American Society of Employers (ASE) Releases Preliminary Results to its Drug Testing and Marijuana Legalization Survey – Employers are Confident in Responding to New Marijuana Law

Media Contact: Heather Nezich, Communications Manager, ASE, 248.223.8040,

Livonia, Mich. —November 26, 2018 — The American Society of Employers (ASE), one of the nation’s oldest and largest employer associations, has released a new survey around the legalization of Marijuana in Michigan – its Drug Testing and Marijuana Legalization Survey. The survey results were released by ASE President & CEO, Mary E. Corrado.

“ASE has reacted swiftly to this new law with this survey as well as several briefings for our members,” stated Corrado. “We don’t expect employers to make any sweeping changes to their drug policies and our preliminary results confirm that.”

Michigan is the first Midwestern state to legalize the use of recreational marijuana by a vote of 56% to 44%. What does that mean for Michigan employers? The preliminary data from ASE’s Drug Testing and Marijuana Legalization Survey provides insight into employers’ first thoughts on where their policies and practices currently stand and what changes, if any, they are considering.

183 organizations from across Michigan have participated in ASE’s Drug Testing and Marijuana Legalization Survey. 66% of these organizations are located in the metro Detroit region. 90% of the organizations that responded have 1-500 employees, and nearly 66% of the respondents are classified as manufacturers.

68% of employers have confidence that their organizations’ policies will be able to successfully address their employees’ marijuana usage. Additional insights include:

15% of employers will likely change their policies, while 51% of employers will not.
Of those contemplating change, 42% will remove marijuana testing from their policies altogether, and 31% will ignore any positive marijuana results.
Similar to the stance taken with drug testing policies, half of surveyed employers will not consider making changes to their workplace drug or substance abuse polices/practices. 36% remain unsure, and only 14% will consider making a change.
Although the Michigan Regulation and Taxation of Marihuana Act has triggered much interest amongst businesses in Michigan, employers feel confident that their current policies and practices are equipped to handle this new law. “ASE recommends that employers treat marijuana similar to how they treat the use of alcohol amongst employees. Any substance abuse policies should refer to working while under the influence of marijuana, since it will now be a legal substance similar to alcohol,” stated Mary E. Corrado, ASE President & CEO. “We don’t advise employers to alter their current polices at this time.”

Some additional points to consider:

Workers’ Compensation – Employers will have to consider the impact that their drug testing policies may have on Workers’ Compensation premiums. The removal of marijuana testing could lead to hesitation from the carrier to provide the best rates. This will most certainly lead to higher premiums.
Medical Review Officer – When conducting a drug test, results should be certified by a Medical Review Officer who will analyze and validate the results.
Safety Sensitive Positions – If an employee is hired into a safety sensitive position, it would be beneficial to continue drug testing, including marijuana.

About the American Society of Employers (ASE) – a Centennial Organization

The American Society of Employers (ASE) is a not-for-profit trade association providing people-management information and services to Michigan employers for over 115 years. Since 1902, member organizations have relied on ASE to be their single, cost-effective source for information and support, helping to grow their bottom line by enhancing the effectiveness of their people. Learn more about ASE at

Butzel Long attorneys named to DBusiness magazine’s Top Lawyers in metro Detroit 2019

DETROIT, Mich. – Forty-two Butzel Long attorneys have been named Top Lawyers in metro Detroit 2019 by DBusiness magazine. The list appears in the November/December 2018 edition. The attorneys and their practice areas are listed below:

