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Varnum Business Professionals Recognized as Unsung Legal Heroes by Michigan Lawyers Weekly

December 14, 2022

Varnum business professionals Julie Long, Ruth Reickard and Karri Standish are among the 25 honorees recognized by Michigan Lawyers Weekly in this year’s “Unsung Legal Heroes – Class of 2022.”

“These honorees have consistently gone above and beyond the call of duty, often behind the scenes,” Michigan Lawyers Weekly stated. “This award is reserved for the state’s most talented and dedicated legal support professionals, from firm administrators to legal marketing to paralegals.”

Each of Varnum’s honorees was nominated by attorneys and others who work with them.

Julie Long is a team leader and trainer in Varnum’s IT department. She began her career at Varnum in 1997 as a technician, training attorneys and staff on various computer programs and systems. Her nomination read in part: “Julie is always willing to help resolve a wide range of IT matters, even on a moment’s notice. She has a consistently positive and helpful attitude, and regularly follows up to make sure the issue has been resolved. She also regularly provides additional tips and pointers to help in the future should a similar issue arise. Julie truly knows it all, and the firm is better because of her experience and many, many contributions to the IT department.”

Ruth Reickard is a legal assistant and has been with the firm since 1983, serving primarily with the corporate team. Her nomination noted her “tremendous skill set and devotion to clients” as well as her efforts to help integrate attorneys who are new to the firm. Her nomination stated in part: “While many might say they are dedicated to client service, Ruth Reickard’s actions over more than 35 years have undeniably demonstrated her dedication. She will do whatever it takes to ensure client needs are met. Ruth is in the office early and stays late, as she so often goes above and beyond the call of duty for clients. Those who work with Ruth can rely on her to take ownership of the project and make sure it is done correctly.”

Karri Standish came to Varnum early in 2019 and serves as a legal assistant to several attorneys. Her nomination read in part: “Due to a variety of circumstances – including issues resulting from the pandemic and remote work schedules – Karri has performed the roles of office receptionist, legal assistant, IT specialist and a whole host of other duties at our office for most of the past two years. Karri manages the workload of five attorneys, has a great ‘can do’ attitude, and has been a great benefit to the people she supports.”

Varnum Executive Partner Scott Hill congratulated this year’s honorees and emphasized the importance of staff to the firm’s client service.

“We are very proud of Julie, Ruth and Karri and gratified that they have chosen to fulfill their careers at Varnum,” Hill said. “They each exemplify the highest commitment to exceptional client service. They are valued members of the firm and well deserving of this recognition.”

The 2022 Unsung Legal Heroes honorees will be profiled by Michigan Lawyers Weekly in a special digital supplement to be distributed on December 19. More about the program and honorees can be found at

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