Louis F. Ronayne

Louie Ronayne

Practice Areas

Industries

Education

Michigan State University College of Law
East Lansing, Michigan
J.D., magna cum laude, 2017
Journal of Business and Securities Law, Executive Editor and Assistant Publication Editor

Adrian College
Adrian, Michigan
B.A., cum laude, Political Science, 2014

Bar Admissions

Michigan

Court Admissions

All Michigan state courts

United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit

United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan

United States District Court for the Western District of Michigan

Litigation Attorney

Louie is a member of the Litigation and ADR Team. He represents clients in a wide range of business and commercial litigation matters, from high-stakes automotive supplier disputes to suits involving state and local units of government.  He is experienced in emergency litigation including actions for temporary restraining orders and preliminary injunctions. He also represents clients in a variety of contract and real estate disputes. Louie has first chair trial and appellate experience, including before the Michigan Court of Appeals and Michigan Supreme Court.

Following law school, Louie served as a research attorney for the Michigan Court of Appeals, then as a judicial law clerk at the Michigan Supreme Court for the Hon. Brian K. Zahra. 

Experience

Obtained emergency temporary restraining order in state circuit court for tier-1 automotive supplier in high-stakes dispute.

Obtained mandatory preliminary injunction in federal court on behalf of tier-1 automotive supplier and successfully defending it on appeal.

Obtained summary dismissal in arbitration on behalf of former investor in restaurant franchise facing seven figures in liability.

Obtained six-figure settlement for purchaser of a restaurant after dispute arose following the transaction, without litigation.

Obtained numerous judgments quieting title in cases where it was necessary to the client developer to close a large transaction.

Negotiated favorable settlement on behalf of non-profit in case involving deed fraud against six parcels of real property.

Successfully represented large agricultural processor in public nuisance action by obtaining results that allowed the company to keep operating, following a bench trial.

Representation of large tier-1 supplier in four automotive defect class actions, large plastics manufacturer against buyer in high-stakes contract and unfair competition dispute, investors committee against several global banks stemming from notorious international fraud scheme, several entities in the construction and infrastructure industries, and several LLC member and contract disputes, and real estate disputes.

Authored successful merits brief in Turner v Farmers Ins, 953 NW2d 204 (2021).

Obtained summary disposition on behalf of a bank against a disgruntled commercial borrower.

Favorably resolved real estate dispute without litigation on behalf of a residential seller after purchaser repudiated.

 

Honors and Recognitions

Best Lawyers in America®, Ones to Watch – Commercial Litigation, Appellate Law, since 2022

Best Lawyers in America®, Ones to Watch – Construction Law, since 2023

Professional Affiliations

State Bar of Michigan

Detroit Catholic Central Shamrock Bar Association

Community Involvement

Hearts of Hope International, volunteer

Northridge Church, member

Northville Christian School, volunteer

Sandra L. Fox

Practice Areas

Education

Henry Ford Community College
Dearborn, Michigan

Dorsey Business School
Administrative Assistant Program

Paralegal

Sandy is a paralegal with more than 20 years law firm experience, focused on Family Law. Sandy also has worked with attorneys practicing in litigation, national bankruptcy, corporate and estate planning, as well as assisting experts in forensic accounting / record review.

Thomas J. Kenny

Thomas J. Kenny

Practice Areas

Education

Detroit College of Law
Detroit, Michigan
J.D.

Wayne State University
Detroit, Michigan
B.A., Mathematics

Bar Admissions

Michigan

Court Admissions

All Michigan state courts

Tax Attorney

Tom is a member of the Tax Practice Team. His practice includes civil and criminal tax litigation. Previously employed by the Department of Attorney General, Tom acted as legal counsel to the Department of Treasury in litigation matters before the Michigan Tax Tribunal, Court of Claims, Court of Appeals and Supreme Court. Prior to his employment with the Michigan Attorney General, he was an assistant prosecuting attorney in Detroit and handled criminal litigation and appeals.

