June 28, 2012
Firm Celebrates 25-year Anniversary of Jim Olson, Ruth Ann Liebziet, and Doreen Schramski
It is hard to believe it that it was twenty-five years ago that Jim, Ruth Ann, and Doreen, began working together.  As professional colleagues, but more importantly, as friends, the firm today celebrated this special anniversary together with great food, stories of legal battles fought side-by-side, some tokens of our gratitude, and lots of smiles and laughs.  Thanks for all you do Ruth Ann and Doreen, and congratulations!
June 2012
Firm Recognized as a "Bicycle Friendly Business"

The League of American Bicyclists has recognized the long-standing, active promotion of cycling within business culture as practiced by Olson, Bzdok & Howard for many years, and has designated the firm as a bicycle-friendly business at the League's "Silver Level".  

The League works to advocate for a bicycle-friendly America by promoting "bicycling for fun, fitness and transportation," and cites the firm's commuter tax benefit, bike maintenance/gear night gatherings, reimbursements for cycling-related gear used for office business, and other incentives as some of the ways that the firm is striving to reduce its carbon footprint by promoting biking and other alternative transportation options.

You can read more about the designation at this link.


April 8, 2012
Chris Bzdok - Wind Power is Good for Michigan

"Wind power is good for Michigan's economy. This year, Consumers and Detroit Edison will spend $1.4 billion importing coal from Appalachia and Wyoming. By contrast, 24 renewable energy projects have been built here, by Michigan workers. Wind projects sign leases with farmers, providing extra income without taking up much land. ... Other Great Lakes states have increased their renewable energy standards beyond 10 percent. We can lead with them, or lag behind. Shouldn't we lead?"  

Read more at the Record-Eagle.


February 14, 2012
Advocates: Void Permit to Fill Wetlands
Jim Olson & Ross Hammersley represent NMEAC, the Interlochen Center for the Arts and others, and recently filed a petition for review in 13th Circuit Court, asking the 13th Circuit Court to void a state permit that allows the infill of wetlands near Interlochen. "The wetland law was put in place to protect these kind of wetland complexes in the first place," said Greg Reisig, NMEAC board chairman. "In this case, the DEQ did not enforce the law, and the law is being violated if they are allowed to go ahead."  Read more at the Record-Eagle.
August 2011
h2Olson - Traverse City Attorney is Defender of Global Water

“My name is Jim Olson.” The crowd instantly erupts in applause and cheers, like they’ve all just been waiting for the opportunity. Olson is one of their water heroes. Raised on the shore of East Grand Traverse Bay and now a nationally renowned environmental attorney, he has been working to protect that amazing covalent bonding of two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom since his career began in the mid-1970’s.

Read the rest at MyNorth.com


May 6, 2011
Traverse City Conference Warns that Corporations are Gaining Dangerous Control Over World's Waters

Jim Olson, nationally renowned environmental lawyer based in Traverse City and chair of the Flow for Water Coalition, warns that precedent is giving more and more ownership of water rights to corporations at the expense of public good.

Read More


May 6, 2011

Chris Bzdok Bestows Key to the City of Traverse City to Maude Barlow

While Barlow’s presentation was full of both interesting and somewhat concerning information about the current state of the Great Lakes and the need to unite an international movement to protect them in perpetuity, Mayor Bzdok’s warm introduction and insightful commentary was a highlight.

Read more from MLUI's Brian Beauchamp...


October 8, 2010

The New Oil

On October 8, 2010 Newsweek published an article with commentary from Jim Olson.  Read the Newsweek article.


September 29, 2010

Champion of Justice Award

On September 29, 2010 Jim Olson accepted the State Bar of Michigan's Champion of Justice Award.


Firm Creates Resource for Aiding in Protection of Water and the Public Trust

Olson, Bzdok & Howard helps create new environmental law website:
Legal Tools to Protect Coastal Environments


March 12, 2010

Michigan Court of Appeals affirms trial court's denial of governmental immunity in Wexford Landfill case.

Read the Record Eagle article featuring Jeff Jocks.

Read the Court of Appeals opinion.


October 2009
Michigan's Clean Energy Legislation: Charging Toward a New Energy Future.

Read this cover story for the Michigan Bar Journal by Chris Bzdok and James Clift.


October 5, 2009
Water Wars: Advocating for 'public trust'

Read the Record Eagle article featuring Jim Olson.


September 16, 2009
Court of Appeals Hears Public Access to Lake Michigan Case

Read the Grand Rapids Press Editorial.


April 1, 2009
Michigan Court of Appeals Affirms Anglers of the Au Sable Decision

Merit Energy Cannot Discharge Wastewater to Kolke Creek

Read the Record Eagle article.

Read the Court of Appeals opinion.


November 16, 2008
The movie Flow, featuring Jim Olson, plays nationally to rave reviews.

Click here for link to the film's website, including reviews.

Read the Record Eagle editorial: Listen to Jim Olson, close the water loophole.

For background on problems with the Great Lakes Compact and threatened export exception, see:
Olson, Navigating the Great Lakes Compact, Water, Public Trust, and International Trade Agreements, 2006 Michigan State Law Review 1103 (2007).

Click for the link to Michigan Citizens for Water Conservation and the public trust campaign.


Kate Redman Discusses Crowd-Funding Rules in TC's Record-Eagle

“Investment crowdfunding has been leading the industry globally, but we should see a really startling growth in the U.S. once these new rules are effective,” said Kate Redman, attorney with Olson, Bzdok & Howard PC in Traverse City. Redman will offer training “labs” starting in May for businesses and nonprofits interested in investment crowdfunding. Contact her at kate@envlaw.com for more information.

Traverse City Record-Eagle (01-24-16) 

The Traverse City law firms, Olson, Bzdok & Howard, P.C. and Sondee, Racine & Doren, PLC, are pleased to announce our formal affiliation as of January 1, 2016. Our firms will be working together closely to represent clients as a team, and provide our clients with a greater variety and depth of legal services.

Each firm will retain its own identity, but Sondee, Racine & Doren will be “of counsel” to Olson Bzdok & Howard. This means that all of our attorneys will have a close, continuous and regular professional relationship and that we all will work together for you.

Each firm will be maintaining its own office and staff, and all attorney contact information will remain the same.


Public Trust Framework Recommended for Great Lakes

The International Joint Commission (IJC) of the United States & Canada has issued a report recommending the application of a bi-national Public Trust framework to help fill regulatory gaps and guide decision-making that will ensure the protection of the long-term ecological integrity, economic stability, and the many public and private uses of the Great Lakes.

Firm founder Jim Olson has advocated for the active implementation of Public Trust principles in Great Lakes decision-making for decades, so this recommendation is both a welcome development, and a tremendous accomplishment. Congratulations Jim!

Full Report (pdf): Protection of the Waters of the Great Lakes 

Kate Redman is one of TC's 40 under 40!

Kate Redman, Community Enterprise Attorney and Partner at Olson, Bzdok & Howard, has been selected as one of Traverse City's Most Influential Professionals under 40 for 2015. This is the second year in a row Kate has been selected by the TC Business News as part of TC's "40 under 40." Congrats Kate!

Sept. 1, 2015 

Partnership Announcement

Olson, Bzdok & Howard is pleased to announce that Ross A. Hammersley and Kate E. Redman became shareholders with the firm. Please take a look at their attorney profiles to learn more about these young legal trailblazers.

March 20, 2015