Legal People ...

Butzel Long attorney and shareholder Paul M. Mersino has been named to the Oakland County Executive’s Elite 40 Under 40 Class of 2015. The class includes young thought leaders and trailblazers who live or work in Oakland County and are under the age of 40.

The Elite 40 program is dedicated to helping these individuals make connections that can impact the future of Oakland County. Executive L. Brooks Patterson introduced the Elite 40 Under 40 Class during the 2015 State of the County Address on February 5.

Based in Butzel Long’s Detroit office, Mersino is a member of Butzel Long’s Commercial Litigation Practice Group. He concentrates his practice on complex commercial litigation, contract disputes, construction litigation, automotive supplier disputes, non-competition and trade secret disputes, and landlord-tenant disputes. He also represents and advises several startup companies, assisting them with their legal needs and matching them with potential venture capital funding and serves as a mentor to startup business incubators and accelerators in the region.

Mersino also handles appeals in the Michigan Court of Appeals, the Michigan Supreme Court, and federal courts.  He has been recognized as a Michigan Super Lawyers Rising Star in Business Litigation for 2012, 2013, and 2014.

Mersino is very active in the community. He currently is the vice president of the Detroit Metropolitan Bar Association’s Barrister’s Section and serves as an advisor to the Institute of Continuing Legal Education’s Litigation Advisory Board.  He is a member of the current class of Leadership Oakland and recently graduated from the Detroit Chapter of the American Inns of Court. He also is a member of the Detroit Historical Society.

Mersino is a 2008 graduate of Ave Maria School of Law. He earned his undergraduate degree in Business Administration from Northwood University (B.A., 2005).
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Brian D. Wassom’s book “Augmented Reality Law, Privacy and Ethics” has been published by Elsevier, an academic publishing company. Wassom is a partner in the Intellectual Property Litigation practice at Honigman, Miller, Schwartz, and Cohn LLP.

According to the publisher, the book is “the first in-depth study of augmented reality’s impact on law and society.” Augmented reality (AR) is the blending of digital information in the real world. A simple example of AR is the digital information overlaid on a television screen during a football game.

Wassom focuses his practice on intellectual property, privacy, and First Amendment-related litigation. He has experience in the areas of copyright, trademark, publicity rights, privacy, and other related litigation. Wassom leads Honigman’s Social, Mobile and Emerging Media Industry Group and is knowledgeable on issues regarding social media and other emerging forms of digital communication. He also is the author of a blog analyzing the laws governing social media.

Wassom is co-chair of the Social Media Committee for the Eastern Michigan Chapter of the Federal Bar Association and is secretary of the industry group AugmentedReality.Org.

He earned his law degree at Case Western Reserve University School of Law and a B.A. in Political Science and International Studies from Wayne State University.
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Sara B. Rubino has joined Southfield-based Jaffe, Raitt, Heuer, & Weiss PC as an associate in the firm’s Estate Planning and Probate Practice Group. Jaffe CEO Bill Sider made the announcement.

As a member of Jaffe’s Estate Planning and Probate Practice Group, Rubino will focus her practice on probate litigation, special needs planning and elder law.

She has experience litigating contested guardianships, conservatorships, estates and trusts. She has also served as general counsel for large companies in the 403(b) marketplace, and negotiated and drafted real estate, employment and non-complete contracts. Prior to joining Jaffe,

Rubino practiced at Estate Planning Legal Services PC and Barron, Rosenberg, Mayoras, & Mayoras PC.

Rubino is active both within the legal field and throughout the community, belonging to the National Association of Elder Law Attorneys and volunteering at the Birmingham Youth Assistance, Birmingham Optimists Club, Detroit Public Broadcasting System, Habitat for Humanity, and the Alzheimer’s Association – Detroit Chapter.

She earned her law degree in 2008 from University of Detroit-Mercy School of Law. She received her bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University in 2004.
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Clark Hill PLC is pleased to announce the following local attorneys have been elected to membership in the firm:

Jeffrey M. Gallant in the Construction Law Practice Group.

Jeremy S. Motz in the Education and Municipal Law Practice Group.

Gallant is a Member in Clark Hill’s Construction Law Practice Group. His clients include general contractors, subcontractors, suppliers, architects, engineers, surveyors, surety and insurance companies, municipalities, developers, and property owners.

By leveraging his civil engineering background and significant construction law experience, he is qualified to assist clients to manage risk and resolve disputes involved in vertical, horizontal, marine, industrial and heavy civil construction on federal, state, local, commercial and residential projects throughout the United States and abroad.

Motz is a Member in Clark Hill’s Education, Municipal and Real Estate Practice Groups. He principally focuses his practice in assisting public and private sector entities in a wide variety of transactional matters.

Motz regularly counsels public school districts and charter schools with respect to a variety of educational and operational issues, as well as compliance with the Revised School Code, the Freedom of Information Act, the Open Meetings Act, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act and other laws governing public bodies.
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The new year is bringing new leadership to the Detroit Metropolitan Bar Association Foundation which provides pro-bono legal and social services to underserved communities in metro Detroit.

