The part of my job I like the most is assisting a client through a trying time in their life by getting to know the goals and challenges they see in dealing with the particular situation, and then explaining the potential routes forward (including the good, bad, and ugly). The counseling part of being a lawyer is one of my favorite aspects – problem solving with the client and ensuring they understand the different options and implications for their issues. I also take pride in being someone who people can confide in. Achieving success for a client is the most rewarding part of my job.
Age I decided to become a lawyer: It was always an intriguing profession to me while I was growing up. Legal dramas and books about law were particularly inspiring, where the lawyers were depicted as strong and independent thought leaders who helped others by solving challenging problems. In particular, my experience at James Madison College at Michigan State educated me about the broad impact that the law can have – influencing and guiding culture, politics, social relations, and policy. I could see that becoming a lawyer would allow me to constantly learn as society and law change, and that I would be challenged to develop as I navigated those changes.
The highlight of my weekends: Spending time outdoors.
Best childhood memory: Spending summers at our family home “up north” on Grand Traverse Bay.
The way I unwind: Depending on my mood, a glass of red wine or yoga.
Things I would change about the legal profession: The lack of ethics some lawyers display before the court. It is disappointing what some lawyers will do to just to get “a win” and is part of the reason why society views lawyering as a scheming profession. Fighting with zeal does not include a disregard for civility or the truth.
Favorite food: Sushi
Favorite movie: Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and Office Space
Favorite band: I am extremely eclectic so it is hard to pick just one. I always enjoy reminiscing with 90s rap/hip hop/R&B, but also enjoy alternative, rock, and a live show by the DSO. I am, however, not one for country music.
If I wasn’t a lawyer, I’d be a: Real estate agent, urban planner, or someone who gets to travel the world (and make a living somehow by blogging or consulting in some way)
Beach or mountains: Definitely beach.
If I had an extra million dollars, I’d: First, pay off my law school loans, buy a house on a lake, and then find a productive way to donate a portion to a local charity that gives to people in need, like Focus:HOPE.
More about Jennifer as a Lawyer
Jennifer joined Altior in March 2020. Since graduating from The University of Detroit Mercy School of Law in 2009, she has gained over a decade of experience handling complex commercial litigation, product liability and business law matters, real estate transactions, and estate planning/probate matters.
Jennifer began her practice of law at a boutique firm in the heart of Detroit, with a focus on public pension system representation, business and real estate law. Thereafter, she expanded and honed her skills at a complex commercial litigation firm in Livonia. Jennifer’s experience over the years has included providing general counsel services and advice to various Metro-Detroit area businesses, assisting with corporate entity organization and governance, financing matters, acquisitions/sales, licensing, and day-to-day administrative matters. Her experience also includes analysis, negotiation, preparation, and litigation of contracts and transactional documents; litigation of fraud/misrepresentation matters; defense of product liability matters; investment/loan analysis and documentation; and liquor license transactions.
Jennifer is an Oakland County Bar Foundation Fellow (a distinction limited to less than 5% of the total active membership of the State Bar who practice in Oakland County), and was elected in 2019 to the State Bar of Michigan Representative Assembly for Circuit 3 (Wayne County), a position she hopes to continue on behalf of Oakland County due to her employment with Altior in Oakland County. She is also the current President of the Incorporated Society of Irish-American Lawyers (ISIAL), the first President to serve three terms since the Society was formed in 1978. Jennifer has also been recognized as a “Rising Star” in Business Law numerous times by Michigan Super Lawyers, and holds a Probate and Estate Planning Certificate from the State Bar of Michigan/Institute of Continuing Legal Education.
Jennifer has volunteered as a Moot Court Judge for the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law, and volunteers at least twice a year with Focus:HOPE packing boxes of food for those in need.
Jennifer is a 2005 graduate of James Madison College at Michigan State University where she graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Social Relations.