PROFESSIONALISM & CIVILITY
In 2020, the Michigan Supreme Court adopted 12 Principles of Professionalism to serve as guidance to help attorneys and judges remain mindful of the foundational principles of personal conduct that have always been a bedrock of the legal profession.
The 12 principles are at the heart of ongoing efforts to educate Michigan attorneys and judges about the importance of professionalism and civility. The start of the current movement is traced to the daylong Promoting Professionalism in the 21st Century Summit, chaired by former State Bar President Edward Pappas. On October 18, 2018, more than 80 judges and attorneys gathered at the Michigan Supreme Court Hall of Justice to address the need to reinforce the importance of professionalism in order to sustain an impartial and trustworthy justice system. Based on the summit's recommendations, the State Bar of Michigan formed a Professionalism and Civility Work Group in 2019. It 2021, the workgroup evolved into a full-fledged committee of the State Bar. The Special Committee on Professionalism and Civility continues to operate today and offers educational opportunities to law students and professionals.
The State Bar of Michigan’s Special Committee on Professionalism and Civility operates a speakers bureau to provide ongoing outreach and educational opportunities to State Bar sections, bar organizations, law firms, courts, law schools and other professional organizations.
The speakers bureau includes attorneys from throughout the state who have volunteered to speak when invited about the importance of the 12 Principles of Professionalism and offer practical advice for how to incorporate them into your work, office, and life.
To request a speaker for an upcoming event, please fill out this online form or click the button above.
ABOUT THE SPECIAL COMMITTEE
JURISDICTION: The Special Committee on Professionalism and Civility intends to be a resource to lawyers, judges, and those involved in the administration of justice to help promote the highest standards of personal conduct of lawyers and judges in the practice of law as articulated in Michigan Supreme Court Administrative Order No. 2020-23 - Professionalism Principles (”Professionalism Principles”) and any subsequent orders. The Special Committee will maintain an educational and promotional plan to (i) help ensure that the culture of the legal profession is consistent with the Professionalism Principles and (ii) secure commitments from those who participate in the legal profession to comply with the Professionalism Principles. The Committee will develop a consistent message to be used by the Committee, and will enlist others to help educate and work with all stakeholders in the administration of justice, including lawyers, judges, court staff, law firms, public and private employers of lawyers, law students, law schools, applicants to be admitted to the State Bar of Michigan, and others who participate in the legal process, including members of the public.
Michael S. Leib, Chair, Bloomfield Hills
John W. Allen, Kalamazoo
Michael J. Butler, Livonia
Sandra K. Carlson, Pontiac
Thomas W. Cranmer, Troy
Chad David Engelhardt, Ann Arbor
Kevin L. Francart, Lansing
John Stephen Gilliam, Bloomfield Hills
Caroline Brooks Giordano, Ann Arbor
Tina S. Gray, Williamston
Jennifer M. Grieco, Birmingham
Thomas H. Howlett, Bloomfield Hills
Hon. Annette M. Jurkiewicz-Berry, Detroit
Hon. Paul F. Kraus, Grand Haven
Timothy M. Lessing, West Bloomfield
Hon. Anica Letica, Detroit
Milton L. Mack, Jr., Lansing
Hon. Lisa M. Robinson Martin, Romulus
Michael Keith Mazur, Troy
Martha D. Moore, Lansing
Erin Elizabeth Safir, Birmingham
Ashley Noel Strawser, Detroit
Gregory G. Thiess, Williamsburg
Joan P. Vestrand, Lansing
Victor Richard Wandzel, Orchard Lake
Kimberley Ann Ward, Detroit
Hon. Brian K. Zahra, Lansing
Ryan Zemke, Clinton Township
Trent B. Collier, Southfield
Lisa L. Fadler, Detroit
Shannon Gonyou, New York
State Bar Liaison
Darin Alan Day, Lansing
Jennifer Hatter, Liaison Assistant, Lansing