Law firm expands into metro Detroit


Frank Mamat. Courtesy Barnes & Thornburg

A law firm with a local presence has extended its footprint to the state’s east side.

Indianapolis-based Barnes & Thornburg, which has a 27-attorney office in downtown Grand Rapids, opened its second office in the state in Southfield, at 3000 Town Center, according to the firm last week.

The firm also hired Frank Mamat, a veteran management-side labor and employment attorney, to be the attorney in charge of the Southfield office.

“Detroit and the surrounding area have experienced an incredible economic re-birth in recent years, due in large part to the development of advanced manufacturing and engineering that supports the automotive industry and other sectors,” said Robert Stead, Barnes & Thornburg’s Grand Rapids managing partner, who will also lead the new office.

“This is an opportune time to expand our presence in Michigan and attract additional talented attorneys who can build sustainable, outcome-driven partnerships with clients.”

Mamat is currently the lone attorney working at the Southfield office. However, Stead said there is another attorney who has accepted an offer and will be starting soon. He also said they are actively looking for more attorneys.

The Southfield office will focus on are legal areas such as labor and employment, corporate, environmental, intellectual property and litigation.

Mamat, who was previously a shareholder at Foster Swift, joined the firm’s labor and employment practice. He focuses on traditional labor law matters, such as counseling on union avoidance and employee strikes, the negotiation of labor contracts and the management of workplace fatality matters. 

“Frank is one of the deans of traditional labor law in Michigan, including being an architect of its ‘right to work’ law, and has represented clients in connection with a wide variety of labor matters,” said Kenneth Yerkes, chair of Barnes & Thornburg’s labor and employment practice. “We’re very pleased to add his deep knowledge, vast experience and business acumen to our skilled team of Michigan labor attorneys.”

He holds a B.A. from the University of Rochester and a J.D. from the Syracuse University College of Law.

There are over 600 attorneys and other legal professionals working at the firm’s multiple locations throughout the country.

“We’ve had tremendous success channeling the resources of a sophisticated national firm when we enter new markets and open entrepreneurial offices,” said Bob Grand, managing partner, Barnes & Thornburg.

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