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WLAM 2016-2017 Officers

Women Lawyers Association of Michigan (WLAM) held elections at their 98th Annual Meeting. WLAM is proud to present the following outstanding attorneys serving as Officers in 2016-2017: Suzanne Sukkar, President; Julie Gafkay, President-Elect; Donna MacKenzie, Vice President; Alena Clark, Treasurer; Roquia Draper, Secretary; and Kristen Pursley, Immediate Past-President.

WLAM President Suzanne Sukkar
President Suzanne Sukkar is an attorney with Dickinson Wright in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Ms. Sukkar specializes in business immigration law and compliance. She represents individuals and corporate clients in the sponsorship of nonimmigrant and immigrant employment-based visas. Ms. Sukkar has developed a niche expertise in the area of E-1/E-2 (treaty trader/investor) visas, EB-5 immigrant investor visas, consular processing, and start-up ventures. She is also an active member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA). Ms. Sukkar’s honors include being listed in Best Lawyers in America, Michigan Super Lawyers “Rising Star” for 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015, and selected as an American Bar Foundation Fellow. In June 2015, she was appointed to the State of Michigan’s Commission on Middle Eastern American Affairs by Michigan Governor Rick Snyder. Since 2005, Ms. Sukkar has served on the WLAM state and regional boards. She also serves on the Board of the American Arab Chamber of Commerce.

WLAM President Elect Gafkay
President Elect Julie Gafkay is a partner at Gafkay Law, PLC which is a statewide practice located in Frankenmuth, Michigan and specializes in employment law including gender discrimination, race discrimination, disability discrimination, retaliation, civil rights and wrongful discharge. Ms. Gafkay graduated with honors from Whittier Law School in 1995. She is a past-President of the Saginaw County Bar, serves on the Board of Governors for the Frankenmuth Community Foundation, serves on the Board of the Frankenmuth Chamber of Commerce, serves on the Board of the Frankenmuth Farmers Market, and is past-President of WLAM’s Great Lakes Bay Region. She was one of the Top 20 Women in Law in 2012 and has been designated a Michigan Super Lawyer 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2014.

WLAM Vice President MacKenzie
Vice President Donna M. MacKenzie is an attorney with Olsman MacKenzie & Wallace and she specializes in representing individuals injured as a result of nursing home neglect and abuse and medical malpractice. She is the author of a number of legal articles, and a featured speaker at seminars presented by the Institute for Continuing Legal Education, State Bar of Michigan, American Association for Justice, and Michigan Association for Justice. Ms. MacKenzie’s honors include recognition as a 2010 Up & Coming Lawyer by Michigan Lawyers Weekly, a four-time Super Lawyer “Rising Star”, a 2013 Super Lawyer, and a Pacesetter by the Michigan Association for Justice. Ms. MacKenzie was selected to the dbusiness magazine Metro Detroit Top Lawyers 2014 list. Ms. MacKenzie is on the Executive Board for the Michigan Association for Justice. She also serves on the Board of Governors for the American Association for Justice.

WLAM Treasurer Clark
Treasurer Alena Clark is a Saginaw County Assistant Prosecuting Attorney. Prior to working for the Prosecutor’s Office, Ms. Clark served as a Law Clerk for the City of Dearborn Corporation Counsel. After working for the City of Dearborn, she served as a Judicial Staff Attorney to the Honorable Charlene M. Elder of the Wayne County Circuit Court-Domestic Relations Division, and then as a Judicial Staff Attorney to the Honorable Daniel A. O’Brien of the Oakland County Probate Court. She obtained her JD from the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law, and BA from Western Michigan University. She has served on the WLAM-Wayne Regional Board as Treasurer, Vice President, and Regional Representative. Alena was also the 2009 WLAM Regional Leadership Award recipient.

WLAM Secretary Draper

Secretary Roquia Draper is an associate attorney with the all-specialty law firm of Warner Norcross & Judd LLP.  Ms. Draper specializes in the area of family law litigation , which includes pre- and post-nuptial agreements, divorces, custody and parenting time disputes, child support issues, and stepparent adoptions.  Ms. Draper graduated magna cum laude from Wayne State University Law School in 2011, and is a member of the Order of the Coif and the Phi Betta Kappa Society.  She is also a member of multiple Local, State and Federal bar associations, and is particularly active in the Oakland County Bar Association.   She additionally serves on the Executive Board and is a active member of the Oakland County Inns of Court.  She has been named as a Michigan Super Lawyers Rising Star for 2015 and 2016.

WLAM Past President Pursley
Past President Kristen Pursley is a shareholder at The Dobrusin Law Firm in Pontiac, Michigan and specializes in patent, trademark and copyright law. Ms. Pursley was previously employed at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital in the office of Intellectual Property and Venture Development and as a corporate paralegal at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich and Rosati in Palo Alto, California. Ms. Pursley is currently the President for the Women’s Bar Association (the Oakland County Region of WLAM.) She is active in the Technology Committee for Automation Alley and is also a member of Michigan Intellectual Property Inn of Court. She is an instructor at Tech Shop in Allen Park, a Business Advisory Board Member at the Macomb-OU INCubator and acts as Pro Bono Counsel for the Pontiac Downtown Business Association and the Great Lakes Agricultural Fair. Ms. Pursley was a Michigan Lawyers Weekly 2013 Women in the Law honoree and is a SuperLawyers® Rising Star for 2013.

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