Press Releases


Plunkett Cooney attorneys among ‘Best’ in America 2009

Bloomfield Hills

The Best Lawyers in America®, one of the nation’s oldest and most trusted peer-to-peer rating services, has named 12 Plunkett Cooney attorneys to its 2009 roster of top practitioners.   

Nominated by colleagues as standouts in their respective fields, Plunkett Cooney shareholders Michael P. Ashcraft, Jr.; Michael S. Bogren; William D. Booth; Jerome A. Galante; James R. Geroux; Robert G. Kamenec; Jack S. Levey; Stanley C. Moore, III; Christine D. Oldani; Mary Massaron; James C. Thomas and D. Jerry Watters were recently notified about their selection as “Best Lawyers.” As one of the Midwest’s largest full-service law firms, Plunkett Cooney has the distinction of several shareholders that have been on the best lawyers list for 10 or more years, as well as two new attorneys added to this year’s list.

Published biennially since 1983, The Best Lawyers in America® is widely regarded as the preeminent referral guide to the legal profession in the United States. The 14th edition of The Best Lawyers in America® (2009) is based on nearly two million detailed evaluations of lawyers by other colleagues in the profession. The list of honorees is compiled by Woodward/White Inc., a professional research company.

New to the list from Plunkett Cooney are shareholder Michael P. Ashcraft, Jr. and senior attorney Jack S. Levey. Ashcraft, who currently serves as the firm’s Professional Liability Practice Group Leader, was selected for his outstanding work in legal malpractice law. He concentrates his practice in the defense of attorneys and accountants in malpractice claims both directly and through insurance carriers. Levey, a member of the firm’s Columbus, Ohio office, was nominated in Best Lawyers for his expertise in real estate law. With nearly 30 years of experience, he focuses his practice in the areas of real estate, commercial leasing and contracts, business law, construction contracts and finance, and corporate aircraft transactions.

Six members of Plunkett Cooney’s Bloomfield Hills office have also received the “Best Lawyers” designation, including William D. Booth, who has been included on the list for over 20 years in the area of personal injury litigation. One of the firm’s most accomplished litigators, Booth is a past President of the Oakland County Bar Association, a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers and a member of the International Society of Barristers.

A 10-year veteran of the “Best Lawyers” list, D. Jerry Watters has been acknowledged once again for his expertise in the area of medical malpractice defense and personal injury litigation. An outstanding trial attorney, Watters has held leadership positions in several organizations, including the Association of Defense Trial Counsel (Past President) and the American College of Trial Lawyers.

Nominated for his expertise in Appellate Law, Bloomfield Hills attorney Robert G. Kamenec currently serves as Plunkett Cooney’s Insurance/Professional Liability Department Leader. He is a member of the American Academy of Appellate Attorneys and a past “Lawyer of the Year,” as selected by Michigan Lawyers Weekly, a leading publication serving the state’s legal industry.

Jerome A. Galante was honored as a Best Lawyer in the category of personal injury litigation. He is a member of Plunkett Cooney’s Board of Directors and a past member of the Board of Directors of the International Association of Defense Counsel. He specializes in the area of construction law and has developed an extensive litigation and trial practice.

Stanley C. Moore III, nominated for his expertise in the areas of labor and employment law, exclusively represents management in union and non-union settings in both the private and public sectors. He is a member of the National Labor Relations Board Region 7 Practice and Procedure

Committee, a former chair of the Oakland County Bar Association Employment Law Committee and a past member of the Labor and Employment Law Section Council of the State Bar of Michigan.

James R. Geroux, who is a member of the firm’s Detroit office, has been named among the Best Lawyers for workers’ compensation defense, the area in which he exclusively represents employers directly and through their insurance providers. He is a former member of the State Bar of Michigan Rules Committee and Workers’ Compensation Section Council, and he is a past National Chairman of ALFA International’s Workers’ Compensation Practice Group.

Also a member of the firm’s Detroit office, Christine D. Oldani, has been recognized for her appellate law practice. She is one of Michigan’s most accomplished attorneys with over 100 published decisions to her credit. During her more than 30 years in practice, Oldani, who is a Fellow of the American Academy of Appellate Attorneys, has drafted numerous amicus curiae briefs on behalf of municipal clients. She has also drafted legislation and consulted extensively on legislative issues.

Joining Oldani from the firm’s Detroit office is shareholder Mary Massaron, who currently serves as the firm’s Appellate Law Practice Group Leader and a member of Plunkett Cooney’s Board of Directors, she has argued numerous appellate cases, resulting in more than 50 published decisions. A Fellow of the American Academy of Appellate Attorneys, Massaron had the distinction of serving as a member of the American Bar Association Standing Committee on Amicus Curiae Briefs, the five-member committee that oversees preparation of ABA briefs for filing in the United States Supreme Court and other courts.

An Of Counsel member of Plunkett Cooney’s Detroit Office, James C. Thomas is one of Michigan’s most accomplished criminal defense attorneys and has been included on the Best Lawyers list for his non-white collar and white-collar defense work. He is the 2007 Gilman Award recipient, which is presented annually by the Federal Bar Association, Michigan Chapter to outstanding practitioners in the area of criminal law. He has also received the “Defender of Justice Award” from the National Lawyers Guild and the “Justice for All Award” from the Criminal Defense Attorneys of Michigan, an organization for which he currently serves as a member of its board of directors.

Kalamazoo attorney Michael S. Bogren, who currently serves as the firm’s Regional Office Department Leader and Secretary-Treasurer of Plunkett Cooney’s Board of Directors, has been recognized by Best Lawyers as a leading Michigan municipal law attorney. He has successfully represented municipalities in both state and federal court in police liability claims, first amendment law, due process claims, Open Meetings Act and FOIA claims, zoning matters, civil rights cases and employment litigation.

Established in 1913, Plunkett Cooney employs more than 150 attorneys in nine Michigan cities, Columbus, Ohio and Indianapolis, Indiana. The firm has achieved the highest rating (AV) awarded by Martindale-Hubbell, a leading, international directory of law firms and has received several awards naming the firm a top place to work in the legal industry.

For more information about Plunkett Cooney’s 2009 “Best Lawyers in America,” contact the firm’s Practice Development Manager, John Cornwell at (248) 901-4008.

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