Tom’s tax practice focuses on the representation of Fortune 1000 companies in State and Local Tax (SALT) litigation, which includes sales, use, corporate income, motor fuel, tobacco, real and personal property and Michigan Business Tax matters. He has represented clients before administrative agencies and courts in Michigan and around the country. The multistate representation includes tax cases in Indiana, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Tennessee.

Experience

Tribal Tax

Counsel for the twelve federally recognized Michigan tribes in the negotiation of the Tribal-State of Michigan Tax Compact (December 2002)

South Dakota Tribal Taxation: Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate Tribal Tax Seminar (South Dakota, 2006), instructor

Representative Tax Litigation

People v. Shami, 501 Mich. 243 (2018)

Keweenaw Bay Indian Community v. Department of Treasury, 322 Mich. App. 46 (2017)

Total Foundations v. Department of Treasury, Michigan Court of Appeals Docket No.: 322983 (2016)

General Motors Corporation v. Department of Treasury, Michigan Court of Appeals Docket No.:  303822 (2012)

William Davidson a/k/a Detroit Pistons Basketball Company v. Department of Treasury, Michigan Court of Appeals Docket No.: 308175 (2012)

Automotive Components Holding Company/Ford Motor Company v. Ypsilanti Township, Michigan Tax Tribunal Docket No.: 327618 (2010)

AutoAlliance International Inc. v. Department of Treasury, 282 Mich. App. 492 (2009)

Freightliner LLC v. Indiana Department of Revenue, Indiana Tax Court Case No.: 49T10-0611-TA-102 (2007)

UBS Financial Services (f/k/a PaineWebber) v. Ohio Department of Taxation, Ohio Board of Tax Appeals Docket No.: 2003-P-1139 (2005)

Compuware Corporation v. Department of Treasury, Michigan Tax Tribunal Docket No.: 303847 (2005)

Elsheick v. Department of Treasury, 225 Mich. App. 575 (1997)

Lindsey Anderson Sagar Trust v. Department of Treasury, 204 Mich. App. 128 (1994)

Caterpillar v. Department of Treasury, 440 Mich. 400 (1992), cert. denied, 506 U.S. 1014 (1992) (Amicus Curiae)

J.C. Penney v. Department of Treasury, 171 Mich. App. 30 (1988)

Honeywell, Inc. v. Department of Treasury, 167 Mich. App. 446 (1988)

Kelser v. Department of Treasury, 167 Mich. App. 18 (1988)

Professional Affiliations

American Bar Association

State Bar of Michigan: Taxation Section, State and Local Tax Committee, chair,  2000 – 2002; Council member, 2002 – 2005

Maureen Rouse-Ayoub

Practice Areas

Industries

Education

Detroit College of Law
Detroit, Michigan
J.D., 1992

Madonna University
Livonia, Michigan
B.S., 1988

Bar Admissions

Michigan

Court Admissions

All Michigan state courts

United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan

Labor and Employment Attorney

Maureen is a partner and leads Varnum’s Labor and Employment Practice Team. She represents clients in all areas of labor and employment. She advises clients on labor management relations including union election proceedings, collective bargaining and contract enforcement in arbitration and before the National Labor Relations Board. Maureen defends employment-related claims including discrimination, sexual harassment, wrongful discharge, Whistleblowers’ and Fair Labor Standards Act violations in federal and state courts, administrative proceedings and arbitration hearings. She counsels clients on drafting, implementation and enforcement of workplace policies. She has significant experience working with companies in a variety of industries including manufacturing, automotive, logistics and health care.

Maureen regularly writes and speaks on a variety of labor and employment matters. She is a frequent presenter for Michigan Chamber of Commerce programs.

