Mark J. Bennett, senior counsel in the Troy office of the law firm of Miller Canfield, was named one of the Best Law Firm Writers by the Burton Awards.

Bennett, team leader of Miller Canfield's Climate Law practice, was chosen as one of the 35 best law firm writers of 2012 for his article, "New ASTM Standard May Serve as Safe Harbor for Emerging Building Energy Labeling, Transactional Disclosure, and Benchmarking Regulations," published in BNA's Environmental Due Diligence Guide, 3/17/11. (Co-authored by David J. Freeman of Paul Hastings LLP and Anthony J. Buonicore of Buonicore Partners LLC).

"I am honored to be among a distinguished group of lawyers dedicated to delivering analysis of complicated legal matters in a means which can be practically applied to solving problems in the business community," Bennett said.

At Miller Canfield, Bennett has combined his training in real estate and environmental law into his position as leader of the Climate Law team, managing a broad array of issues in this emerging area of law. His practice also includes a focus on advising clients in the acquisition and development of commercial real estate, as well as guiding companies in conducting environmental due diligence in real estate transactions. He earned his law degree from Wayne State University Law School and B.A. from Michigan State University.

Additionally, Miller Canfield announces that Matthew F. Leitman will serve as Litigation and Trial Group Deputy Group leader.

Leitman is a principal in the Troy office. His principal practice areas are complex commercial litigation, criminal defense, and appellate litigation. His experience includes trial practice before state and federal trial courts as well as numerous appeals before state and federal appellate courts. He has been involved in several high-profile trials and has argued several significant appeals that have led to important, precedent-setting rulings. He has authored several influential law review articles on matters of federal law and Michigan law.

Leitman earned his law degree from Harvard Law School and bachelor's degree from University of Michigan.

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In May, Timothy P. Flynn, a partner in the Clarkston-based firm, Karlstrom Cooney LLP, presented to lawyers at Avvocating 2012 in Seattle, WA on the subject of electronic marketing for practicing lawyers.

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Lawyer coach Elizabeth Jolliffe, owner of Your Benchmark Coach, received the Women Lawyers Association of Michigan's inaugural Regional Leadership Award at the State Annual Meeting on April 27.

Jolliffe was recognized for significant membership growth in the Wayne region while she has been membership chair, including increasing the number of judicial members, for her involvement in starting and continuing the Wayne region's annual end of summer garden party held at a judge's home, for establishing the Moms-in-Law lunch series in the Washtenaw and Wayne regions, and for promoting the regions by writing articles, taking photographs of speakers and members at events, and posting frequently to the WLAM LinkedIn group and the regions' Facebook pages so that WLAM has timely, high visibility.

She was also recognized for contributing her talents as a professional lawyer coach, without charge to WLAM, to host, moderate and speak at various events at WLAM regions throughout the state and at WLAM's annual State meetings.

Jolliffe is also the current president of the Detroit Metropolitan Bar Association.

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Southfield-based Collins, Einhorn, Farrell, & Ulanoff PC announced that attorney Patrick Crandell has joined the firm's Insurance Coverage Practice Group.

Crandell comes to Collins Einhorn from a mid-sized firm in Buffalo, NY, where he gained experience in insurance coverage and related litigation. He focused his practice on the defense of complex commercial coverage and corporate disputes in state and federal court. He also counseled insurance companies and drafted coverage opinions with respect to a broad variety of complex coverage issues.

Additionally, prior to beginning a private practice, he served as a legislative aide to Michigan Senator Gretchen Whitmer. His responsibilities included managing all policy issues related to the senator's role on Finance and Judiciary Committees, conducting bill analysis, recommending and managing legislative initiatives and responding to constituent inquires.

Crandell graduated from both Thomas M. Cooley Law School and Western Michigan University.

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Attorney Joumana Kayrouz, president and owner of the Law Offices of Joumana Kayrouz PLLC, has been appointed president of the Board of Directors for the Miss Lebanon Emigrants USA - 2012 by the Lebanese Ministry of Tourism.

As president of the organization in the United States, Kayrouz will be the official representative of the Lebanese Ministry of Tourism in the United States and in everything related to Lebanese events. She is honored to bring her talents, resources and connections to her newly named position.

Kayrouz, said: "I am grateful for this appointment to the Board of Directors for the Miss Lebanon Emigrants USA-2012, and greatly look forward to working with the other board members to ensure a successful event. It is especially gratifying to work with these young women as they seek positive ways in which to express themselves through both their beauty and their career aspirations. I am extremely excited to be involved with the Lebanese Ministry of Tourism and the ongoing efforts of growing the pageant."

Miss Lebanon Emigrants - USA 2012 was held on Thursday, May 24, at Greenfield Manor in Dearborn.

Miss Lebanon Emigrants beauty pageants are being held worldwide in countries known for their large emigrant Lebanese populations. The winner will compete with other young women from 35 countries on August 11, 2012 at Castle Assouf in Dhour Shweir, Lebanon. The winner among American contestants will travel to Lebanon in order to compete for the world title.

