Honigman LLP Announces the Passing of Law Firm Co-founder Alan E. Schwartz

Press Release

DETROIT -- We are deeply saddened to announce that Alan E. Schwartz, 97, a founder and partner at Honigman LLP, passed away on July 27, 2023. He joined Jason L. Honigman and Milton J. (Jack) Miller in 1952 creating the firm, which was then known as Honigman Miller and Schwartz.

“Alan was in every sense of the word a gentleman. He treated everyone he met with kindness and dignity. Alan was a lawyer, businessman and friend to his clients, whom he served with integrity and intelligence,” said Honigman Chairman and CEO David Foltyn. “He was a selfless leader and volunteer in civic, cultural and nonprofit organizations devoted to improving Detroit from a business and a social perspective. He was involved in nearly every major development project in the city as an attorney and as a leader in business organizations. His commitment to the cultural treasures of Detroit is well known. It was his vision for Honigman ‘to be the best law firm for the best lawyers’ which has inspired and guided our firm for over half a century.”

Schwartz was raised in Detroit and was a graduate of Cranbrook Schools and the University of Michigan. His undergraduate studies were interrupted by two years of service in Guam during World War II. After graduating, with distinction, from U-M, he earned an LL.B., magna cum laude, from Harvard Law School. Schwartz began his career on Wall Street but in 1952, he and his wife, Marianne, decided to return to Detroit where they both grew up.

His legal practice at Honigman focused on corporate organization, governance, acquisitions, mergers, and divestitures. He served on approximately 20 public company boards, including AT&T, Burroughs, Comerica and Detroit Edison.

The list of community organizations that benefited from his leadership is extensive. He was a founding trustee of the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan and among the first to serve on the boards of New Detroit, Inc., Detroit Renaissance (now Business Leaders for Michigan) and the Detroit Economic Growth Corporation. At the time of his death, Schwartz was an honorary board member of the Detroit Institute of Arts and a director emeritus of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. Both organizations honored him for his generosity as a volunteer and as a donor. He was also a trustee emeritus of New Detroit, Inc., which honored him for his contributions in 2012, and a lifetime board member of the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit, which bestowed upon him the Fred M. Butzel Memorial Award in 2008.

In 2013, then Detroit Mayor Dave Bing created the Alan E. Schwartz award, making him the first recipient. This award is given annually to an individual in recognition of his or her outstanding commitment to community service, as exemplified by Schwartz. His other awards include the George W. Romney Award for Lifetime Achievement in Volunteerism, the Max M. Fisher Community Service Award from United Way for Southeastern Michigan, the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Detroit Institute of Arts and the Judge Learned Hand Award from the American Jewish Committee. He also has received honorary Doctor of Law degrees from Wayne State University and the University of Detroit.

In addition, Schwartz was inducted into the International Institute of Metropolitan Detroit Hall of Fame in 1984 and named a Detroit News Michiganian of the Year in 1987.

Schwartz was preceded in death by his wife, Marianne, in 2017.  He is survived by his children, Marc (Emily Camiener) Schwartz, Kurt (Susan) Schwartz and Ruthanne (Joe) Fuller, and five grandchildren.

Maggie Nonnenkamp, mnonnenkamp@honigman.com, Honigman LLP, 630.715.0350
Carolyn Artman, CRIMSON on behalf of Honigman LLP, carolyn@crimsonagency.com, 313.269.4729

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