Honors and Recognitions

Best Lawyers in America®, Litigation – Labor and Employment, 2021 and 2022

BTI Client Service All-Star since 2020

DBusiness© Top Lawyers, Labor and Employment Law, since 2016

Michigan Lawyers Weekly, Influential Women of Law, 2022

Michigan Super Lawyers® since 2012

Professional Affiliations

Detroit Bar Association

Oakland County Bar Association

State Bar of Michigan

Michigan Chamber of Commerce Health and Human Resources Committee

Community Involvement

Northern Michigan Adaptive Sports

Presentations

Reasonable COVID Accommodations, Michigan Chamber of Commerce, July 2021

HR Issues to Look for in the New Year, Missouri Chamber of Commerce, December 2020

What Employees Need to Know About the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, Michigan Chamber of Commerce, 2020

FMLA and ADA: Managing Leave Request Doesn’t Need to be Complicated, Michigan Chamber of Commerce, November 2020

COVID-19 Legal Updates, Comerica, October 2020

Put To the Test: When You Are Faced With a Workplace Investigation, Missouri Chamber of Commerce, July 2020

Best Practices for Managing Return to Work After COVID, Michigan Chamber of Commerce, June 2020

New Workplace Norms Will Greet Workers as They Get Back on the Job, Fox 17 News Interview, April 2020

With Michigan Schools Out, Businesses Grapple with Productivity Woes, Crain’s Detroit Business, April 2020

Fear of the Workplace – What to Expect, Missouri Chamber of Commerce, April 2020

Employment Law Update: Top 10 Hot Topics, Michigan Chamber of Commerce, January 2020

Leadership Training, Silver Pine Medical Group, September 2019

Employee Handbooks – What to Include and Why, MIRS, July 2019

Preventing Harassment and Discrimination in the Workplace, BCS Automotive, June 2019

HR “Hot Button” Topics in the Green Industry, MGIA Trade Show Presentation, May 2019

Employment Law Update, Michigan Chamber of Commerce, January 2019

Workplace Harassment: New Awareness and Strategies to Address an Old Problem, 2018 MISHRM Conference, October 2018, Traverse City, MI

It’s So Hard to Say Goodbye: Employment Terminations; and Supreme Court Decisions: Recent Rulings and Potential Landmines in 2018, Varnum Labor and Employment Seminar, May 22, 2018, Detroit, MI

2018 Employment Law Update: Top Ten Hot Button Topics, Michigan Chamber of Commerce, January 2018, Novi, MI

Responding to HR Sticky Situations 2, Co-Presenter, Michigan Chamber of Commerce, December 2016, Novi, MI

FLSA Overtime Rules Take Effect for Exempt Employees on December 1: Are You Prepared?, Bodman Sunrise Series Meetings, November 10, 2016, Ann Arbor, MI; November 15, 2016, Detroit, MI; and November 17, 2016, Troy, MI

HR Sticky Situations: How Would You Respond?, Co-Presenter, Michigan Chamber of Commerce, June 2016, Novi, MI

Disability in the Workplace, ADA, FMLA, Workers’ Comp, December 8, 2015, Lansing, MI

FMLA Update on Same-Sex Spouses Benefits Rule, Co-presenter, Bodman Sunrise Series Meetings, March 31, 2015, Ann Arbor, MI; April 1, 2015, Detroit, MI; and April 2, 2015

Your Computer or Mine – Employees’ Right to Employers’ E-mail Systems and Other Electronic Systems (Management’s Perspective), The Bernard Gottfried Memorial Labor Law Symposium, October 2015, Detroit, MI

Is Your Workplace Prepared for Increased Government Scrutiny?, Bodman PLC, November 10, 2014, Detroit, MI

Annual FMLA Update, Crittenton Hospital Medical Center, 2008-2013, Rochester, MI

Face Off With Facebook, Washtenaw Dental Association, June 2012, Ann Arbor, MI

What Every Employer Needs to Know to Survive 2012, Bodman PLC, Detroit, MI

Monitoring and Controlling Employee Use of Social Media, Bodman PLC, October 21, 2010, Livonia, MI

