News & Notices

Section Briefs November 2023


Michigan Bar Journal



The Animal Law Section continues to focus on improving the legal protection of animals through advocacy, education, and legislation relating to animal cruelty and wildlife protection laws. Members of this section advocate for animal rights and welfare while working to ensure animals are treated ethically and legally. Congratulations to new section chairperson Erin Klug and chair-elect Rebecca Wrock, and a heartfelt thank you to Kate Brindle for two great years as chair.


We welcome 2023-24 section chair Jennifer Grieco. The ADR Annual Conference was held virtually on Sept. 29-30, and our annual ADR Awards Banquet was held on Oct. 24 at St. John’s Resort in Plymouth. Award winners, annual conference presentations and materials, future events, past event materials, and the latest Michigan Dispute Resolution Journal can be found at


The Cannabis Law Section held its eighth annual conference from Sept. 28-30 at the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island. Considered by many to be our best conference yet, the content and presenters were terrific, and the location and weather proved spectacular. The 78 attendees raved about the events, which were both educational and social. Barton Morris was elected section chair and Michelle Donovan was promoted to vice-chair. The full section council list is coming soon to SBM Connect.


We welcome 2023-24 section chair Todd Schebor. Our annual meeting and program was held in Lansing on Oct. 4. The joint conference co-sponsored with the East and West Michigan chapters of the Air and Waste Management Association was held on Thursday, Nov. 2, at the Lansing Community College West Campus. Detailed event information and past event materials are available at


The Family Law Section will next meet on Thursday, Dec. 14 at 5 p.m. at the Crowne Plaza Lansing West. All sections members are welcome to join us for dinner and discussion about current family law topics including legislation, court rules, and other matters which directly impact our practices.


Labor and Employment Law Section networking events this year included “Golf with a Pro” at Wabeek Country Club in Bloomfield Township, where we sharpened our golf skills in a low-pressure environment. We have an exciting upcoming event at LaFontsee Art Galleries in Grand Rapids. Our virtual seminars covered legal issues such as Title IX and immigration law basics. Our upcoming annual mid-winter meeting at the Detroit Athletic Club in January is always a great opportunity to network and learn.


The LGBTQ+ Law Section will hold a virtual conference about ELCRA – 2023 Updates and Challenges on Friday, Nov. 17, from noon–1:30 pm. See the LGBTQ+ Law Section page on the SBM website for additional details and the Zoom link.


The Litigation Section is pleased to announce its officers for 2023-24: Joel Bryant (chair), Anthony Kochis (chair-elect), Andrew Stevens (secretary), and Chris Chesney (treasurer). The section is also pleased to announce the election of at-large members Richard Szymanski, Ashley W. Wahl, and Christopher J. Zdarsky. The officers and council are looking forward to an excellent year.


The Paralegal and Legal Assistant Section met at Weber’s Hotel and Restaurant in Ann Arbor on Sept. 30 for its annual meeting. Joseph McGill, State Bar of Michigan president-elect, addressed changes in the legal profession. The section council and committee met on Oct. 21 in Okemos to plan exciting events for members.


The Taxation Section elected new leaders at its annual meeting. Officers for the upcoming year are Brian Gallagher (chair), Rebecca Pugliesi (vice-chair), Ryan Peruski (treasurer), and Erick Hosner (secretary). The section also thanked outgoing chair Michael Monaghan for his exemplary leadership. The section council is already hard at work developing programming for the upcoming year including the Michigan Tax Conference, which will be held on May 23.


In October, the Young Lawyers Section hosted the National Trial Advocacy Competition in Detroit, welcoming 16 law schools from across the nation. It was a resounding success and a testament to our dedicated volunteers and judges. Gratitude to all involved. September saw the YLS transition to new leadership: Tanya Cripps-Serra (chair), Silvia Mansoor (chair-elect), Jake Eccleston (secretary), and Darnell Barton (treasurer). As we move forward, the section remains committed to excellence and professional growth.