Master Schedule
Bar Events Schedule
SSFI Schedule
Networking Events


Solo & Small Firm Institute cosponsored by the State Bar of Michigan and ICLE, in cooperation with the following:

General Practice—Solo & Small Firm SectionFounding Sponsor

Law Practice Management & Legal Administrators Section

Business Law Section

Practice Management Resource Center


Enter your mobile number:


FacebookVisit our Facebook page to keep up to date on SBM news

Program & Registration Form
Download Program PDF

Annual Meeting Events Schedule
Wednesday | Thursday | Friday
Wednesday, September 17, 2014
Time Event
Noon–1:00 p.m. Commissioner Committees Meetings & Lunch

1:30–3:30 p.m. Board of Commissioners Meeting

2:00–4:00 p.m. Michigan State Bar Foundation Members/Trustees Annual Business Meeting

3:00–7:00 p.m. Annual Meeting Registration Open

4:00–5:00 p.m. New Board of Commissioners Meeting

4:15–4:30 p.m. Fellows of the Michigan State Bar Foundation Annual Business Meeting

4:30–6:00 p.m. Fellows of the Michigan State Bar Foundation Annual Reception (by invitation)

6:30–9:00 p.m. Awards Banquet
Join us as we pay tribute to our members who have achieved the highest honors in areas of leadership, professional integrity, and community service. Additional registration required.
Thursday, September 18, 2014
Time Event
8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m. Registration & Vendor Showcase Open

8:00–9:30 a.m. Continental Breakfast

8:30–9:30 a.m. Agricultural Law Section Business Meeting
9:30 a.m.–Noon

Agricultural Law Section Program
2014 Farm Bill & Farm-to-Table Issues
The 2014 farm bill and the farm-to-table legal issue will be discussed by professionals from Michigan agriculture and food industry groups, as well as government and agricultural and food law attorneys.

9:00–10:00 a.m. Casemaker Training

9:00 a.m.–Noon Family Law Section Business Meeting & Program
Representing Unaccompanied Immigrant Minors
Discussing opportunities for Michigan attorneys to provide assistance for the urgent humanitarian situation of unaccompanied minors fleeing violence in their home countries.
Speaker: Veronica Thronson, Director, Immigration Law Clinic at MSU, East Lansing

9:00 a.m.–Noon Michigan Lawyers Alliance Business Meeting

9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m. Representative Assembly Business Meeting

9:30–10:00 a.m. Insurance & Indemnity Law Section Business Meeting
10:00–11:30 a.m. Insurance & Indemnity Law Section Program
Cyber Liability: Will Your Client—or Your Firm—be the Next Target?
Learn about the types of coverages to help your clients and firm manage cyber risk exposures.

10:00 a.m.–Noon Litigation Section Business Meeting

10:00 a.m.–Noon Michigan Indian Legal Services Business Meeting

11:30 a.m.–2:00 p.m. Real Property Law Section Council Meeting

Noon–2:00 p.m.
Brian D. Einhorn   Thomas C. Rombach
Brian D. Einhorn
  Thomas C. Rombach
Inaugural Luncheon
Share in the celebration with the swearing-in of the State Bar President Thomas C. Rombach and other State Bar officers.
Additional registration required.

1:00–2:00 p.m. Administrative & Regulatory Law Section Business Meeting
2:00–3:00 p.m. Administrative & Regulatory Law Section Program
Perspective of the Supreme Court from the Former Michigan Solicitor General
John J. Bursch will recount his recent experiences arguing several different high-profile cases before the U.S. and Michigan Supreme Courts.
Speaker: John J. Bursch, Warner Norcross & Judd, Grand Rapids

1:00–2:00 p.m. American Indian Law Section Business Meeting
2:00–4:00 p.m. American Indian Law Section Program
Michigan v. Bay Mills
A look at the key issues in the recent Supreme Court case, Michigan v. Bay Mills Indian Community.
Speakers: Riyaz Kanji, Kanji & Katzen PLLC, Ann Arbor
Kathryn Tierney, Bay Mills Indian Community, Brimley
Louis Reinwasser, State of Michigan, Environment Natural Res. & Agric. Div., Lansing