FMLA, COBRA and Ledbetter: Are You Compliant?, Bodman PLC, Workplace Forward Series, May 28, 2009, Livonia, MI

Restoring Employee Rights in a Unionized Workplace, Michigan Chamber of Commerce, November 20, 2008, Lansing, MI

Employment Law Under the New Administration, Bodman PLC, Workplace Forward Series, November 8, 2008, Lansing, MI

Managing Leaves of Absence, Crittenton Hospital Medical Center, October 2008, Rochester, MI

The Bernard Gottfried Memorial Labor Law Symposium, Panel Discussion Member, October 2008, Detroit, MI

Boosting Employee Morale, Howell Area Chamber of Commerce, April 2007, Howell, MI

Remaining Union Free, CEO Roundtable, Shiawassee Regional Chamber of Commerce, September 9, 2005, Owosso, MI

Basic Training: The 3R’s, Recruiting, Records & Retention, Health Care Recruiters Association of Metro Detroit – Keynote Speaker, September 30, 2004, Detroit, MI

Civil Rights Law: Avoiding Discrimination in the Workplace, American Society of Employers, March 11, May 7 and October 23, 2003, Southfield, MI

Understanding US/Canadian Labor and Employment Law, Michigan Chamber Services, March 12, 2002, Livonia, MI

Managing Disability and Leaves of Absence in Michigan, Lorman Education Services, September 7, 2000, Livonia, MI

John C. Ray

John C. Ray

Practice Areas

Education

Lawrence Technological University

 

Certified Public Accountant

John is a certified public accountant who focuses on federal and multi-state controversies, audits, tax planning and litigation support.

John was formerly employed by the Michigan Department of Treasury as an auditor, audit supervisor and audit manager for Michigan sales, use, personal income, motor fuel and single business taxes audits.

David F. Wrublewski

David F. Wrublewski

Practice Areas

Education

Wayne State University
Detroit, Michigan
B.S., Accounting, 1971

Tax Professional

David is a tax investigative specialist in the tax group. He specializes in matters of civil and criminal investigations and defense, including complex forensic accounting and advanced investigatory techniques. Prior to joining Varnum, he was a special agent with the Internal Revenue Service for over 30 years.

Kristen M. Veresh

Kristen M. Veresh

Practice Areas

Education

Northwestern University School of Law
Chicago, Illinois
J.D.

University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, Michigan
B.S., Industrial and Operations
Engineering

Bar Admissions

Michigan

Court Admissions

All Michigan state courts

Finance Attorney

Kristen is the co-leader of the Banking, Finance and Restructuring Practice Team. Her practice focuses on the representation of lenders and borrowers in a variety of commercial finance transactions involving real estate, construction financing, acquisition financing and asset-based lending. She has led and closed numerous commercial finance transactions involving various structures including multi-currency facilities, single and multi-bank transactions, and syndicated loan transactions.

Experience

Representation of borrowers with locations in the U.S. and Canada (including Quebec) as lead attorney in connection with a multi-currency, syndicated $210,000,000 secured revolving credit facility, featuring U.S. and Canadian borrowing bases, swing line and letter of credit sublimits.

Representation of agent bank in syndicated $210,000,000 secured revolving credit facility involving pari passu term debt from non-bank group members, requiring negotiations of multiple inter-creditor arrangements.

Representation of agent bank in multi-currency, syndicated loan facilities involving foreign and domestic loan parties and revolving, term and CAPEX loan facilities.

Representation of the borrower in a $45,000,000 revolving credit facility, in addition to general representation of such borrower in all relevant financial matters including pursuit and closing of a Main Street Loan and leasehold improvement financing with other lending institutions.

Representation of lender in the financing of a $35,000,000 real estate acquisition in Arkansas, structured to facilitate the borrower’s participation in Arkansas’ PILOT incentive program pursuant to which the borrower would receive property tax abatement in connection with such acquired property.

