Trott & Trott PC, a Farmington Hills-based law firm serving the mortgage banking industry, recently announced that Roy Sexton has joined the firm as vice president of Marketing and Strategic Planning. Trott President and Managing Partner David A. Trott made the announcement.

As vice president of Marketing and Strategic Planning, Sexton will be responsible for developing and refining marketing processes and execution plans. He will also create a comprehensive internal communications program, all of which will be integrated into the overall strategic business plan for the firm.

"Roy brings strategic communications and marketing expertise that will be invaluable to the growth and development of the firm," said Trott. "His creative insight, depth of knowledge and energy make him a terrific addition to the executive team."

Prior to joining Trott, Sexton spent 10 years in various planning and communications roles at Oakwood Healthcare System. Most recently, he served as the corporate director of strategic communications and planning, where he led a staff of 20 marketing professionals and developed the strategic direction for the $1 billion health care system.

Sexton earned his Bachelor's degree from Wabash College in 1995 and is a 1997 graduate of The Ohio State University, where he earned his Master's degree in Theatre. In 2007, Roy graduated with his MBA from the University of Michigan. He is a member of Leadership Detroit, Class XXX and is a governor-appointed member of the Michigan Council of Labor and Economic Growth. Roy is active on several nonprofit boards and committees, including First Step, Penny Seats Theatre Company and the Spotlight Players.

Additionally, Doreen L. Hoffman, supervising attorney of recovery services at Trott & Trott, presented as a featured speaker at the Michigan Association of Collection Agencies (MACA) Annual Conference on June 17. Trott President and Managing Partner David A. Trott made the announcement.

During the event, Doreen, who co-presented alongside Charity Olson, founder of the Olson Law Group and president-elect of MACA, shared her expertise regarding client best practices and educated the audience on recent legal updates in the recovery services industry.

Hoffman earned her law degree from the Detroit College of Law and her Bachelor's degree from Michigan State University. A published author and frequent speaker, she is currently the State of Michigan's compliance chair for The Association of Credit and Collection Professionals, a member of the National Association of Retail Collection Attorneys (NARCA) and a member of the State Bar of Michigan.

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Attorneys Jeremy R. Cnudde and Roxana Gale have joined Butzel Long. Cnudde is a senior attorney who concentrates his practice on corporate transactions and federal and state tax planning and tax appeal litigation. Gale is an associate attorney and focuses her practice on real estate.

Cnudde practices in Butzel Long's Bloomfield Hills and Detroit offices. He represents middle-market, entrepreneurial businesses with diverse backgrounds, including those in the manufacturing, aerospace and defense, distribution, retail grocery, and agricultural industries.

He assists with mergers and acquisitions, reorganizations, and shareholder disputes, business succession planning, buy-sell agreements and drafting of supplier and representatives agreements. Cnudde also has represented companies on corporate finance and capital acquisition matters, including private equity investments, recapitalizations, bank financing, and private placement issuance.

Cnudde has experience with federal, state, and local tax planning, Michigan property tax appeals, and nonprofit/tax-exempt formation and governance matters. Over the last decade he has developed a specialty with Michigan state tax planning and appeals, including representing numerous commercial and industrial property owners through successful Michigan property tax appeals. Cnudde has authored several articles and served as a seminar lecturer on various tax planning and tax appeal issues.

Cnudde is a graduate of Michigan State University - Detroit College of Law, with a concentration and Certification in Taxation Law. Cnudde earned his Bachelor of Arts in Accounting from the Michigan State University's Eli Broad School of Business (1999). He received certification from the National Institute of Trial Advocacy (NITA) in 2006.

Prior to joining Butzel Long, Cnudde worked for the Revenue Division of the Michigan Attorney General's Office and represented the State of Michigan in state tax litigation. He also worked for PricewaterhouseCoopers's state and local tax practice.

Cnudde is a member of the Detroit chapter of the Association of Corporate Growth (ACG), the Detroit Regional Chamber of Commerce, and the Detroit Economic Club. He is a member of the State Bar of Michigan's Corporate, Taxation, and Real Estate sections and is a member of the American Bar Association Taxation Section. Cnudde serves on the State Bar's Unincorporated Enterprises Committee. He is a Board of Directors member and secretary for the Marinelife Aquarium Society of Michigan and a board of directors member for the Lakeshore Bar Association.

