October 10, 2011
Cooley Assistant Dean, Graduate Receive Appointments by the Michigan Supreme Court
Martha Denning Moore, assistant dean and professor at Thomas M. Cooley Law School's Ann Arbor campus, and David Porteous, graduate of Cooley and principal of the law firm of McCurdy Wotila & Porteous, have both been re-appointed to the Attorney Grievance Commission (AGC) by the Michigan Supreme Court.
In an order issued Sept. 28, 2011, Moore was appointed as chair of the AGC for a one-year term. She has served on the AGC since 2006.
Moore received her J.D. from the University of North Carolina School of Law-Chapel Hill. Moore, who teaches Civil Procedure and Professional Responsibility, was formerly a partner and shareholder of Southfield, Mich.-based Moore Vestrand & Pozehl, P.C. (later Moore & Pozehl, P.C.) where she concentrated her practice in the area of legal ethics, including attorney disciplinary and legal malpractice defense. She also practiced criminal defense in the juvenile and district courts.
Moore previously served as staff counsel for the AGC, worked as an in-house warranty counsel for Chrysler Corporation, assistant district attorney in Durham County, N.C. and was an associate attorney with Michaux & Michaux, in Durham. She is a member of a character and fitness committee of the State Bar of Michigan, has served on the board of directors for the Straker Bar Association, speaks nationally in the area of legal ethics and is deeply involved in community service and active in local and affinity bar associations.
Porteous, from Reed City, Mich., was appointed to serve as vice chair of the AGC, also for a one-year term. He has served on the commission since 2007. Porteous, who graduated from Cooley in 1977, also serves as a member of the board of trustees of the Michigan State University College of Law and is the lead director on the board of Huntington Bancshares Inc. of Columbus, Ohio.
In addition, he is a member of the board of directors of Jackson National Life Insurance Company of New York and the Michigan 4-H Foundations. He has served on the boards of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, the Michigan Economic Growth Authority, the Michigan Strategic Fund, the Michigan Chamber of Commerce and the Alliance for Health in Grand Rapids. In 1998, Porteous was elected to the board of trustees of Michigan State University and served as chair from 2003 to 2006.
"The AGC is the ethical watchdog for the legal profession. As a school devoted to the ethical practice of law and service to the bar and community, we at Cooley take great pride in the Court's appointment of both a Cooley dean and one of its grads to the two top positions on the Commission," said Joan Vestrand, associate dean and professor of Cooley's Ann Arbor campus. "Both Dean Moore and Mr. Porteous are fine people with unfaltering character and will serve the commission well in their new positions."
The AGC, which was established in 1978 by order of the Michigan Supreme Court, investigates and prosecutes attorney misconduct cases. The commission is made up of nine members who serve voluntarily; six of the members are attorneys. The AGC also employs a staff that includes attorneys and investigators.
In addition to Moore and Porteous, 1983 Cooley Graduate Barbara Smith also serves on the AGC. She was appointed to a three-year term in 2010. Smith owns her own practice, Law Offices of Barbara B. Smith, located in Bloomfield Hills.
About Thomas M. Cooley Law School:
Thomas M. Cooley Law School is the largest law school in the nation. Founded in 1972, the private, nonprofit law school operates its Juris Doctor program, Joint Degree programs, and Master of Laws programs across Michigan in Lansing, Auburn Hills, Grand Rapids and Ann Arbor. Cooley recently announced a new Tampa Bay, Florida-area campus, with courses beginning in May 2012. Cooley has more than 15,000 graduates across the nation and worldwide and offers enrollment three times a year in January, May and September. Cooley is an independent law school, accredited by the American Bar Association and the Higher Learning Commission. Additional information can be found at cooley.edu.