Honors and Recognitions

Best Lawyers in America®, 2023

Best Lawyers in America®, Ann Arbor Lawyer of the Year – Banking and Finance Law, 2024

DBusiness© magazine, Top Lawyers, Banking and Financial Services Law, Since 2022

Michigan Super Lawyers®, Rising Star, since 2018 

Professional Affiliations

Association for Corporate Growth

Oakland County Bar Association

Risk Management Association

State Bar of Michigan

Community Involvement

Northwestern University, Alumni Association

University of Michigan, Alumni Association

Nina A. Thekdi

Nina A. Thekdi

Practice Areas

Industries

Education

Michigan State University College of Law
East Lansing, Michigan
J.D., summa cum laude, 2006
Michigan State Law Review, Editor

Oakland University
Rochester, Michigan
M.S., Systems Engineering, 2002

University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, Michigan
B.S., Industrial and Operations
Engineering, 2000

Bar Admissions

Michigan

Court Admissions

All Michigan state courts

Immigration Attorney

Nina focuses her practice on business and family-based immigration matters. Her experience encompasses all nonimmigrant visa petitions including H-1B, E, L-1A, L-1B, TN under the USMCA (formerly NAFTA) treaty and O-1 visas. She also assists clients with employment-based permanent residence petitions including the EB-2/EB-3 labor certifications process, EB-1 extraordinary ability, EB-1 outstanding professor and researchers and EB-1 multinational managers and executives petitions; family-based permanent residence applications; naturalization applications; and foreign visa issues. She guides clients through the process of obtaining short-term visas and permanent residence status for skilled personnel, including technical professionals, accountants, scientists, managers and executives. Nina also provides counsel regarding effective immigration compliance programs

Nina’s clients range from emerging companies to multinational organizations in industries such as food processing, manufacturing, information technology and financial services.

Honors and Recognitions

Lawyers of Color Hot List – Midwest Region, 2013

Michigan Lawyers Weekly, Up and Coming Lawyer, 2014

Professional Affiliations

American Immigration Lawyers Association

Inforum

State Bar of Michigan

Community Involvement

Gleaners Community Food Bank, Development Committee member

Gregory M. Wright

Practice Areas

Industries

Education

University of Notre Dame Law School
South Bend, Indiana
J.D., cum laude, 2005
Journal of College and University Law, Executive Articles Editor

University of Notre Dame
South Bend, Indiana
B.A., Government and Economics, magna cum laude, 2002

Bar Admissions

Illinois

Michigan

New York

 

Corporate Attorney

Greg is a member of Varnum’s corporate and mobility practice teams. He has extensive experience representing private equity firms, family offices, management groups, strategic investors and shareholders in mergers, acquisitions and divestitures of assets and equity. Greg also works closely with subsidiaries of foreign-owned companies to help them establish and grow businesses in the United States.

Greg provides advice and support in connection with the negotiation of commercial contracts, the establishment of joint ventures and the raising of debt and equity capital.

Greg also represents companies engaged in the development and commercialization of emerging mobility technologies to manage risk in their contractual relationships.

Additionally, Greg serves on Varnum’s Corporate Transparency Act (CTA) Taskforce, which specializes in CTA compliance, guidance and analysis. Visit our CTA Resource Center for more information.

Experience

Mergers and Acquisitions

Represented the sole shareholder of franchisor of supermarket-based sushi counters in the sale of the company to a publicly-traded Japanese food service company for $257 million.

Represented Australian SaaS client in equity acquisition of U.S. eCommerce platform for mixed consideration.

Represented shareholders in the sale of equity in a multinational IT services and consulting business.

Represented private equity client in purchase of equity in Midwestern metalworking company from European parent company and negotiation of future relationship with team of management investors.

Represented owner of food service industry equipment manufacturer in sale of all equity interests of company to a strategic buyer.

Represented private equity client in acquisition of equity of limited liability company engaged in provision of digital and conventional printing and marketing services.

Represented electric cooperative in $127 million acquisition of distribution assets from public company and divestiture of assets to its member cooperatives in 12 simultaneous asset sales.

