. 

“I enjoyed examining the officer involved, and felt I had a knack for it,” he says.  “My mom always told me I would make a good lawyer— I hope to prove her correct.”

MacKool, who sold a successful business in order to put himself through WMU-Cooley Law School, is well on his way to achieving his goal of becoming a prosecuting attorney. “I believe in serving my community – I’ve already done so for many years in law enforcement as a volunteer, and I can’t see myself doing anything else,” he says. “I believe a prosecutor has a huge role and responsibility.

“My desire is to be a consistent, but fair prosecutor – recognizing the interest in serving the public balanced with a need to get those convicted of crimes into diversionary programs, when appropriate, so that they can go on to also give back to the community.”

This summer he will do an internship in Genesee County with the Prosecuting Attorneys Association of Michigan.   

“Although I haven’t been assigned to a division yet, I’ve requested to work with child neglect and delinquency cases,” he says. “Not to be overly cliché, but children are the future so we’d best give them all the help we can to keep them from falling off track.”

The son of a law enforcement officer, MacKool was naturally drawn to the law; and also enjoyed watching trials from a young age.

“I always saw my father executing his responsibility in a very fair and just way for the community,” he says. “I remember kids from high school commenting to me that he treated them very fairly and considerately when they were pulled over or had interactions with him.”

To fund his law school studies, MacKool sold his liquidation company that held local estate sales and online auctions.

“When I started the business, it was just me – when I sold it, I had 15 to 20 full-time employees,” he says.

The gamble has paid off. MacKool, who has 3.90 GPA, is enjoying his studies at WMU-Cooley Law and has nothing but praise for the professors and deans.

“I honestly can say the professors I’ve met at Cooley are some of the highest quality instructors I’ve ever known,” he says. “Not only were many masters at their trade, they also are highly competent teachers who deeply care about their student’s success.”

A native of Roseville, MacKool – who also has a master’s degree in computer information and was a software developer for many years – now makes his home in Shelby Charter Township, and enjoys living in southeast Michigan.

“There’s a lot to do in this area,” he says. “We have great metro parks, lots of small airports, and great places to eat. I’m optimistic about the resurgence of Detroit.”

A pilot and a volunteer reserve deputy for the Macomb County’s Sheriff’s office, MacKool enjoys keeping physically fit and competing in races. He also likes to cook gourmet food, play hockey, and has coached his son’s baseball team. He concedes that his law school studies have been challenging for his wife, 10-year-old son and 7-year-old daughter.   

“So much of my time is directed at studying that I’m able to spend less time playing with my kids,” he says. “I look forward to getting into practice and being able to get some of that time back.

“However, I hope they’re able to see, from watching me go through law school, that it’s never too late to follow your dreams – it’s never too late to make a positive change.”

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