Alumnus to Lead State Bar

Posted on Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Lawrence P. Nolan (B.A. ’71, English) was sworn in as the State Bar of Michigan’s 82nd president during the organization’s annual meeting, on September 22 in Grand Rapids.

Nolan, who practices law at the firm of Nolan Thomsen & Villas PC, earned his Juris Doctor from WMU-Cooley in 1976 and has been active with the SBM, serving on several committees, and is a member of the General Practice – Solo & Small Firm Section, Law Practice Management & Legal Administrators Section, and Master Lawyers Section.

According to the State Bar of Michigan website, “Nolan will lead an organization of over 45,000 members that works to improve the administration of justice, promotes the legal profession, and builds public understanding of the legal system. He has been involved in State Bar work for more than a decade and has served on many of its committees and groups. He has served on the SBM Board of Commissioners since 2006, and has served as treasurer, secretary, vice president, and president-elect. He has also served on the State Bar of Michigan Representative Assembly.”

He is the third WMU-Cooley graduate to hold the post, following Thomas Rombach who served from 2014-2015, and Charles R. Toy who served from 2009-2010. He currently serves as chair on the WMU-Cooley Law School board, of which he has been a member since 1983.

Nolan, who played hockey for WMU from 1968 -71, is also a founding member, and the captain, of the Legal Eagles Hockey Team.

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Lori A. Buiteweg, who served as State Bar of Michigan President from 2015-2016 passes the gavel to Lawrence Nolan during the bar’s annual meeting in Grand Rapids on Sept. 22. Nolan is the organization’s 82nd president.