Mobility

Represent leading provider of autonomous ride-hail and shuttle services in the drafting of and negotiation of services agreements and terms and conditions for various business models.

Represent provider of autonomous vehicle services to passengers in negotiation of contractual relationships with collaboration partners and service providers.

Securities, Joint Ventures and General Corporate Matters

Represented real estate developers in successful capital raise through private placement including formation of limited liability company, drafting and negotiation of limited liability company agreement, preparation of offering memorandum and submission of filings to federal and state regulators.

Represented U.S. biopharmaceutical company in negotiating terms of clinical trial agreements.

Represented foreign company and its U.S. subsidiary in the negotiation of original design manufacture of new line of power tools.

Drafted and negotiated agreement for purchase of rolling stock by not-for-profit client constructing and operating passenger light rail system in Detroit.

Represented real estate developer in negotiation of joint venture and purchase of real estate by joint venture for purpose of constructing multi-unit residential development.

Represented private real estate brokerage in negotiation and drafting of limited liability company agreements for various joint ventures for the purchase and development of retail stores.

Professional Affiliations

State Bar of Michigan

IrishAngels angel investment group

Community Involvement

Notre Dame Club of Detroit, board member

German American Business Council of Michigan

Amandla Charter School, Chicago, director 2011-2015

National Immigrant Justice Center, Chicago – Junior Leadership Board, 2011-2017

Lauren E. Potocsky

Lauren E. Potocsky

Practice Areas

Industries

Education

Wayne State University Law School
Detroit, Michigan
J.D., cum laude, 2017
Order of the Coif
Editor-in-Chief, Wayne Law Review

Michigan State University, James Madison College
East Lansing, Michigan
B.A., with honors, 2014

Bar Admissions

Michigan

Court Admissions

All Michigan state courts

United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan

United States District Court for the Western District of Michigan

Real Estate Attorney

Lauren is a member of Varnum’s Real Estate Practice Team. She regularly counsels clients on the acquisition, financing, sale and leasing of commercial property, including retail shopping centers and office and industrial buildings. Lauren also has significant experience representing clients in the sale and acquisition of medical office buildings, as well as the subsequent leasing of medical office space to physician groups, hospitals and medical practices. Her clients range from large, multimillion dollar companies to startup entrepreneurs and she represents both landlords and tenants, buyers and sellers. 

Lauren also supports Varnum’s Construction Law Team by reviewing and advising clients on contractual matters. In addition, she assists Varnum’s White Collar Defense Practice Team with internal investigations.

For the past three years, Lauren has been named by Best Lawyers® as one of the “Ones to Watch,” a designation given to attorneys who are earlier in their careers in recognition of their outstanding professional excellence in private practice.

While in law school, Lauren was a member of the first place team of the Arthur Neef Moot Court Finals, and was a quarterfinalist in the Robert F. Wagner National Labor and Employment Law Moot Court Competition, one of the country’s most prestigious competitions.

Experience

Lead associate on multi-property acquisition of 500,000+ square feet of medical office space and related structuring of real estate investment fund exceeding $194 million in value. 

Lead associate on acquisition and financing of 90,000 square foot medical office building with value in excess of $27 million including subsequent leasing of the medical office space.

Lead associate on acquisition and financing of 55,000 square foot medical office building with value in excess of $16 million including subsequent leasing of the medical office space.

Member of the team assembled by the Independent Monitor by the U.S. Department of Justice to oversee General Motors’ compliance with its obligations under the Deferred Prosecution Agreement stemming from its recall of defective ignition switches.

Honors and Recognitions

Best Lawyers in America®, Ones to Watch, Construction and Real Estate Law, since 2021

Michigan Super Lawyers®, Rising Star, since 2020

Professional Affiliations

Detroit Bar Association

Oakland County Bar Association

State Bar of Michigan

Community Involvement

Northville Community Foundation, Board