Detroit Chapter
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The ACEDS Detroit Chapter is your direct link to the national organization. By joining our Chapter, you not only receive the benefit of both local and national membership, but you gain an entire network of individuals looking to enhance their e-discovery careers.

Through education, training, certification and networking, the Detroit Chapter is helping expand the global reach of ACEDS. Your membership will connect you with e-discovery professionals worldwide who wish to stay abreast of advancements in technology and continuously changing e-discovery trends.

Join our Detroit Chapter today and become a true leader in the e-discovery profession.

ACEDS Membership + Join Detroit Chapter


Please check back soon for details on upcoming ACEDS Detroit Chapter training and networking events.

On Thursday, May 7, 2015, there was a panel discussion on the topic of Technology Assisted Review”. Our panelists include Jay Yelton, a partner with Warner Norcross & Judd LLP and Constantine Pappas, from kCura. They discussed the growing acceptance in the courts of technology assisted review (TAR), when and how to determine when TAR is appropriate for a case, and addressed some common technical questions regarding TAR.

On March 19, 2015, Kate Mortensen, a Director of Communications and Client Development with Xact Data Discovery presented eDiscovery Best Practices: The Crossroads of Legal Holds, Cooperation and Proportionality. This presentation introduced a lawyer-centric model on eDiscovery Best Practices that outlined the concerns for attorneys at each stage of the eDiscovery life cycle. This session focused on Litigation Readiness, Preservation Activities and Cooperation. Significant time was devoted to an attorney’s ethical duties regarding eDiscovery competence. Additionally, preservation considerations with a focus on litigation hold protocols and the potential risks for failing to preserve evidence were discussed. The concepts of cooperation, communication and proportionality was discussed throughout the presentation.

Detroit Chapter Kick-Off Meeting
Thursday, January 22, 2015 | Kelly Services HQ in Troy, MI

The ACEDS Detroit Chapter had an educational lunch and learn to kick-off the new Chapter. The topic was “Surviving the Next Cyber-Attack”. Robert C. Ludolph, of counsel to Pepper Hamilton LLP and Garry A. Pate, a Director in the Digital Forensics and E-Discovery practice at Stout Risius Ross, discussed the current data breach landscape, digital forensics, and strategies/methodologies to survive the next cyber-attack. The event was well attended by attorneys, paralegals, litigation support managers and vendors from the Detroit and Grand Rapids, MI areas.

July 16, 2015

ACEDS – Detroit Chapter presented Joe Looby’s exclusive documentary, “The Decade of Discovery“, which tells of a watershed moment in our history, where the explosive rise of information technology threatened some of our most basic American values. The film recounts how a handful of lawyers, judges, and scholars recognized the looming threat, and how they took the first major systematic steps to rein it in.

Immediately following the 60-minute film viewing, there was a spirited panel discussion regarding ediscovery challenges. The esteemed panelists included

  • The Honorable Magistrate Judge Elizabeth Stafford, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Michigan
  • Natalie Yaw, Assistant General Counsel at Meridian Health
  • Scott Petz, Member at Dickinson Wright
  • Garry Pate, Director in the Digital Forensics Practice at Stout Risius Ross
  • Doug Kaminski will moderate this panel discussion. Doug is a Senior Director at Huron Legal.

Wine, beer and appetizers was served following the panel discussion. This event was hosted by Dickinson Wright at their downtown Detroit offices, and the event was sponsored by Dickinson Wright; Litigation Services; and Recommind.

September 16, 2015

The Detroit ACEDS Chapter and Detroit ILTA Chapter hosted a charity “Fun”draiser Pub Crawl. The turn-out to this social networking event was wonderful and everyone had a great time. More importantly, this event raised $1,520.00; all of which will be donated to the Grace Centers of Hope.

Grace Centers of Hope is a committed community of believers, reaching out to those individuals whose lives have been damaged by addictions and self-destructive behavior. Through love and accountability, Grace Centers of Hope help residents to refocus their lives as productive members of society. There are 86,189 homeless persons in Michigan. The Detroit Metro area (Wayne, Oakland, Macomb and Monroe counties) has 34,642 homeless people, including 5,536 children in families and 192 unaccompanied minors. This area has the highest homeless population in the state of Michigan. Grace Centers of Hope serves an average of 100,000 meals to the homeless community each year. On any given night, Grace Centers of Hope provides transitional and emergency shelter to 150-200 men, women and children. Since Grace Centers of Hope does not take any government assistance, they rely solely on corporate and private donors to maintain their $5.7 million yearly budget.

Thank you the generous support from our sponsors for this event: 97.1 The Ticket; Computing Source; Epiq; Exterro; Huron Consulting; Iris, kCura; Kelly Legal Services; Lexis; Recommind; SRR; and Symantec.

December 16, 2015

The Detroit Chapters of ACEDS, ILTA, State Bar of Michigan Paralegal Section and the Great Lakes Paralegal Association co-hosted for a Holiday Social at Maggiano’s in Troy, Michigan. There cost of admission was a pair of mittens – all of which were donated to Mittens for Detroit. Over 60 legal professionals attended this holiday networking event where appetizers and cocktails were made available. Mittens for Detroit is a charity whose sole purpose is to collect, purchase, and distribute new, unused mittens and gloves to children and adults in need in Detroit.

Thank you to our generous sponsors for supporting this event: Controle; Dickinson Wright; Epiq; Exterro;Great Lakes Paralegal Association; Huron Consulting; Kelly Law Registry; Linguistic Arete; SMB Paralegal Section; SRR; Thompson Reuters; US Legal; and Xact.

Barbara Bennett, CEDS | President
Barbara has more than 30 years of experience working in the legal industry and has worked specifically in the EDiscovery area for the last 12 years. Barbara currently works for the world’s seventh largest automobile manufacturer in their IT Legal department where she helps manage the EDiscovery litigation software platform. Barbara also works with legal counsel advises regarding document review workflow best practices, searching protocols and client productions. Barbara holds the CEDS certification from the Association of Certified EDiscovery Specialists, and is also a Relativity Certified Administrator. Being passionate regarding the education surrounding EDiscovery best practices, Barbara participates on the ACEDS’ advisory board and is the current President of the ACEDS Detroit, Inc. chapter.

Penny Jones | Secretary
Penny Jones serves as a litigation support specialist at the Harness Dickey law firm, where she is a Relativity Administrator. A 20-year veteran of the legal industry, Ms. Jones has presented evidence in more than 25 trials at the state and federal levels.

Ellen Kain | Co-Vice President
Ellen Kain is a Relativity Administrator and Project Manager at Dykema Gossett PLLC. There she provides in-house electronic data processing, manages productions and offers trial assistance.

Beth Niepokuj | Co-Vice President
Beth Niepokuj has served as a litigation support manager since 2007 at Plunkett Cooney since, where she is responsible for all aspects of the firm’s litigation support technology, e-discovery operations and document review center management. A Certified E-Discovery Specialist, she advises firm lawyers and clients on a wide variety of technical issues relating to discovery in complex litigation.

Denise B. Bach, CEDS | Membership Liaison
Denise B. Bach is a Managing Director in the E-Discovery practice of the Dispute Advisory & Forensic Services Group at Stout Risius Ross. She has extensive experience in digital forensics, e-discovery and paper discovery working with law firms, corporate counsel, litigation support managers, and paralegals to bridge the gap between discovery and technology.

Scott A. Petz | Treasurer
Scott A. Petz is a Member in Dickinson Wright’s Detroit office. Mr. Petz focuses his practice in the areas of commercial and business litigation, class and collective actions, labor litigation, consumer protection, and condemnation and land use.

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