SADO Congratulates Marilena David-Martin

Assistant Defender Receives the 2014 Regeana Myrick Outstanding Young Lawyer Award

The State Bar of Michigan Young Lawyers Section will present Marilena David-Martin with the Regeana Myrick Outstanding Young Lawyer Award on Saturday, May 31, at the Radisson Hotel in Lansing.

The award is named for Regeana Myrick, who was a very active member of the SBM Young Lawyers Section Executive Council when she died in 1997. It is presented annually to a young lawyer in Michigan who has demonstrated many of her best qualities, including an overwhelming commitment to public service, exemplary service to the State Bar, and exceptional professional accomplishments.

Marilena has been a member of SADO since 2007 when she began an internship with Assistant Defender Valerie Newman as a first year law student and soon after joined the staff as a paralegal while finishing up at Wayne State University Law School.  After passing the bar exam in 2009, she began the important task of launching the office's Crime Lab Unit, a federally funded unit created to examine cases affected by the 2008 Detroit Crime Lab closure.  Marilena has managed the Crime Lab Unit and has examined over 700 cases for issues relating to problems with unreliable forensic evidence.  The Crime Lab Unit successfully advocated for new trials for several clients.

Marilena has most recently worked as the staff attorney for the SADO Department of Justice Gideon Grant.  She was part of the team that was awarded the Criminal Defense Attorneys of Michigan Justice for All Award for her work investigating convictions involving the now closed Detroit Crime Lab.  Marilena serves on the Appellate Practice Section Council of the State Bar of Michigan, where she co-chaired the Good Deeds Committee. She has also volunteered at the Ronald McDonald House of Detroit. She is the chair of the SADO Community Outreach Committee, and has been involved in developing “Family Outreach Nights” and an informational packet of support for family and friends of incarcerated people, as well as a community resource database as part of a reentry project. Marilena is an active volunteer with the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and with the Detroit Parade Company.

Congratulations, Mari!