The State Bar of Michigan Representative Assembly will present its Michael Franck and Unsung Hero awards to two outstanding members of the legal community on Thursday, Sept. 18 at DeVos Place in Grand Rapids. The presentation will take place at 9:30 a.m. during the assembly's general session, which is being held in conjunction with the SBM Annual Meeting.
Michael Franck Award
Julie I. Fershtman is a brave and bold leader. She paves the way in her field of equine law, traveling the country trying cases, writing books and a blog, and speaking to attorneys as an equine expert. She has long been a leader at the State Bar, heading up the Young Lawyers Section, Representative Assembly, and serving as president of the Board of Commissioners in 2011. During her SBM presidency, she spearheaded the creation of the Bar’s mentoring center. She takes her role as a mentor seriously, encouraging young female attorneys to follow in her footsteps. She wrote a section for an America Bar Association book on women lawyers who took risks to form their own practices and was chosen out of 100 authors to share her experiences at the ABA Annual Meeting.
Unsung Hero Award
Susan F. Reed believes everyone deserves quality legal defense regardless of the horrific crimes they are accused of committing. She has represented drug dealers, serial rapists, and murderers. She is currently representing a notorious handyman-turned-alleged hitman in a very tough case since the defendant gave multiple stories to police and details of the murder have been leaked to local media. The judge said he assigned the case to Reed because he believes she does an exceptional job with clients in challenging situations. Beyond representing clients other attorneys may not want, Reed works to improve the work of all defense attorneys. A longtime active leader in the Wayne County Criminal Defense Bar, she currently serves as the organization’s president.
Click the caption below each photo to download a high resolution version of each award winner's photo. Note: We have provided the highest resolution photo available of each award winner. More information about the Annual Meeting can be found in the SBM Annual Meeting Media Kit.
Posted by Samantha Meinke