Michael Wilder

Chairman of the Board of Directors

Littler Mendelson, P.C.

How did you learn about JTB? 

Judge Ann Claire-Williams (Ret.)

What sparked your interest in the law?

My original interest in the law dates back to junior high.  At the time, I was very interested in politics and knew many politicians were lawyers at the time.  Eventually, after attending law school and practicing law, I grew to love the practice of law, particularly labor and employment defense work. 

What was your experience like and what was your favorite part about volunteering with JTB?

One of the greatest joys is to give back.  As an Associate at Littler, I joined the Associate Board for JTB.  What I enjoyed most at this level was interacting with law students and young lawyers, as well as raising money for JTB’s mission.  After several years and once I was promoted to Shareholder at Littler, I was elevated to JTB’s Board of Directors.  In this capacity, I greatly enjoyed continuing to mentor young attorneys, helping JTB with its budget, hosting programs, fundraising, and continuing the mission of the organization.

Why are you passionate about JTB’s mission?

I strongly believe that without exposure you cannot see who you could one day become, especially someone such as myself that grew up in Detroit, was a first-generation college and law school graduate, and did not meet a single Black male attorney until attending law school at Chicago-Kent starting in 2003.  That means I went 22 years without meeting someone similar to me in that regard that I was striving to become one day.  JTB takes that obstacle away with its programming and exposure. 

What advice do you have for our scholars?

Never give up on yourself.  I went from being a summer associate to Chair of the Board of Directors for a global law firm by the age of 41. 

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