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Gov. Rick Snyder appoints Judge Colleen O'Brien to Michigan Court of Appeals

Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2015

LANSING, Mich. -- Colleen O’Brien, an Oakland Circuit Court judge with more than 30 years of legal experience, was today appointed to the Michigan Court of Appeals by Gov. Rick Snyder.

“Collen has served with distinction in one of the state’s largest trial courts for 16 years handling complex civil, criminal, and family law cases,” Snyder said.  “As the president of the Michigan Judges Association, she is an important leader in our state’s judiciary. Her personal integrity, widely respected legal acumen, and substantial judicial experience will be of great benefit to the Court of Appeals and the people of Michigan.”

O’Brien, of Clarkston, fills the vacancy created by the resignation of Judge Pat Donofrio. She must seek election in 2016 in order to serve a full, six-year term.

O’Brien has been on the 6th Circuit Court in Oakland County since being elected in 1998 and is the presiding judge of the Oakland Civil-Criminal Division. Prior to serving as a judge, O’Brien was in private practice as an attorney at Cummings, McClorey, Davis & Achos in Southfield and has experience with three other Detroit-area law firms.

In addition to her judicial experience, O’Brien has been active in a number of community groups serving families and children, including serving as an adviser to Crossroads for Youth, a nonprofit treatment agency that serves at-risk children facing a variety of challenges. She is a member of the Michigan Interagency Council on Homelessness, a former member of the Women Lawyers Association of Michigan Board of Directors and is former president of the Oakland County Women’s Bar Association.

She earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan and received her law degree from Detroit College of Law in 1981.

O’Brien is married to Thomas J. Cory and has two children, Meghan and Mark.