New SBM Representative Assembly chair takes over

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Kathleen M. Allen of Grand Rapids has been sworn in as the chair of the State Bar of Michigan (SBM) Representative Assembly for 2013-14.

The investitute took place Sept. 19 during the SBM annual meeting in Lansing.

The 150-member Representative Assembly (RA) is the final policy-making body of the State Bar.

It was created in 1971 by the Michigan Supreme Court at the request of SBM’s Board of Commissioners in the hopes of increasing geographical representation and member participation in SBM policy.

Allen was first elected to the RA in 2006 and she represents Kent County.

Allen is also active with the Women Lawyers Association of Michigan, where she has served on the State Board from 1998-2008, and as president from 2006-07.

She has been involved with the Grand Rapids Bar Association, serving on its American Inns of Court Board of the Executive Committee, and as committee chair of its Liberty Bell Award.

Since 1997,  Allen has been a staff attorney at Legal Aid of Western Michigan in Grand Rapids.

She previously served as legal director of Legal Assistance Center in Grand Rapids and as an associate at the law offices of Charles F. Justinian in Grand Rapids.

Allen graduated from Michigan State University in 1986 and received her law degree from the Valparaiso School of Law in 1989.

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