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Massaron selected as LCJ’s 2021 Cortese Award recipient


Plunkett Cooney appellate attorney Mary Massaron was recently selected by the Lawyers for Civil Justice (LCJ) to receive its 2021 Al Cortese Award.

The Al Cortese Award, which will be presented at the LCJ virtual meeting on May 6 at 5 p.m., recognizes outstanding contributions to the promotion of excellence and fairness in the civil justice system. The award is named in honor of Alfred W. Cortese, Jr., whose tenacious pursuit of balance and fairness in the civil justice system made a lasting contribution to the way in which civil justice is administered in the United States.

Massaron was selected in recognition of her work with establishing the LCJ’s Amicus Committee and program, and for her work on advocacy, including the amicus briefs she wrote, titled: “In re: National Prescription Opiate Litigation.”

This brief asked the appellate court to issue a writ of mandamus to correct the lower court’s rulings because they were inconsistent with the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and, therefore, violated the fundamental principles required for a court operating under the rule of law. This is an enormously important ruling, not only for this high-stakes Multi-District Litigation (MDL), but also because it holds that MDLs must comply with the rules just like in any other case – a position the LCJ has been advocating strongly as part of its Rules4MDLs project.

Massaron is one Plunkett Cooney’s most accomplished appellate attorneys with over 400 appeals to her credit, approximately 50 of which are published decisions. She is a past president of DRI – The Voice of the Defense Bar, and she has the distinction of being inducted into the prestigious American Academy of Appellate Attorneys. Massaron is a past chair of the American Bar Association Standing Committee on Amicus Briefs, and she is perennially identified as a top appellate attorney in Michigan by Martindale-Hubbell, Best Lawyers in America and other leading peer review organizations.

Over the last 20 years, Plunkett Cooney’s appellate lawyers have been lead counsel in more than 1,500 cases decided by state and federal appellate courts, including all Michigan appellate courts, the Ohio Supreme Court, the Indiana appellate courts, the California Court of Appeals, and numerous federal circuit courts of appeal. The firm’s lawyers have argued cases before the Michigan Supreme Court during each term since 1988. Collectively, they provide appellate expertise in a range of litigation from class actions to product liability to municipal law.

Established in 1913, Plunkett Cooney is a leading provider of business and litigation services to clients in the private and public sectors. The firm employs approximately 150 attorneys in seven Michigan cities, Chicago, Illinois; Columbus, Ohio; and Indianapolis, Indiana. Plunkett Cooney has achieved the highest rating (AV) awarded by Martindale-Hubbell and Crain’s Detroit Business named the firm its inaugural Law Firm of the Year.

For more information about Mary Massaron receiving the LCJ 2021 Al Cortese Award, contact Plunkett Cooney’s Director of Marketing and Business Development John Cornwell at (248) 901-4008;



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