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Kraker Honored by MAMA as 2016 Distinguished Municipal Attorney of the Year

September 21, 2016

The Michigan Association of Municipal Attorneys (MAMA) has presented the Distinguished Municipal Attorney of the Year award to Varnum partner and long-time Grandville City Attorney Randall W. Kraker.

The award honors attorneys who have reached the highest level of professional accomplishment in the representation of cities or villages, and contributions to other municipal attorneys through participation in and service to professional organizations such as the Michigan Association of Municipal Attorneys (MAMA) and the International Municipal Lawyers Association (IMLA).

“His primary practice areas are municipal law, municipal finance law and land use and zoning law but, truly, we have yet to find an area where Mr. Kraker is not gifted,” Grandville City Manager Ken Krombeen said. “I have worked with Randall Kraker for over 30 years and have found him to be a clearly superior municipal attorney.”

Grandville City Manager Ken Krombeen, who nominated Kraker for the award, cited Kraker's numerous accomplishments and overall professional excellence in his nomination.  

“His primary practice areas are municipal law, municipal finance law and land use and zoning law but, truly, we have yet to find an area where Mr. Kraker is not gifted,” Krombeen said. “I have worked with Randall Kraker for over 30 years and have found him to be a clearly superior municipal attorney.”

Kraker has served with distinction as Grandville’s City Attorney since 1977 and he has an extensive and impressive resume of service to the City of Grandville, to municipal interests in general and to the legal profession, said MAMA President Clyde Robinson, Kalamazoo city attorney. (The full text of the nomination can be found here.)

Robinson presented Kraker with the award during the Sept. 12 Grandville City Council meeting. Joining Kraker at the event were his wife, Cathy, and sons Andrew and Matthew. Also present were colleagues from the Varnum law firm including Matt Zimmerman, Sue Wyngaarden, J. Patrick White, Paul Greenwald and Barbara Smith.

“It has been my privilege to work with a large number of outstanding public officials, both elected and appointed, during my career,” Kraker said in accepting the award. “My family has been understanding of the hundreds of evening meetings I have attended. I have had the support of many excellent lawyers and staff at my firm and have worked with many great municipal lawyers across Michigan.

"It is truly a special honor to receive the award from the Michigan Association of Municipal Attorneys recognizing my work over time with all of these individuals and I share it with them.”

Among his accomplishments, Kraker has been recognized by a variety of legal and law firm ranking organizations including The Best Lawyers in America®, where he is recognized in six areas of law and has been named "Lawyer of the Year" multiple times in Land Use and Zoning Law, Litigation - Municipal, and Litigation - Real Estate. He maintains an AV®Preeminent™ rating (the highest possible) by Martindale-Hubbell. Kraker holds a Master's degree in City and Regional Planning from Rutgers University, in addition to his law degree from Rutgers University School of Law.

The Michigan Association of Municipal Attorneys (MAMA) is a chartered section of the Michigan Municipal League, which is a Michigan non-profit corporation. MAMA was established in 1935 as an affiliated organization of the League. Membership consists of every city and village attorney, who represents a member of the Michigan Municipal League, their deputies and assistants, and League staff members duly admitted to practice law in the State of Michigan.

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