Gale is based in Butzel Long's Bloomfield Hills office. She is a graduate of the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law and Oakland University (B.A.).

Prior to joining Butzel Long, Gale worked as an assistant prosecuting attorney at the Oakland County Prosecutor's Office, where she prosecuted criminal cases in district court and tried jury and bench trials. She also was an intern at the Wayne County Prosecutor's Office, where she conducted legal research and assisted prosecutors during the pre-trial and trial stages.

Gale is admitted to practice in Michigan State Courts and the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. She is a member of the State Bar of Michigan, the Federal Bar Association and the American Bar Association.

Also, Butzel Long attorney and shareholder Thomas L. Shaevsky was a featured speaker recently during an Employee Benefits Workshop presented by the Michigan Association of Certified Public Accountants (MACPA). Shaevsky's presentation focused on the Internal Revenue Service and the U.S. Department of Labor correction programs for retirement plan & health plan errors.

Based in Butzel Long's Bloomfield Hills office, Shaevsky practices in the area of employee benefits. He advises large multinational corporations, physicians and other professional practices, hospitals and other nonprofit employers, as well as individuals, on compliance and planning issues pertaining to a wide range of retirement, pension, and welfare plan issues.

Shaevsky is the chair of the Employee Benefits Committee of the State Bar of Michigan. He has been selected by his peers for inclusion in "The Best Lawyers in America" (Employee Benefits Law). He is the immediate past chair of the Employee Benefits Committee of the Oakland County Bar Association and a past member of the Board of Directors of the Michigan Employee Benefits Conference. He previously served as an appointed member of the West Bloomfield Township Wetland Review Board.

Shaevsky also is a member of the American Bar Association (taxation section).

Prior to joining Butzel Long, Shaevsky was engaged as in-house counsel to Comerica Bank's Institutional Trust Department, counseling and advising business owners and managers with regard to retirement plan issues and general compliance issues.

Shaevsky has counseled charter schools on a variety of educational and governmental compliance issues. He also has experience counseling public entities on Open Meetings Act, Freedom of Information Act, and conflict of interest issues.

Shaevsky is a graduate of the University of Michigan Law School (1992), and the University of Michigan (B.A., 1989). Immediately following law school graduation, Shaevsky served as a law clerk to the U.S. District Court Judge John Feikens, Eastern District of Michigan.

Additionally, Daniel B. Tukel, attorney, shareholder and chair of Butzel Long law firm's Labor and Employment Law Department, is a winner of the Thomas M. Cooley Law Review 2011 Distinguished Supreme Court Brief Award that was presented during an awards banquet on June 22 in Lansing.

The Distinguished Brief Award is given in recognition of the most scholarly briefs filed before the Michigan Supreme Court as determined by a panel of jurists.

The brief for which Tukel was honored, addressed the issue of the proper venue for a discrimination claim alleging violation of the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act.

"I am honored to be a recipient of this prestigious award," said Tukel. "A well-written legal brief is always an extremely important component of litigation, both at the appellate and the trial court level, so receiving this award is particularly meaningful."

Based in Butzel Long's Detroit office, Tukel's practice is devoted to representing both public and private employers in state and federal discrimination and wrongful discharge litigation, as well as traditional labor matters such as collective bargaining and union organizational drives. He regularly counsels employers in all aspects of labor and employment law, in statutory compliance and in creating, implementing and administering employee handbooks and other personnel policies and practices.

Tukel has represented employers before state and federal trial and appellate courts, and various administrative agencies including: the National Labor Relations Board; National Mediation Board; Equal Employment Opportunity Commission; Occupational Safety and Health Administration; Michigan Department of Civil Rights; Michigan Department of Labor; Michigan Employment Relations Commission; and Michigan Employment Security Commission.

Tukel has published a number of scholarly articles on various aspects of labor and employment law. Moreover, Tukel has lectured on a wide range of employment and labor issues, has served on the faculty of the Institute of Continuing Legal Education, and has served as a private arbitrator and private facilitator in employment matters.

