American Bar Association Honors Professor for Contributions to the Legal Field

Gary Bauer

Professor Gary Bauer

The American Bar Association’s (ABA) Solo, Small Firm and General Practice Division awarded WMU-Cooley Law School Professor Gary Bauer with the Solo and Small Firm Trainer Award. The award recognizes attorneys who have made significant contributions to educating lawyers or law students regarding the opportunities and challenges of a solo and small firm practice.

Bauer is a professor at WMU-Cooley Law School’s Lansing campus and has devoted his career to promoting solo and small firm practice, and training law students to plan for a solo or small firm practice. Bauer is a founding member and contributor of the “Solo Institute,” a continuing legal education conference held once a year in Michigan, sponsored by the Institute for Continuing Legal Education (ICLE), and now one of the most heavily attended CLE programs in the state.

Bauer also created the WMU-Cooley class, Solo by Design™, to educate students on managing clients and operating a law firm as a solo practitioner. He recently launched a website and blog,™, to provide law students, recent solo practitioners, and seasoned professionals who wish to go solo, with information and resources to be successful in the legal business.

“Professor Bauer has mentored hundreds of students over decades of teaching,” said Christine Church, WMU-Cooley Law School associate dean. “Because of his influence, WMU-Cooley created a General Practice, Solo and Small Firm concentration for our students.”

Bauer practiced law as a criminal defense attorney before joining WMU-Cooley Law School in 1997. He served in the U.S. Air Force before earning his bachelor’s degree from Purdue University, master’s degree from Central Michigan University, and J.D. from WMU-Cooley Law School.

He will be honored during the 2016 Joint Spring Meeting presented by ABA, GPSolo and Group Legal Services Association May 13 in Key West, Florida.

About Western Michigan University Thomas M. Cooley Law School: Western Michigan University and Thomas M. Cooley Law School affiliated in 2014, combining the status of a nationally-ranked, public, comprehensive research university with the commitment to practical legal education of an independent, non-profit, national law school. WMU-Cooley is accredited by both the American Bar Association and the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association. The law school has provided nearly 20,000 graduates with the practical skills necessary for a seamless transition from academia to the real world, and enrolls classes in January, May, and September at its Lansing, Auburn Hills, and Grand Rapids, Michigan campuses, and its Tampa Bay, Florida campus. WMU and the law school continue to operate as independent institutions with their own governance structure and separate fiduciary responsibilities.



Professor Gary Bauer Honored for Significant Contributions to the Legal Field

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