News

25 October 2017

Wolford and Lubben Elected Managing Members at Miller Johnson

Robert D. Wolford and Craig H. Lubben have been elected Managing Members of Miller Johnson, effective Jan. 1, 2018. Mr. Wolford and Mr. Lubben will oversee management of the firm and lead strategic initiatives to maintain and build value for existing and new clients of the West Michigan-based legal services provider. The firm’s membership unanimously elected the two to their roles at a special meeting of the firm’s membership on Tuesday.

Over the past 10 years, Miller Johnson has seen a 45 percent growth in revenue. Given the significant progress of the firm, management responsibilities will be shared between these two highly-qualified partners with complementary skills and a commitment for continuing to practice law even as they assume their new roles.

Mr. Wolford will be responsible for the client and community facing functions of the firm, including leading client service strategies and marketplace development. Mr. Lubben will be responsible for the business functions of the firm, including chairing the Management Committee and overseeing long-term professional and operational interests. Both Managing Members will sit on the firm’s five-person Management Committee and serve multi-year terms in their respective roles. Mr. Wolford and Mr. Lubben will continue to serve their clients and grow their respective practices in Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo, while looking at opportunities to expand Miller Johnson beyond West Michigan.

“This is a reflection of the growth and forward-looking perspective our firm puts on client service,” said Mr. Wolford.  “We continue to build relationships with the leading companies, organizations, and individuals that rely on expert legal counsel.”

Mr. Lubben added, “The sophistication of providing that counsel requires competencies in management, analytics, technology, communication, and financial matters.  But beyond that, we also place high critical value in the age-old practice of knowing your clients as well as you know yourself.  This model of management will allow us to focus on both aspects of our business equally.”

Mr. Wolford and Mr. Lubben succeed Craig A. Mutch, who has served as Managing Member of Miller Johnson for the past nine years. After 40 years as a practicing labor and employment attorney, he is retiring at the end of the year, coinciding with completing his term as Managing Member. During his tenure as Managing Member, Mr. Mutch has overseen the firm adding new practices, increasing its number of attorneys, and moving to new offices in Grand Rapids at Arena Place and in Kalamazoo at the Radisson Plaza Hotel & Suites.

“I have been honored to serve Miller Johnson’s clients for the past 40 years, including the last nine as the Managing Member,” said Mr. Mutch. “The reality is the responsibilities of the Managing Member are varied and extensive, so passing the torch to my two colleagues to continue the commitment to exceptional service is as easy a task as I’ve had in my time here. I wish them well and know the team at Miller Johnson will prosper along with our valued clients.”

A member of Miller Johnson’s Grand Rapids office since 2001, Mr. Wolford regularly represents buyers and sellers throughout the country in mergers, acquisitions, recapitalizations, reorganizations, private equity investments and other transactions. Recognized for his legal expertise by numerous organizations, he is listed in the “Best Lawyers in America®.” Mr. Wolford is the Secretary/Legal Counsel of The Economic Club of Grand Rapids, and President of East Grand Rapids Public Schools Board of Education.

Joining Miller Johnson in 1981 and based in Kalamazoo, Mr. Lubben’s practice is focused on representing business entities, executives, medical professionals, and other individuals in commercial disputes in state and federal court. During his career, he has received various awards as a top litigator, including being named as Best Lawyers Kalamazoo Litigation – Labor and Employment Lawyer of the Year three times this decade. He was appointed by the Michigan Supreme Court to serve on the Attorney Discipline Board for two consecutive terms and served as the Board’s Vice-Chairperson. Mr. Lubben is the Chair of Calvin College’s Board of Trustees.

“We are grateful to have served under Craig Mutch for nearly a decade and appreciate the opportunity to build upon his legacy at Miller Johnson,” said Mr. Lubben. “His commitment to ‘the team, the team, the team,’ stems from his days playing for the legendary Bo Schembechler at the University of Michigan and is ingrained in our firm’s culture.”

Mr. Wolford added, “It was that commitment to ‘the team’ that resulted in the development of not only our roster of exceptional professionals at Miller Johnson, but also a strong administrative team led by Betsy Raymond, providing clients with peace of mind knowing legal counsel is able to focus all of their attention on the critical matters at hand.”

For more information on Mr. Wolford and Mr. Lubben, visit their bios on the website.

About Miller Johnson

Founded in 1959, Miller Johnson’s attorneys provide legal counsel to businesses and individuals in areas such as business and corporate, litigation, employment and labor, mergers and acquisitions, employee benefits, and estate planning and family law. For more information, follow us on LinkedIn.