Tukel is a Fellow of the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers. He is listed in Chambers USA for Labor and Employment Law, in "Best Lawyers in America" for Labor and Employment Law, and is named a "Michigan Super Lawyer" for employment litigation defense. Tukel is a member of the National Association of College and University Attorneys, the American Employment Law Council, the Michigan Council of School Attorneys, the American Bar Association (Labor and Employment, and Litigation sections), the State Bar of Michigan (Labor and Employment, and Litigation sections), the Detroit Metropolitan Bar Association, the Oakland County Bar Association, and is a Fellow of the State Bar of Michigan Foundation.

Tukel is a graduate of the University of Michigan Law School (1982), and also earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan (A.B., 1979).

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Honigman, Miller, Schwartz, and Cohn LLP is pleased to announce that Charles W. Duncan Jr. has joined Honigman as an Attorney in the firm's Litigation Department as part of its Intellectual Property (IP) practice. He will be located in Honigman's Oakland County office.

Duncan will concentrate his practice on intellectual property litigation, including patents, trademarks, trade secrets, copyrights and contracts. He will also counsel clients in a variety of technical areas, including computer hardware and software and telecommunications. Prior to practicing law, Duncan served as a digital hardware engineer for National Instruments in Austin, Texas. He joins Honigman from the law firm of Kirkland & Ellis in Chicago.

He earned his law degree from the University of Michigan Law School and a B.S.E. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Michigan.

Duncan is admitted to the Illinois State Bar and his admission to the State Bar of Michigan is pending.

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Gov. Rick Snyder recently announced the appointments of Mark Boonstra, Diana D'Agostini and Rick Simonson to the Michigan Judges Retirement Board.

The board provides oversight of the Judges Retirement System Defined Benefit Plan.

Boonstra is a senior principal with Miller, Canfield, Paddock, and Stone PLC in the firm's Ann Arbor office. He is a practicing attorney with 27 years of legal experience covering all aspects of general business and commercial litigation and counseling. He earned a bachelor's degree from Michigan State University, and a master's degree in applied economics and law degree from the University of Michigan. He represents the general public and replaces Chris Swope.

D'Agostini was elected judge in the 48th District Court in Oakland County in 2000 and was re-elected in 2006. She previously served from 1991 to 2000 as an Oakland County assistant prosecutor. She earned a bachelor's degree from Wayne State University, a law degree from the Detroit College of Law and also studied at Florida State University and Oxford University. She will represent active judges and fills a vacancy.

Simonson is retired after a career in public service where he served as chief of staff for two different Michigan state Senators, director of state and federal affairs for Oakland County Schools and as deputy superintendent and CFO for Oakland Schools. Simonson previously served as an education and political consultant and served on the Michigan Judicial Tenure Commission. He is a graduate of Albion College where he double majored in political science and economics. He represents the general public and replaces Francis Spaniola.

Simonson and Boonstra will serve four-year terms, expiring March 31, 2015. D'Agostini will serve for the balance of a four-year term expiring March 31, 2013. Appointments are subject to the advice and consent of the Senate.

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Gov. Rick Snyder recently announced appointments to the Michigan Appellate Defender Commission.

The commission is responsible for providing a system of indigent appellate defense services and developing standards.

Thomas W. Cranmer and Thomas G. McNeil are appointed and Judith Gracey and John Nussbaumer are reappointed.

Cranmer is a principal and managing director of Miller, Canfield, Paddock, and Stone, a law firm practicing both criminal and civil litigation. He is a former assistant prosecuting attorney in Oakland County and a former assistant U.S. attorney. Cranmer is also a past president of the State Bar of Michigan, as well as a past president of the Oakland County Bar Foundation. He is listed in "The Best Lawyers in America" and is a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers. Cranmer earned a bachelor's degree from the University of Michigan and a law degree from Ohio Northern University. He will represent the Michigan Supreme Court and replaces Donald Martin.

McNeil is the practice department manager of commercial litigation and alternate dispute resolution at the Detroit offices of Dickinson Wright PLLC. He has represented defendants in more than 30 securities and ERISA class actions. McNeil earned a bachelor's degree from the University of Notre Dame and a law degree from the University of Virginia. He will represent the Michigan Supreme Court and replaces Ernest Essad.

Gracey has spent more than 19 years as a sole practitioner in Michigan. She served part-time as a magistrate for the 48th District Court for more than eight years. Gracey is a former assistant city attorney for the City of Flint and adjunct professor at Oakland University and Madonna University. Gracey earned a bachelor's degree from Brown University and a law degree from the University of Cincinnati. She will represent the State Bar of Michigan.