Ann Arbor office

— Jennifer A. Dukarski
Copyright Law

— Mark W. Jane
Employee Benefits Law

— Lynn F. McGuire
Employee Benefits Law

— Mark T. Nelson
Litigation – Labor Employment Benefits

— Claudia Rast
Information Technology Law
Litigation – Intellectual Property

— Angela Emmerling Shapiro
Information Management & Discovery Law

Bloomfield Hills office

— Mark E. Crane
Family Law

— Carey A. DeWitt
Labor and Employment Law
Trade Secrets

— Debra A. Geroux
Health Care Law

— Beth S. Gotthelf
Environmental Law

— D. Stewart Green
Real Estate Law

— Robert A. Hudson
Corporate Law
International Trade Law

— Susan L. Johnson
Environmental Law

— Sheldon H. Klein
Antitrust Law
Litigation – Antitrust

— Max J. Newman
Bankruptcy and Creditor /Debtor Rights Law

— Thomas Radom
Bankruptcy and Creditor/Debtor Rights Law

— Joseph E. Richotte
Appellate Law

— Craig S. Schwartz
Labor and Employment Law

— Robert H. Schwartz
Health Care Law
Mergers and Acquisitions Law

— Thomas L. Shaevsky
Employee Benefits Law

— Daniel B. Tukel
Labor and Employment Law

Detroit office

— Linda J. Armstrong
Immigration Law

— James C. Bruno
Corporate Law
International Trade Law
Mergers and Acquisitions Law

— George B. Donnini
White –Collar Criminal Defense

— Arthur Dudley, II
Corporate Law
Mergers & Acquisitions Law
Securities Law

— David F. DuMouchel
Professional Malpractice Law
White-Collar Criminal Defense

— Eric J. Flessland
Construction Law
Litigation – Construction

— Bernard J. Fuhs
Franchise Law
Trade Secrets

— John P. Hancock
Employee Benefits Law
Litigation – Labor and Employment Benefits

— Justin G. Klimko
Corporate Law
Mergers & Acquisitions Law
Securities Law

— Phillip C. Korovesis
Litigation – Commercial

— Mark R. Lezotte
Health Care Law
Nonprofit/Charities Law

— Clara DeMatteis Mager
Immigration Law

— Paul M. Mersino
Trade Secrets

— Donald B. Miller
Labor and Employment Law
Product Liability

— Reginald A. Pacis
Immigration Law

— James S. Rosenfeld
Labor and Employment Law
Litigation – Labor Employment Benefits

— Bruce L. Sendek
Litigation – Antitrust
Litigation – Commercial

— Ivonne M. Soler
Family Law

— Nicholas J. Stasevich
Corporate Law
International Trade Law

— James E. Wynne
Product Liability

Lansing office

— James J. Urban
Litigation – Construction

For the list, DBusiness magazine polled 19,000 attorneys in Wayne, Oakland, Macomb, Washtenaw and Livingston counties among 50 legal specialties.

About Butzel Long

Butzel Long is one of the leading law firms in Michigan and the United States. It was founded in Detroit in 1854 and has provided trusted client service for more than 160 years. Butzel’s full-service law firm offices are located in Detroit, Bloomfield Hills, Lansing and Ann Arbor, Mich.; New York, NY; and, Washington, D.C., as well as alliance offices in Beijing and Shanghai. It is an active member of Lex Mundi, a global association of 160 independent law firms. Learn more by visiting or follow Butzel Long on Twitter:

Katherine M. Gehl

Katherine Gehl is a business leader, author, and speaker. She was president and CEO of Gehl Foods, a $250 million high-tech food manufacturing company before selling the company in 2015 to focus her career on political reform.

Gehl’s career includes roles in the private and public sectors including at Oracle Corporation, Bernstein Investment Research and Management, Mayor Richard M. Daley’s Office at the City of Chicago, and Chicago Public Schools. Most recently, she co-authored with Michael Porter Why Competition in the Politics Industry Is Failing America: A strategy for reinvigorating our democracy which reveals their findings and analysis on innovation to America’s divided political system.

In 2018, Gehl co-founded Democracy Found, a Wisconsin-based initiative mobilizing a bipartisan group of leaders to implement electoral innovations in Wisconsin. Gehl graduated from the University of Notre Dame and earned a master’s degree from Catholic University.

Jim Fitterling

Jim Fitterling is the chief executive officer of Dow, a global material science company with 2018 sales of $49 billion.