1:00–1:45 p.m. Appellate Practice Section Business Meeting
2:00–4:00 p.m. Appellate Practice Section Program
Preserving & Presenting the Record on Appeal
Speakers will discuss issues concerning the record on appeal, including use of video evidence, de bene esse deposition transcripts and videos, and how the Court of Appeals accesses and views electronic versus paper records.
Moderator: Nancy Vayda Dembinski, Landry, Mazzeo & Dembinski PC, Farmington Hills
Panelists: Judges from the Michigan Court of Appeals
Jerome W. Zimmer Jr., Chief Clerk, Michigan Court of Appeals, Lansing
Angela P. DiSessa, District Clerk, Michigan Court of Appeals, Troy
Beth A. Wittmann, Kitch Drutchas Wagner Valitutti & Sherbrook, Detroit

1:30–4:45 p.m. Environmental Law Section Program
5:00–6:00 p.m. Environmental Law Business Meeting

2:00–3:00 p.m. Casemaker Training

2:00–3:30 p.m. Attorney Discipline Board Panel Member Workshop
Appointed members of Attorney Discipline Board hearing panels will meet with ADB staff and learn about pretrial procedure, conducting hearings, important cases and court rules, and other updates.

2:00–4:00 p.m. Michigan Retired Judges Association Business Meeting

2:00–2:30 p.m. Labor & Employment Law Section Business Meeting
2:30–4:30 p.m. Labor & Employment Law Section Program
The New Culture of the Workplace—Protected Concerted Activity in the 21st Century
Exploring the 21st century workplace—what it looks like; the law associated with protected concerted activity, including picketing, free speech, and retaliation; and whether employers must rethink their traditional strategies for response.
Michelle P. Crockett, General Counsel, Education Achievement Authority, Detroit
Walter Kraft, Vice President, Communications, Eastern Michigan University, Ypsilanti
Thomas M. Good, National Labor Relations Board, Grand Rapids
Jeffrey J. Fraser, Miller Johnson, Grand Rapids
Fillipe S. Iorio, Kalniz, Iorio & Feldstein, Grand Rapids

2:00–5:00 p.m. Young Lawyers Section Business Meeting

2:30–3:00 p.m. Consumer Law Section Business Meeting
3:00–4:00 p.m. Consumer Law Section Program

4:30–6:00 p.m. Law Schools Reception
Michigan State University
Thomas M. Cooley
University of Detroit Mercy
University of Michigan
Wayne State University

6:30–8:30 p.m. Celebrating Diversity Reception
The reception will acknowledge the work accomplished over the year in support of achieving greater diversity and inclusion in the legal profession. This year's reception will again include entertainment by Soultivity, a Washtenaw County-based all-lawyer R&B band. Additional registration required. Additional registration required.
Friday, September 19, 2014
Time Event
8:00 a.m.–2:00 p.m. Registration & Vendor Showcase Open

8:00–9:30 a.m. Continental Breakfast

9:00–10:30 a.m. Equal Access Initiative of the Committee on Justice Initiatives
Best Practices for Language Access in Michigan Courts
The Michigan Supreme Court adopted language access court rules in September of 2013. All trial courts and communities in Michigan are actively working to implement the new rules. This program will review MCR 1.111, MCR 8.127, and the ABA Standards for Language Access in Courts. Interpreting demonstrations and best practice discussions are part of the program.

9:00–10:00 a.m. Children's Law Section Program
Reflections From the Supreme Court Bench
Justice Viviano will provide insight into current items of importance to the justices and his thoughts about his first year on the high court bench.
Speaker: Hon. David Viviano, Supreme Court Justice, Lansing
10:00–11:00 a.m. Children's Law Section Business Meeting

9:00–9:30 a.m. Master Lawyers Section Business Meeting
9:45–11:15 a.m. Master Lawyers Section Program
Planning Ahead: A Succession Road Map
This session will provide you with the information required to implement a succession plan and the tools to help you do it. The Practice Management Resource Center succession planning handbook provides tools so that you, your staff, your family, other attorneys, judges, and clients can have predictability and calm in the event of personal crisis.
Speaker: Diane Ebersole, State Bar of Michigan Practice Management Resource Center, Lansing

9:00–10:00 a.m. Criminal Law Section Business Meeting
10:00 a.m.–Noon Criminal Law Section Program
Drunk & Drugged Driving in Michigan
Under Michigan law, it is illegal to drive while intoxicated or impaired, which can be the result of using alcohol, illegal drugs, and even some prescribed medications. But what is intoxicated or impaired driving? Come hear the newest updates on drunk and drugged driving laws, learn the science behind breath and blood tests, and find out how to prosecute cases and how to challenge them.
Moderator: Opolla Brown, Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, Wayne County Prosecutor's Office, Detroit
Speakers: Kenneth Stecker, Traffic Safety Resource Prosecutor, Prosecuting Attorneys Association of Michigan, Lansing
Michael Nichols, The Nichols Law Firm, East Lansing