The DMBA appointed Keith Altenburg of Comerica and Lisa DeMoss of Western Michigan University Cooley Law School as co-chairs. Steven Roach of Miller Canfield has accepted the post of secretary-treasurer. The appointments were approved during the DMBA’s Jan. 15 board of directors meeting.

The new officers were welcomed during the Foundation’s first Board of Trustees meeting for the year on Jan. 21. They have taken the reins from E. Christopher Johnson of Cooley and Barbara Bowman of Bodman. DeMoss previously served as secretary-treasurer.

All three of the new officers have extensive roots with the DMBA and its Foundation. Altenburg, the senior vice president and general counsel for Comerica Bank’s Michigan market, has served as a member of the DMBA Foundation’s board of trustees since 2008. Most recently, he co-chaired the 2014 Archer Award event, which raised more than $90,000 for the organization’s work.

DeMoss, who works as the director of Corporate Law and Finance and Insurance Law Graduate Programs at Cooley, is a past president of the DMBA’s board and has also served the Foundation’s board since 2011.

Roach, a senior principal at Miller Canfield, has been a member of the Foundation’s Board of Trustees since 2013 and was also an active member of the Archer event team.
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Thomas T. Moga has joined LeClairRyan as a shareholder on the firm’s Intellectual Property and Technology team.  He will be primarily resident in the national law firm’s Detroit office and will be secondarily resident in firm’s office in Washington, D.C.

A registered patent lawyer, Moga focuses his practice on intellectual property and international business transactions.  His experience includes the development of domestic and foreign patent portfolios, the acquisition of registrations for trademarks and copyrights, licensing, litigation, dispute resolution and mediation, and policy development.  He is an experienced patent prosecutor in the mechanical, chemical, biochemical and pharmaceutical arts and has been qualified and has testified as an expert witness in patent disputes.

Having lived and worked in China, Moga manages patent enforcement and anti-counterfeiting actions in Asia, including overseeing initial counterfeit product investigation, selecting and working with local investigators, selecting and working with local counsel, preparing administrative and judicial documents, and participating in raids.  A Fulbright Scholar, Moga is also the author of multi-volume treatise on patent practice and policy in Asia.

Moga is a graduate of St. Louis University School of Law, the University of Michigan (M.A., B.A.), and Madonna University (B.S.).  He is admitted to practice in Michigan, the District of Columbia, Illinois, Iowa, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, and before the U.S. Supreme Court.
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Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak, & Stewart PC  is pleased to announce that Donelle Buratto has been elected to the position of shareholder. Buratto practices in the firm’s Detroit Metro office.

Buratto is an experienced litigator who collaborates with her clients to effectively and efficiently defend against causes of action in state and federal courts and in administrative proceedings before government agencies. She focuses her employment litigation practice on a wide range of issues, including matters involving allegations of discrimination, harassment, and retaliation, whistleblower claims, and interference with rights related to leaves or disabilities.

She also regularly works with employers to provide practical legal advice and solutions regarding areas including individual employee issues, initiatives with widespread employee impact such as reductions in force, and to draft or revise policies. In addition to her employment litigation and counseling practices, Buratto has an active workplace safety and health practice in which she partners with employers in all phases of safety enforcement and inspection or incident response.

Buratto has been named a Michigan Super Lawyers Rising Star for a number of years and is a graduate of Leadership Oakland.  Buratto earned her law degree from the University of Michigan Law School.
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McKeen & Associates  announced the addition of attorney Norman H. Rosen as Of Counsel.

Rosen has specialized in medical malpractice cases for more than 40 years.  His expertise also includes birth trauma and wrongful death.  During his career, he has obtained recoveries for his clients in excess of $200 million.  Prior to joining McKeen & Associates, Rosen was a member of Erlich, Rosen, Bartnick, & Cook PC in Southfield.  

Rosen, who sits as a mediator in both Wayne and Oakland counties, is a former co-chairman for the Medical Malpractice Committee of the Michigan Association for Justice, a position he has held for seven years.  He also is a past president of the Metropolitan Detroit Trial Lawyers Association.

Rosen received his law degree from the Michigan State University College of Law in 1971.  He also earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from Wayne State University.
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Maddin, Hauser, Roth, & Heller PC, a Southfield-based law firm, announced the promotion of Karen Libertiny Ludden to shareholder.  The announcement was made by the firm’s President and CEO, Steven D. Sallen.

Ludden sits as a commercial case evaluator in Oakland County Circuit Court and as a tort case evaluator in Wayne County Circuit Court. She also is available to sit as a facilitator in commercial liability cases where insurance coverage is at issue.

Ludden graduated from the University of Michigan with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1990. She graduated from the University of Michigan Law School and published in its Journal of International Law in 1993. 

Ludden is a member of the American Bar Association, Federal Bar Association, and Oakland County Bar Association. She is also a member of the Claims & Litigation Management Alliance and sits on the Executive Board for the Michigan Chapter of the Federalist Society.

Ludden is admitted to practice in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, U.S. District Courts for the Eastern and Western Districts of Michigan, Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, and all Michigan state courts.