Fitterling was named chief executive officer-elect of Dow in March 2018, prior to becoming CEO in July 2018. Before that he served as president and chief operating officer of Dow. From September 2017 through March 2019, he also served as chief operating officer for the Materials Science Division of DowDuPont, which separated from Dow in April 2019.

During his 35-year career at Dow, Fitterling has held leadership positions in many of the company’s business units, in corporate development, and in business operations. In addition, he served as the business lead in Dow’s launch of its next-generation sustainability goals. At his direction, in January 2019, Dow became a founding member of the Alliance to End Plastic Waste, an initiative to accelerate efforts to drive innovation, provide much-needed resources, and take decisive action to put an end to plastic waste in the environment.

Nolan Finley

Nolan Finley is editorial page editor of The Detroit News, where he directs the expression of the newspaper’s editorial position on various national and local issues and writes a column in the Sunday newspaper. Prior to that, Finley was the newspaper’s deputy managing editor, directing the newsroom. He previously served as business editor, and in various editing positions on the city, state and metro desks. Finley also co-hosts the “MiWeek” show on Detroit Public Television and often appears on “Flashpoint” on WDIV. In 2012, Finley was inducted into the Michigan Journalism Hall of Fame.

Clayton & McKervey named a Top Workplace by the Detroit Free Press for 8th consecutive year

Southfield, Mich.—Nov. 19, 2018—Clayton & McKervey, an international certified public accounting and business advisory firm located in metro Detroit, is pleased to announce it has been awarded a 2018 Top Workplaces honor by the Detroit Free Press. It is the eighth ear Clayton & McKervey has been included on the Detroit Free Press list, which ranks the best places to work in Michigan.

“The Detroit Free Press Top Workplaces award is very important recognition for our firm and we are thrilled with our longevity on the list,” Clayton & McKervey President Robert Dutkiewicz said. “Attracting and retaining high achieving, happy staff is critical to our success. Public accounting is a competitive field for talent, and our client service efforts depend on staff that view Clayton & McKervey as a positive place to work and build a long-term career.”

The Top Workplaces list is based solely on employee feedback gathered through a third-party survey administered by research partner Energage, LLC. The survey gathers employee responses and measures organizational health in four categories:
1. Alignment – where the company is headed; its values; cooperation
2. Effectiveness – doing things well; sharing different viewpoints; encouraging new ideas
3. Connection – employees feel appreciated; their work is meaningful
4. My Manager – cares about concerns; helps employees learn and grow.

The survey also asks about employee engagement, where Clayton & McKervey scored above the CPA profession average, confidence in company leadership and general questions about pay, benefits, flexibility and training.

Clayton & McKervey promotes a collegial and responsive work environment. The firm, an industry leader in promoting women to partnership and other roles of high-level responsibility, uses its Women’s Network program to engage female leadership talent with a four-tier approach that increases access to role models; improves marketing opportunities; provides education and support for career advancement; and enhances the culture of the firm to ensure the successful retention and recruitment of women.

In addition, Clayton & McKervey’s young leadership training program taps employees before they are managers and turns them into the firm’s leaders of tomorrow through technical training and leadership conferences, off-site learning, daily mentoring and in-house coaching, and community involvement. The firm also emphasizes the importance of making time to have fun and connect outside of working hours to foster visible, deeper levels of engagement with each other and the community.

To see all Top Workplace rankings, click here.

About Clayton & McKervey
Clayton & McKervey is a full-service certified public accounting and business advisory firm helping closely held businesses compete in the global marketplace. The firm is headquartered in metro Detroit and services clients throughout the world. To learn more, visit


’Tis the season…for personal injury claims? As office holiday parties get more adventurous, risk of harm to employees rises

Detroit –Nov. 20, 2018– In recent years, holiday parties have caused increased anxiety for many employers trying to share seasonal joy and good tidings with their employees while putting safeguards in place to avoid sexual harassment claims and drinking and driving infractions and injuries. That’s why Deborah Brouwer, a partner with Detroit-based labor and employment law firm Nemeth Law, says it’s curious to note a national trend of employers hosting holiday parties at potentially risky venues and, in at least one case, offering controversial and sometimes downright dangerous holiday gifts.

“A Wisconsin employer recently gave its employees a $500 gift certificate valid towards the purchase of a firearm,” Brouwer said. “Those not interested could substitute the gift card for a different purchase, but the majority said they plan to use the gift certificate for its intended purpose. This practice could put employers directly in harms’ way from a legal standpoint should the employee injure herself or another individual with the weapon, regardless of whether such an incident occurs in the workplace.”

Brouwer added that holiday parties hosted at the newly popular axe-throwing establishments pose similar risks.

“Employers may be inviting trouble by holding their holiday gatherings at any venue where a weapon is involved – and axe throwing, for example, involves weaponry regardless of how novel and safe it may be positioned as a corporate experience,” Brouwer said. “Axe throwing, racing venues and other recreational activities that pose inherent risk of harm should not be hosted by employers in general, and certainly not when alcohol is served.”

Brouwer says employer holiday party guidelines are generally consistent each year, and that this year’s mention of safe venues is an anomaly.

“We are adding the strong suggestion of hosting parties in a safe place when advising employers on holiday party best practices this year,” Brouwer said. “There are still several guidelines for parties that remain constant from year to year.”

Brouwer offers the following considerations:

• Senior management and HR representatives from the organization should attend the party, follow all company policies and set an example for the organization in terms of appropriate behavior.

• The company’s sexual harassment policy should be reviewed prior to the party – and enforced on the spot if questionable behavior becomes evident.

• Remind employees that while the holiday party is meant to celebrate the season and/or their contributions from the past year, the event is still a business function and inappropriate behavior may result in discipline, including termination.

• Ditto for party pictures and social media party posts. Remind staff in advance of the celebration that the company’s social media policy still applies at the event, and that actions will be taken against those who don’t follow the spirit of the policy.

• If alcohol is served and employees (including interns) under the age of 21 will be present, be sure to implement and follow a “We ID” policy.

• For crowd control and better monitoring of party activities, consider limiting parties to employees rather than adding clients and vendors.

• Consider moving celebratory events to Monday or Tuesday evenings rather than Thursday or Friday evenings.

• Invite all employees to the party, but make it clear that attendance is voluntary. Not everyone celebrates the holidays and employees should not feel pressured to attend.

• Don’t drink and drive should be the mantra. If possible, arrange for transportation in advance for employees who may not be able to drive. Shuttles and car services are an excellent option, but can be costly. Consider alternatives, including offering to reimburse employees for cab fares or ride-hailing services.

If your workplace has no definite holiday plans this year – and the aforementioned guidelines haven’t scared you off – Brouwer suggests holding a less formal, alcohol-free breakfast or lunch event on-site and then closing the office early.

“Less formal parties can be a two for one; staff get to celebrate the season with colleagues while also getting paid time off during the busy holiday season – and employers avoid the pitfalls of events where alcohol is served – or weapons are thrown,” Brouwer said.

About Nemeth Law, P.C.
Nemeth Law specializes in arbitration, mediation, workplace investigations, employment litigation, traditional labor law and management consultation/training for private and public sector employers. It is the largest woman-owned law firm in Michigan to exclusively represent management in the prevention, resolution and litigation of labor and employment disputes.

The Parade Company Named Member of the Month: Honoring Art Van’s Legacy, Contribution to City

In recognition of its commemoration of Art Van Elslander, a longstanding icon in the Detroit community, the Detroit Regional Chamber has chosen The Parade Company as the Member of the Month for November. The Member of the Month is awarded to Chamber members that are working to uplift Southeast Michigan.

The Parade Company is honoring the memory of Van Elslander, who passed away earlier this year, during the 2018 America’s Thanksgiving Parade® presented by Art Van. Van Elslander’s company, Art Van Furniture was the primary benefactor of The Parade for nearly 30 years. He is often credited with saving the Parade since underwriting a $200,000 check when The Parade was struggling financially.