Nussbaumer is a professor and associate dean of the Auburn Hills Campus of Thomas M. Cooley Law School. Before joining Cooley, he served as law clerk to former Michigan Supreme Court Justice Mary S. Coleman. Nussbaumer currently serves as a Michigan Supreme Court appointee to the Michigan Criminal Procedural Rules Committee. He earned a bachelor's degree from Denison University and a law degree from the University of Michigan. He will represent the State Bar of Michigan.

Appointees will serve four-year terms expiring May 24, 2015, and are subject to the advice and consent of the Senate.

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"Real Property Taxes in Michigan," a book edited by Cooley Law School Professor Gina Torielli, has won an ACLEA Award of Outstanding Achievement.

The Association for Continuing Legal Education (ACLEA) is an association of the providers of continuing legal education. It was established in 1964 and includes members from the United States and Canada, as well as the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Africa, and Mexico.

The book helps practitioners understand the law and learn the best strategies for handling any real property tax matter.

The Institute for Continuing Legal Education, which offers the book, states the volume can help readers:

* Know what documents and evidence are persuasive to the local assessor and board of review.

* Pick the best strategies for appealing an assessment to the State Tax Commission or Michigan Tax Tribunal.

* Understand what triggers uncapping and how to avoid it.

* Structure transactions to avoid or minimize real estate transfer tax.

* Know how a tax lien can impact your clients' interest in real property and how to protect their interests.

* Prepare the best defenses to a tax lien foreclosure, whether at the administrative or at the judicial proceeding.

Several chapters of the book were authored by tax practitioners who are either Cooley Law School alumni or adjuncts with Cooley's LL.M. program. The book can be purchased from the Institute at

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Potestivo & Associates PC is pleased to announce the hiring of the new director of Information Technology, Christopher J. Brennan. Brian A. Potestivo, president and founder, made the announcement. Brennan will be taking an active role in design and support of the law firm's information technology systems.

Prior to joining Potestivo & Associates PC, Brennan served as the Active Directory architect and Windows Server engineer at a prominent technology solutions company. He was responsible for development of design & integration solutions, including network infrastructure architectures, directory services design and network topology design. He was also very involved with the network security solutions and managed a web development department where he designed and supported a complete in-house web design & development infrastructure.

Brennan earned multiple certifications in Microsoft Active Directory 2008, Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2, Microsoft Network Infrastructures, Cisco Small Business Specialist, Microsoft Windows 7 Enterprise Desktop, Pursuing Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA).

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James W. Burdick of Bloomfield Hills-based Burdick Law PC has been named by "Michigan Super Lawyers" magazine as one of the top attorneys in Michigan for 2011. This is the fifth consecutive year Burdick has been named a "Top Lawyer" in Michigan.

Burdick was selected for his work in criminal defense and health care law. He specializes in complex criminal litigation and is regarded as an expert in trials, forfeiture litigation and in representing health care professionals in criminal cases and licensing, disciplinary and other administrative matters.

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Matthew K. Casey, a partner with the law firm of Warner Norcross & Judd LLP, has been appointed to the St. John-Providence Health System Foundation Board.

Casey, who concentrates his practice in commercial and bank-related litigation, will serve a three-year term on the board, which is the development arm for the system. St. John Providence is comprised of seven hospitals and more than 125 medical facilities in Southeast Michigan. Donations to the Foundation support new health care facilities, medical technology, community programs and other initiatives.

Casey practices in the Southfield and Sterling Heights offices of Warner Norcross.

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Sommers Schwartz is pleased to announce that David J. Winter has been elected to a 3 year term on the Board of Directors for the Detroit Metropolitan Bar Association and was re-elected to a 3 year term on the Board of Trustees for the Plymouth Canton Schools Educational Excellence Foundation where he serves on the marketing and strategic planning committees.

Winter is a senior shareholder with the firm. His practice covers a broad spectrum of medical malpractice, personal injury and business related issues. He has experience in the role of advocate, litigator, arbitrator and mediator in solving legal disputes to the greatest possible advantage for his clients.

Published: Mon, Jun 27, 2011