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Nessel Announces Department Promotions and Additions

LANSING –Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel today announced the addition and promotion of department staff, saying “It’s important our department has the best of the best serving the residents of our state. Today’s additions and promotions put top professionals in key roles within the department with a depth and breadth of knowledge and experience that is second to none.”


Ann Sherman has been promoted from Assistant Solicitor General to Deputy Solicitor General. Sherman is a 13-year department veteran, first serving as an appellate specialist and then as an Assistant Solicitor General. She has practiced in the U.S. Supreme Court, Michigan Supreme Court, Michigan Court of Appeals, and the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. Sherman is a two-time recipient of the Department of Attorney General’s Excellence in Appellate Advocacy award and a recipient of the department’s Civil Litigator of the Year award. A Michigan State University College of Law graduate, Sherman also serves as an elected member of the State Bar of Michigan Appellate Council and is a Fellow of the Michigan State Bar Foundation.

Heather Meingast an Assistant Attorney General, has been promoted to chief of the Civil Litigation, Employment and Elections Division. Meingast is a 15-year department veteran serving in the Solicitor General’s Division, Appellate Division and most recently the Opinions Division. She has more than 20 years of experience practicing law and is a graduate of Michigan State University College of Law. Meingast started her career as a research attorney in the Michigan Court of Appeals, then was an associate at Fraser, Trebilcock, Davis and Dunlap and the Michigan Supreme Court before joining the Attorney General’s Office in 2004.

D.J. Pascoe has been promoted to Opinions Division Chief. Pascoe has spent more than 25 years in public service, most recently as First Assistant Attorney General for the department’s Corporate Oversight Division and as a member of the Opinion Review Board. A graduate of Wayne State University Law School, Pascoe served as a judicial clerk in the Michigan Supreme Court before joining the department in one of the last groups of attorneys hired by then-Attorney General Frank Kelley. He has worked in several practice areas within the department, including public employment, elections, education, insurance, antitrust, and consumer protection.

Veneshia Cezil has been promoted to chief of the department’s Children & Youth Services Division. Joining the department in 2015, Cezil gave hundreds of children a voice by representing the Department of Health and Human Services in child abuse and neglect cases. Prior to working for the AG, Cezil worked for the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office in its General Trials Division where she prosecuted cases from assaultive crimes and larcenies to drug crimes, armed robberies and sexual assault crimes. She is a graduate of Thomas M. Cooley Law School.

Pier King-Pipenbrok has been promoted to the newly created position of Senior Executive Management Assistant in the Detroit office. A Detroit native, King-Pipenbrok worked under five administrations within the Department of the Attorney General. She has been the Division Head Secretary Supervisor in the Civil Rights Division providing administrative assistance to the Civil Rights Division Chief, Detroit Office Director and the Civil Rights and Civil Litigation Practice Group Manager. She has also performed a multitude of administrative duties instrumental in the overall function of the Attorney General’s Detroit Office. King-Pipenbrok is a graduate of the University of Michigan.

Susan Bannister has been promoted to Senior Executive Management Assistant to Deputy Attorney General Kelly Keenan. A Durand native, Bannister started her career with the State of Michigan as a legal secretary to the Workers’ Compensation Board of Magistrates, providing administrative assistance to magistrates and mediators. Bannister joined the department in 2011 as a Section Head Supervisor for the Labor Division where she provided administrative assistance to the division’s First Assistant Attorney General. Most recently she served as Department Analyst, providing information technology assistance to the department.

New Hires

Suzanne Sonneborn started her career with the department in 1996 and is now returning as Chief Legal Counsel, following several years as deputy legal counsel to former Gov. Jennifer Granholm and then as an administrative law judge for the Department of Health & Human Services and most recently at the Michigan Public Service Commission. Sonneborn has worked on several issues affecting state government, including state and federal civil rights laws, and civil prosecution of environmental and anti-trust violations. Sonneborn is a Thomas M. Cooley Law School graduate.

Danielle Hagaman-Clark joins the department as Assistant Attorney General and will lead the department’s homicide, criminal sexual conduct and cold cases. She is also prosecuting former Michigan State University dean of the College of Osteopathic Medicine William Strampel and former MSU gymnastics coach Kathy Klages. Hagaman-Clark was responsible for the first prosecution resulting from the discovery and testing of more than 11,000 previously untested rape kits in Detroit. Prior to joining the department, Hagaman-Clark worked for the Prosecuting Attorneys Association of Michigan as the director of victim services and violence against women and children. A graduate of the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law, Hagaman-Clark began her legal career as a litigation division clerk and then as an assistant prosecuting attorney for various units within the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office.

Robyn Frankel joins the department as the head of its newly established Conviction Integrity Unit. A 30-year private practice attorney, Frankel has handled cases at the trial and appellate levels. She has also served as an adjunct professor at Oakland University’s Paralegal Program, University of Michigan Law School appellate clinic and Detroit College of Law criminal trial practice clinic. Frankel is a Lewis and Clark Law School graduate.  

Sunita Doddamani is leading the department’s first Hate Crimes Unit. Doddamani is a first-generation American who has more than 15 years of experience prosecuting violent felonies and hate crimes, most recently at the Macomb County Prosecutor’s Office. For more than a decade, Doddamani has trained prosecutors throughout the state in high-tech trial litigation, courtroom technology and visual trial presentation through the Prosecuting Attorneys Association of Michigan. She is a Wayne State University Law School graduate and has tried more than 150 felony cases in her career.

Keisha Glenn now leads the department’s newly established Auto Insurance Fraud Unit. Glenn is a Detroit native who spent six years fighting against auto insurance fraud in metro Detroit.  During her time at the University of Detroit Mercy Law School, Glenn worked on behalf of Michigan’s most vulnerable, providing free legal aid to qualified senior citizens and asylum seekers as an intern. Since then, she’s spent nearly a decade as an assistant prosecuting attorney in Wayne County in the special victims unit, trial division, major drug unit and juvenile division. Glenn is the former chair of the Detroit Income Tax Board of Review.


Photos of staff: