Plunkett Cooney Partner to Moderate ABA Panel on Land Use

Partner Mary Massaron of Plunkett Cooney, one of the Midwest’s oldest and largest law firms, will moderate a panel of guest speakers at the American Bar Association’s (ABA) 32nd Annual Land Use Institute in downtown Detroit.

Hosted by the ABA’s Section of State and Local Government Law, the Annual Land Use Institute program will take place April 19 and 20 at the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law. On April 20, Massaron will serve as moderator of “The Land Use Issues Impacting the Fall and Rise of Downtown Detroit” discussion. The panelists include Michael McLauchlan, Vice President for Government Relations of Ilitch Holdings (Detroit); Jared Fleischer, Vice President of Government Relations at Quicken Loans (Detroit); and Maurice D. Cox, Director, Planning & Development Department (Detroit).

Following the discussion, a response panel will be held, featuring former Detroit Mayor Dennis W. Archer and former Miami Beach, Florida Mayor Neisen Kasdin. During this plenary session, the panel will discuss the land use issues and financial tolls that have impacted the city’s fall and rise, and the response panel will engage the presenters with their questions and comments.

The Annual Land Use Institute program is designed to benefit attorneys, professional planners, real estate professionals and government officials involved in land use planning, zoning, permitting, property development, conservation and environmental protection, and related litigation. The program not only addresses and analyzes the government’s efforts to manage land use and development, but it also presents the key issues faced by property owners and developers in obtaining necessary governmental approvals.

Massaron, who previously served as a law clerk to Michigan Supreme Court Associate Justice Patricia J. Boyle Massaron, practices in Plunkett Cooney’s Bloomfield Hills office and has handled literally hundreds of appeals in state and federal appellate courts, including appearances before the Michigan Supreme Court, the Indiana Supreme Court, and the Ohio Supreme Court. She has handled over one hundred cases in the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, and she appeared in the Second, Third and Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Among the significant land use and property development cases that Massaron has handled over the years is Hathcock v County of Wayne, which resulted in a decision overturning decades of precedent and establishing a new test for the government’s right to take private property.

The Best Lawyers in America® (Copyright 2017 by Woodward/White, Inc., of Aiken, S.C.) has honored Massaron with its “Best Lawyer” title for 12 consecutive years. Michigan Super Lawyers magazine has also honored Massaron for 13 consecutive years, including inclusion among its top 100 attorneys and top 50 women lawyers in Michigan. Her other significant honors include membership in the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers and designation by Michigan Lawyers Weekly as a 2008 “Lawyer of the Year.”

Massaron served as President of the DRI – The Voice of the Defense Bar from 2012 to 2013. She is past chair of the Appellate Practice Section of the State Bar of Michigan, DRI’s Appellate Advocacy Committee, and the American Bar Association’s (ABA) Council of Appellate Lawyers, a division of the Appellate Judges Conference. Massaron also co-chairs the Michigan Appellate Bench Bar Conference Foundation, an organization of Michigan appellate judges and lawyers.

Massaron graduated summa cum laude from Wayne State University Law School in 1990, receiving numerous academic accolades. She received her undergraduate degree, summa cum laude, from Marygrove College in 1982.


Established in 1913, Plunkett Cooney is a leading provider of transactional and litigation services to clients in the private and public sectors. The firm employs approximately 140 attorneys in 11 offices located in Ohio, Illinois, Indiana and Michigan. Plunkett Cooney has achieved the highest rating (AV) awarded by Martindale-Hubbell, an international directory of law firms, and it has been ranked as one of the 2018 “Best Law Firms” in the nation by U.S. World News – Best Lawyers® .

For more information about Plunkett Cooney Mary Massaron moderating the upcoming ABA land use presentation, contact the firm’s Director of Marketing and Business Development John Cornwell at (248) 901-4008 or jcornwell@plunkettcooney.com