State Bar sections will hold informative sessions during Annual Meeting in GR

Several State Bar of Michigan (SBM) sections will hold educational sessions along with their annual meetings as part of the SBM’s Annual Meeting at DeVos Place in Grand Rapids.

The Labor and Employment Law Section will host its annual meeting and educational program from 2 to 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 22.

The section business meeting will take place from 2 to 2:30 p.m. The business meeting will be followed by a two-hour educational program, “Employment 2.0: How Technology is Changing the Way We Work and the Legal Implications.” The program will explore the ways technology is changing traditional employment and the resulting legal trends, such as the "gig" economy, remote work, social media as an extension of the workplace, and apps to track time worked. Panelists will include experienced practitioners and representatives from the U.S. Department of Labor and National Labor Relations Board who will review the latest agency guidance.  

After the program, the section will host a reception with cocktails and hors d'oeuvres from 4:30 to 6 p.m.

There is no cost to attend the business meeting, the educational program or the reception, but registration is requested. To register online, visit For more information, contact Sarah Prescott at or 248-679-8711.

SBM’s Agricultural Law Section’s meeting will also include an educational program, and will take place from 9-11:30 a.m., also on Sept. 22.

The section’s business meeting will take place from 9-9:30 a.m., when the section's officers and council will be elected for the coming year.

Following that, a two-hour educational program consisting of three different educational sessions will take place.  In the first session, "Recent Environmental Cases Affecting Agriculture," Michael Showalter of Schiff Hardin LLC in Chicago and New York will discuss recent environmental decisions affecting agriculture and how Supreme Court and appellate decisions affect how businesses are regulated. In the second session, "Planning for a Contamination Event: Cost Recovery," Steve Kluting of Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. in Grand Rapids will discuss cost recovery options facing a food/agribusiness company involved in a food safety incident. In the third session, “Got Beer? An Introduction to Michigan's Growing Hops and Malt Industries,” Brian Tennis of Michigan Hope Alliance and Erik May of Pilot Malt House will educate listeners on the growing hops and malt industries from the perspectives of their organizations. 

Again, there is no cost, but registration is requested. To register online, visit For more information, contact Jeff Haarer at or 517-284-5642.
The Arts, Communications, Entertainment and Sports (ACES) Section will host its own meeting and program from 2-4 p.m., also on Sept. 22.

The business meeting will take place from 2-3 p.m. and the educational program from 3-4 p.m. The educational program, which is open to the public, will consist of a panel discussion titled, “Perspectives on Music Licensing: A Special ArtPrize Presentation.” Joe Voss, practice leader of Clark Hill's Entertainment Industry Team and director of strategic partnerships of Creative Many Michigan in Grand Rapids, will moderate the discussion, which will consist of panelists Nicole Churchill, director of licensing and supervision at Assemble Sound in Detroit; Joe Bellanca, entertainment attorney at Hertz Schram in Bloomfield Hills; Kimberly Aldridge, manager of music licensing at AMI Entertainment Network in Grand Rapids; and Ralston Bowles, recording artist in Grand Rapids.

After the educational program ACES will co-host a reception with the SBM Intellectual Property Section and the SBM Information Technology Section. The event goes from 4:30-6:30 p.m. and will be held at Reserve Wine & Food, located conveniently close to the Annual Meeting, at 201 Monroe NW, Grand Rapids.

Registration is requested, but not required, for the no-cost meeting and reception. To register online, visit For more information, contact Anna Heinl at or 248-358-4400.