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Brian G. Goodenough

313 South Washington Square
Lansing, MI 48933-2114
T 517.371.8147
F 517.371.8200


Currently, Brian Goodenough chairs the firm's Employer Services Practice Group where he practices municipal law, zoning and land-use disputes and workers' compensation law. Previously, he served as a member of the firm's Executive Committee and as an officer of the firm.

His practice focuses on:

  • Zoning and land-use disputes - counsels townships, cities, counties and other municipalities.
  • Municipal law - represents municipalities against Freedom of Information Act and Open Meetings Act claims, counsels on cemetery liability, municipal insurance defense, fire/public safety department formation, litigation and funding.
  • Workers’ compensation - defends insurance companies and employers in workers' compensation litigation.

Brian has been recognized for his insurance defense work on behalf of his municipal clients. This includes being named Attorney of the Year in 2003 by Michigan’s largest insurer of municipalities. He has been named to Best Lawyers in America in Municipal, Real Estate and Workers’ Compensation law.

Brian was an adjunct professor for 20-plus years at the Thomas M. Cooley Law School, where he has taught land-use and zoning law. In addition, he is an active member of several civic groups, including the Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce, where he has served as the group’s Chair and as its General Counsel. Brian has served on the Board of Directors for Ele's Place.

Brian started as an associate at Foster Swift in 1989. In 1996, he became a shareholder.

Honors & Recognitions

Theodore Swift Civility Award, Ingham County Bar Association, 2023

AV® Preeminent™ Martindale-Hubbell

Best Lawyers® 2017 and Best Lawyers® 2020 Litigation – Real Estate "Lawyer of the Year" in Lansing

Best Lawyers in America® 2009-2024 (Insurance Law; Workers' Compensation Law - Employers; Litigation - Real Estate; Litigation - Municipal)

Attorney of the Year for 2003, Mid-West Claims for Municipal Insurance Defense

Award for 15 years of Continuous Service, Mid-West Claims (Defending municipalities through Mid-West Claims)


Memberships & Affiliations

Legal Affiliations:
  • Ingham County Bar Association
  • State Bar of Michigan
    • Workers' Compensation Section, Director
Industry & Professional Associations:
  • Michigan Association of Municipal Attorneys, Member
Community Involvement:
  • Ele's Place, Board of Directors
  • Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce
    • Former General Counsel
    • Former Chairman of the Board of Directors
  • Volunteers of America, former member of Board of Directors
  • DeWitt Township Volunteer Fire Department, former member



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Western Michigan University Thomas M. Cooley Law School, J.D., 1988, cum laude

Central Michigan University, B.S., 1985

Bar and Court Admissions


U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan