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Butzel Long attorney Geaneen M. Arends elected to firm’s Board of Directors; Attorney is the first person of color elected to serve in this role

DETROIT, Mich. – Butzel Long’s newly elected Board member and Vice President, Geaneen M. Arends, is the first person of color and third woman to serve in this law firm leadership role in the firm’s 167 year history.

Last October, Arends, a shareholder, was named Practice Department Chair for the firm’s Corporate and Real Estate Practice Departments. She is responsible for the management and oversight of the firm’s Corporate and Real Estate attorneys who report to her as well as for the strategic goals, budgeting, forecasting, and direction of the practice groups.

“We are very pleased to welcome Geaneen to our Board,” said Justin G. Klimko, President and CEO, Butzel Long. “Her perspective, insights and judgment will be valuable to our deliberations. Her election to the Board is a recognition by her peers of her talent and leadership abilities.”

Based in the firm’s Detroit office, Arends concentrates her practice in mergers and acquisitions, business formation, general business and commercial real estate transactions.

“This is a pivotal moment for me in my career and for Butzel Long,” said Arends. “I am honored to be the first person of color in the firm’s history to be elected to the firm’s Board of Directors.

“As a mother to twin daughters, I strive to be a strong role model and they know their future is limitless,” she added. “I look forward to serving in this important Butzel Long role.”

Arends’ long-time commitment to pro-bono work and community service is well-known. She serves as First Vice-Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Detroit Historical Society (Detroit Historical Museum and Dossin Great Lakes Museum) and is a Trustee of the Detroit Educational Television Foundation/Detroit Public Television (Detroit PBS). She also serves on the Steering Committee for the Detroit Symphony Orchestra’s Classical Roots Celebration.

Arends is a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation, serves on the Real Estate Advisory Board for the Institute of Continuing Legal Education, and is an alumna of Leadership Detroit, Class XXVII. She also is the Chair of Butzel Long’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee.

Arends is a graduate of Michigan State University (B.A., History, 1994) and Boston College Law School (J.D., 1998). She is admitted to the State Bar of Michigan and the United States District Court of the Eastern District of Michigan.

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 offices are located in Detroit, Bloomfield Hills, Lansing and Ann Arbor, Mich.; New York, NY; and, Washington, D.C., as well as an alliance office in Beijing. 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: