Billee Lightvoet-Ward ’94

Billee has joined the Detroit-based law firm Dickinson Wright PLLC. She specializes in health care law, corporate law, and commercial transactions. Previously with the Miller Canfield law firm, Billee represents health care providers, medical device manufacturers and other health care-related entities in corporate and transactional matters. Billee earned her bachelor’s degree in political science and studied abroad in Caceres, Spain. She earned her law degree from DePaul University College of Law. A member of the American Health Lawyers Association, the American Bar Association, the State Bar of Michigan and the Kalamazoo County Bar Association, she has been recognized by her peers as a Michigan Super Lawyers “Rising Star” in health care law.

Ryan Plecha ’04

Ryan has been named a partner at the law firm Lippitt O’Keefe Gornbein (Birmingham, Mich.). Last year he was recognized as a “Super Lawyer Rising Star” and an “Up and Coming Lawyer” by Michigan Lawyers Weekly. Ryan focuses his practice on all aspects of both civil and complex commercial litigation, and he plans to further expand his practice in the areas of bankruptcy and class actions. At K he earned his bachelor’s degree in psychology. He served as a judicial intern for the Honorable Gerald E. Rosen ’73, Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. Ryan earned his J.D. from the Thomas M. Cooley Law School.

Patrick SAGE ’86

Patrick has joined the advisory committee of Jivana Biotechnology, Inc., a Chicago-based company that develops RNA interference treatments for a wide range of cancers. Patrick is a registered patent attorney since 1993 and founder of Kalamazoo, Mich.-based Hueschen & SAGE, PLLC, which specializes in advising innovator pharmaceutical, dermatological and fine chemical companies in portfolio development, prosecution, management, agency registration, enforcement and partnering. Patrick earned his J.D. at Loyola University (Chicago). At K he majored in biology and studied abroad in Muenster, Germany. He began his career as a biochemist with The Upjohn Company, conducting pharmacological research on potential treatments for Alzheimer’s disease.

John Lewis ’93

John is an attorney at Tucker Ellis LLP (Cleveland, Ohio). He was selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America 2015. John specializes in commercial litigation. The Best Lawyers lists are based on peer review surveys. John earned his B.A. in political science at K and studied abroad in Hannover, Germany. He earned his law degree from Duquesne University.

Myra Selby ’77

Myra was keynote speaker at Indiana University Bloomington’s 2015 Martin Luther King Jr. Day Celebration Leadership Breakfast. Myra was the first woman and the first African American to serve on the Indiana Supreme Court. She currently is in private practice with the law firm Ice Miller in Indianapolis. In 1999, the Indiana Supreme Court appointed her to chair its Commission on Race and Gender Fairness. She continues as a current member. At K she majored in psychology and studied abroad in Sierra Leone. She earned her J.D. from the University of Michigan School of Law.

Ryan Plecha ’04

Ryan was named to the Crain’s Detroit Business list of “40 Under 40” for 2015, an annual citation of 40 successful professionals and entrepreneurs under the age of 40 in Southeast Michigan. Ryan is a partner at the Birmingham law firm of Lippitt O’Keefe Gornbein. He played a key role in his firm’s representation of the Retired Detroit Police and Fire Fighters Association and the Detroit Retired City Employees Association during Detroit’s recent bankruptcy proceedings. He also has defended two major class action suits, handled a multi-million-dollar corporate purchase agreement, and represented a major auto maker in a multi-million-dollar supplier dispute. He serves as local counsel for a number of the nation’s top law firms. Ryan has been honored by many groups and publications, and he is the 2015 recipient of the Detroit Metropolitan Bar Association’s Barristers President’s Award. At K, Ryan majored in psychology. He earned his law degree from the Thomas M. Cooley Law School.

Christian Grostic ’01

hristianGrosticChristian has been named a partner of the Cleveland, Ohio, law firm Kushner & Hamed Co., LPA, which is now Kushner, Hamed & Grostic Co., LPA. Chris practices civil and white-collar criminal litigation and appeals, appearing in the U.S. Supreme Court, the U.S. Court of Appeals and trial courts in a variety of complex litigation. He is also an adjunct professor at Case Western University School of Law and has been recognized as a Rising Star by Ohio Super Lawyers in the areas of business litigation, white-collar criminal defense and appeals.

David Thoms ’70

David was selected for inclusion in the 21st edition of the Best Lawyers in America. His expertise in law pertaining to trusts, estates, charities, and taxes was cited. Best Lawyers also named him “Lawyer of the Year” (2014-15) for the Detroit area in the practice of charities law. Only a single lawyer in each practice area in each community is so honored. David majored in history at K and studied abroad in Caen, France.

David Clowers ’64

David read his poetry for the Dickinson Poetry Series last month at Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Door County (Wisconsin). David’s career path has been a spiral. He earned degrees in English (B.A. Kalamazoo College; M.A. University of Michigan) and then taught British and American literature at Drake University for three years. He earned his law degree from the University of Chicago and made a three-decade career change into the practice of law. All the while he continued to write poetry. When he moved to Door County (2001) he started writing more seriously, eventually achieving his goal of writing one poem a day. For the past six years he has taught poetry for the county’s Learning in Retirement Program. He has published two chapbooks: Shedding My Three Piece Birthday Suit and Doggysatva Love and Other Possible Illusions.