9:00–10:30 a.m. Military & Veterans' Law Section Business Meeting
10:45 a.m.–Noon Military & Veterans' Law Section Program
Military Family Law Training
Everything you need to know about handling family law matters involving military members.
Speakers: Lt. Col. John J. Wojcik, Michigan National Guard, Lansing
Thomas J. Hetchler, Law Office of Thomas Hetchler, Lansing

9:30–10:30 a.m. General Practice—Solo and Small Firm Section Business Meeting
10:30–11:30 a.m. General Practice—Solo and Small Firm Section Program
Presentation of Outstanding Achievement Award
Presentation of the Outstanding Achievement Award to former Oakland County Circuit Court Judge Edward Sosnick Edward Sosnick and William A. Roy for their tireless contributions to the legal profession and to the General Practice Section.

10:00–11:00 a.m. Casemaker Training

10:00 a.m.–Noon Judicial Section Business Meeting

11:00 a.m.–Noon Arts, Communications, Entertainment & Sports Section Business Meeting
1:00–4:00 p.m. Arts, Communications, Entertainment & Sports Section Program
Crowdfunding: The Next Frontier of Financing Start-Ups
The explosion of crowdfunding has allowed start-ups to fund everything from creative enterprises needing a small amount of capital to entertainment-based projects requiring millions of dollars. This panel will discuss legal issues related to crowdfunding including the use of websites such as Kickstarter and Indiegogo, peer-to-peer lending, and equity crowdfunding through the JOBS Act.
Moderator: Todd Redden, Legal Pathworks PLC, Bloomfield Hills

Noon–1:30 p.m. Criminal Law Section, Prisons & Corrections Section, and Criminal Issues Initiative Program
Sentencing & Justice Reinvestment in Michigan
Applying a Justice Reinvestment Approach to Improve Michigan's Sentencing System report outlines areas for policy development, including opportunities to improve the state's sentencing system to achieve more consistency and predictability in sentencing outcomes, stabilize and lower costs for the state and counties, and direct resources to reduce recidivism and improve public safety.
Speaker: Carl Reynolds, Council of State Governments Justice Center, Austin, TX

Noon–2:00 p.m. Law Practice Management & Legal Administrators Section Business Meeting & Lunch
Q&A Open Forum
We will be holding a Q&A session discussing relevant issues to law practice management. It is an open-mic forum and guests are encouraged to answer each other's questions, provide ideas, and share information. Lunch is provided.
Moderator: Stacey L. Dinser-Hohl, Stacey L. Dinser Attorney at Law, Hamburg

Noon–2:00 p.m. 50-Year Golden Celebration Luncheon
Celebrate and honor fellow colleagues being recognized for 50 years of membership in the State Bar of Michigan. This is a great opportunity to network with your peers and mentors. Additional registration required.

1:30–3:30 p.m. Animal Law Section Business Meeting

2:00–3:00 p.m. Paralegal/Legal Assistant Section Business Meeting

2:00–4:00 p.m. Negligence Law Section Business Meeting & Program
Hot-Button Topics in the Judiciary
Speakers: Hon. Justice David Viviano, Michigan Supreme Court, Lansing
Hon. Amy Ronayne Krause, Michigan Court of Appeals, Lansing
Hon. Douglas Shapiro, Michigan Court of Appeals, Lansing
Brian D. Einhorn, Collins Einhorn Farrell PC, Southfield
Mark Granzotto, Mark Granzotto PC, Berkley
Carson Tucker, Lacey & Jones LLP, Birmingham

3:00–4:00 p.m. Aviation Law Section Business Meeting


follow us
Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on LinkedIn Follow Us on Twitter Follow the SBM Blog


©Copyright 2015

website links
Contact Us
Site Map
Website Privacy Statement PDF
Staff Links

SBM on the Mapcontact information
State Bar of Michigan
306 Townsend St
Lansing, MI 48933-2012
Phone: (517) 346-6300
Toll Free: (800) 968-1442
Fax: (517) 482-6248