Lawrence P. Nolan, of Eaton Rapids, has been sworn in as the 82nd president of the State Bar of Michigan. Michigan Supreme Court Chief Justice Robert P. Young Jr. presided at the Sept. 22 ceremony, which took place in conjunction with the SBM Annual Meeting at DeVos Place in Grand Rapids.
Nolan is the founder and president of Nolan, Thomsen & Villas in Eaton Rapids, where he focuses his practice on personal injury, wrongful death, criminal, probate, domestic relations, estate planning and real estate law.
Michigan Supreme Court Chief Justice Robert P. Young Jr. also swore in other officers for the 2016-2017 bar year, including President-Elect Donald G. Rockwell, of Flint; Vice President Jennifer M. Grieco, of Birmingham; Secretary Dennis M. Barnes, of Detroit; and Treasurer Robert J. Buchanan, of Grand Rapids.
Nolan will lead an organization of over 45,000 members that works to improve the administration of justice, promotes the legal profession, and builds public understanding of the legal system. He has been involved in State Bar work for more than a decade and has served on many of its committees and groups. He has served on the SBM Board of Commissioners since 2006, and has served as treasurer, secretary, vice president, and president-elect. He has also served on the State Bar of Michigan Representative Assembly.
Nolan served as president of the Ingham County Bar Association from 2003-2004, the Ingham County Bar Foundation from 2005-2009, the Thomas M. Cooley Chapter of the American Inns of Court from 2004-2006, and the Eaton Rapids Rotary Club from 1985-1986. He served as president of the Diocese of Lansing Catholic Lawyers Guild from 2013-2015. He has also served on the Thomas M. Cooley Law School Board since 1983, and currently serves as its vice chairperson. He is a fellow of the Ingham County Bar Foundation and the Michigan State Bar Foundation. He also serves as the secretary of the Michigan Supreme Court Historical Society. Nolan serves as a founding member of the Legal Eagles hockey team, and still serves as the team’s captain. He has received the Louis A. Smith Distinguished Jurist Award, the Ingham County Bar Association’s prestigious Leo Farhat Outstanding Attorney Award, and the Thomas M. Cooley Distinguished Alumni Award. Michigan Lawyers Weekly has also named him a Leader in the Law.
He received his bachelor’s degree from Western Michigan University, and he earned his juris doctor from Thomas M. Cooley Law School.