This event will be held by the committee of Miss Lebanon Emigrants in collaboration with the Lebanese Ministry of Tourism, the Lebanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the city of Dhour Shweir, World Lebanese Cultural Union, the Lebanese Embassy to United States of America and MTV, Lebanon.

Kayrouz owns and directs a personal injury law firm. Since earning her law degree in 1997, she has recovered tens of millions of dollars for clients.

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Samuel A. Schiffer has joined Southfield-based Jaffe, Raitt, Heuer, & Weiss PC as an associate in the firm's real estate group. Jaffe CEO William Sider made the announcement.

Most recently, Schiffer served as a legal assistant for Carole E. Basri, Esq., an adjunct professor at Fordham University Law School and as an intern in the legal department of CBRE, Inc., a global commercial real estate services firm, both located in New York City.

Schiffer received his law degree from The Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law in New York City. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in finance with honors from Michigan State University Eli Broad College of Business.

Schiffer has been admitted into both the state bars of New York and New Jersey.

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Howard & Howard Attorneys PLLC is pleased to announce that Paul T. Engel has joined the firm. He will practice out of the firm's Royal Oak Office.

Engel concentrates his practice in intellectual property law with a focus on patent preparation/prosecution and opinion work, primarily in the chemical arts. Engel has legal and technical experience with a diverse array of material technologies, including polyurethanes, silicones, elastomers, thermoplastics, and other polymeric materials. He also has legal and technical experience with various chemical process technologies, including organic synthesis, compounding, extrusion, and injection molding.

Prior to joining Howard & Howard, Engel gained more than 10 years of experience in industry. He worked as a project leader at National Starch & Chemical where he provided technical solutions and moved new adhesive technologies to market. He also worked at Sika Corporation for several years holding numerous positions such as, chemist, research scientist, and production manager, developing and manufacturing acoustic and structural materials for automotive, industrial, building, and construction markets.

Engel received a B.S. in Chemistry from Michigan State University in 1996 and a M.S. in Chemistry (MSEC Program) from the University of Detroit Mercy in 2000. Engel joined Howard & Howard in 2008 as a full-time intern in its intellectual property law internship program while attending law school in the evenings and in 2012 received his law degree from Thomas M. Cooley Law School with a concentration in intellectual property. He is licensed to practice in the State of Michigan.

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Brian D. Wassom, a partner in the Honigman, Miller, Schwartz, and Cohn LLP Litigation Department, has been named co-chair of the Social Media Committee for the Federal Bar Association (FBA), Eastern District of Michigan Chapter. The committee's mission is (1) to present programming to federal practitioners and judicial officers on the social media issues that arise in the litigation process (including discovery) and during trial, and (2) to expand the mission of this FBA chapter through social media communication, networking and marketing.

Wassom's legal practice focuses on First Amendment and Intellectual Property issues, including copyright, trademark, publicity rights and entertainment, which involve free-speech protections and the boundaries of legally sanctioned monopolies over creative expression. He also assists media companies and journalists in exercising their freedom of the press and advises religious organizations regarding their First Amendment rights.

Wassom authors the legal blog, which addresses the law of social and emerging media. "Augmented Legality" is a regular feature in his blog, which is one of the first publications dedicated to analyzing the legal principles that will govern augmented reality technology.

Wassom has made presentations to companies, attorneys and associations across the country on social media legal issues and has assisted several clients with drafting social media policies and litigating social media-related issues.

He earned his law degree at Case Western Reserve earned a B.A. in Political Science and International Studies from Wayne State University.

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Dykema recently announced that it has been named Detroit's top corporate law firm by Corporate Board Member magazine. This is the second consecutive year--and third time since 2009--that Dykema has earned this honor. The first place ranking emerges from Corporate Board Member's 12th annual Legal Industry Research Study, a ranking of corporate law firms in 25 major U.S. markets by corporate directors and general counsel at the largest publicly traded companies.

Corporate board members asked respondents in each major market to select the five local law firms that they would most likely select to assist their companies on a broad range of corporate legal issues. The top firm in each market was determined on the basis of votes received.

"While it's a great honor to be named Detroit's top corporate law firm by Corporate Board Member magazine, it's even more gratifying that Dykema has earned this accolade two years in a row," said Peter M. Kellett, Dykema's chairman and chief executive officer. "This speaks to two qualities: how those whom we serve in a corporate capacity value our contributions, and how those senior company executives rate our counsel as consistently excellent."

Brendan Cahill, who leads Dykema's Corporate Finance Practice Group, added, "The respondents to this annual survey, corporate directors and general counsel at the largest companies in and around Detroit, work with many fine law firms. To be chosen by this audience as the top corporate law firm in Detroit is a singular accomplishment of which we're most proud."

A complete listing of the results from this industry survey is published in the second quarter issue of Corporate Board Member magazine.

Published: Mon, May 28, 2012