The Parade Company will honor Van Elslander with the 2018 theme, “Art!! Heart & Soul!”

For nearly 100 years, America’s Thanksgiving Parade® presented by Art Van has been a one-of-a-kind spectacle, bringing pride and joy to the Motor City. Since its founding in 1924, The Parade has grown to include more than 60 floats, balloons, equestrian units, marching bands, the famous papier-mache heads and the Distinguished Clown Corps and has always served as a positive reminder of what the city has to offer. The Grand Marshal for the 2018 Parade is famed NFL sportscaster Jim Nantz. The Parade will include classic floats from partners such as Art Van Furniture, Ford Motor Company, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Strategic Staffing Solutions, The Detroit Jazz Festival, and Huntington Bank as well as new floats from Wayne State University, Lear Corporation, Children’s Hospital of Michigan, Henry Ford Health Systems, Delta Dental of Michigan and The Skillman Foundation and more.

The Parade kicks off from the corner of Kirby and Woodward Avenue at 8:45 a.m. on Thanksgiving morning with the live broadcast on WDIV Local 4 at 10 a.m. and online at

There will also be a live play-by-play of the parade from 10 a.m. to noon on 104.3 WOMC

To learn more, visit The Parade Company’s website.

Darienne Driver Hudson

Darienne Driver Hudson has been president and CEO of United Way for Southeastern Michigan since July 2018. She led the Milwaukee Public Schools (MPS) as superintendent from October 2014 to May 2018.

She served as chair of the Council of Great City Schools, a policy-making body of the 70 largest urban school districts in the country committed to improving academic achievement and organizational effectiveness. Prior to her role as superintendent, Driver Hudson was appointed MPS’ first chief innovation officer. In that role, she was successful in narrowing the achievement gap in MPS’ Commitment Schools.

Driver Hudson served as deputy chief of empowerment schools for the School District of Philadelphia. Prior to that role, she served as coordinator of strategic management and accountability and special assistant to the superintendent in Clayton County Public Schools in Georgia. She began her career as an elementary school teacher in Detroit Public Schools. She serves on the Board of Overseers for Harvard University.

Driver Hudson’s academic achievements include a doctorate degree from Harvard University, where she completed an urban superintendents’ program. She also earned a master’s degrees in education from Harvard University and in curriculum development from the University of Michigan, and an undergraduate degree from Spelman College in child development.

Matthew Dowd

Matthew Dowd is the chief political analyst for ABC News, a best-selling author, and a campaign strategist for more than 100 campaigns. In his position with ABC News, he appears on “This Week,” “Good Morning America,” and “Nightline.” He is a regular contributor to leading national publications and is also the author of the 2017 book “A New Way: Embracing the Paradox as We Lead and Serve,” which examines the role of leadership in disruptive times. In addition, Dowd is the co-author of the New York Times best-seller “Applebee’s America: How Successful Political, Business, and Religious Leaders Connect with the New American Community,” which examines the tactics used to thrive in an era of immense change.

Dowd previously created the online community “Listen.To.Us.,” which brings like-minded individuals together to discuss politics and government. His political work includes serving as the chief strategist for two winning reelection efforts—Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s 2006 campaign and President George W. Bush’s second White House bid. Dowd also provided strategic advice to Former President Barack Obama, Bono at the One Campaign, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Prior to his work for President Bush, Dowd worked for 25 years for Democratic candidates around the country, including Senator Lloyd Bentsen and former Texas Lieutenant Governor Bob Bullock.

Dowd has taught seminars on campaigns and communication at Stanford, Harvard, Yale, and the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin. He is currently a senior fellow at the University of Chicago and the University of Southern California.

Over the last 20 years, he has been an active entrepreneur, founding three highly successful companies including Vianovo and Public Strategies. He recently founded Paradox Capital, a social impact venture fund which is focused on for-profit social good companies.