Log in

CDAM's Spring Conference is on March 8 & 9, 2024 at 3600 Centerpoint Parkway in Pontiac, Michigan. Attendees may earn 12 total CLE Skill Training Hours. The cost is $480 for CDAM Members and $600 for Non-Members. Those with CDAM Direct Billing Agreements Register Free. 

CDAM has two eight-hour Skill Training sessions on March 7th: A is For Attorney and Evidence Boot Camp E. The cost is $320 for CDAM Members and $480 for Non-Members. 

Your Case Issues, from 4-6pm, a CDAM Member benefit, free of charge. 


Post-Conviction Cases: When Everyone Else Has Moved On

Tracey Brame is Director of the Thomas M. Cooley Innocence Project and is an Associate Dean of Experiential Learning and Practice Preparation at Thomas M. Cooley Law School. She came to Cooley Law School in February 2006 from Legal Aid of Western Michigan, where she was a staff attorney.

Tracey served in varied capacities with the Public Defender Services for the District of Columbia, the Federal Defender Office, and the State Appellate Defender Office in Detroit. Her career began as law clerk to the Hon. Julian Abele Cook, Jr. in the U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Michigan. Tracey served with the Alabama Capital Resource Center focusing on death-penalty litigation and also drafted racial-justice legislation for the state of Alabama.

Dean Brame later brought her passion for justice to WMU-Cooley, starting the Access to Justice Clinic at the Grand Rapids campus in 2006. She oversees both this clinic and the West Michigan Public Defender Clinic. She finds time to teach elective constitutional law courses, and has served as an adjunct professor at Grand Rapids Community College.

Dean Brame shares a large portion of her time with students from middle school through college, working with the 3R’s Program and UPrep High School, and with the Grand Rapids Cooley Campus of WMU.  

Tracey Brame is also a Past President of the Grand Rapids Bar Association. 

Thursday, March 7, 2024 Speakers & Events

A IS FOR ATTORNEY | 9:30am - 5:30pm | 8 CLE Skill Hours | $320 CDAM Member/$400 Non-Member

Experience CDAM’s acclaimed new lawyer session. Learn what a new lawyer needs to know to begin practicing criminal defense: interviewing a client, setting up a file, nuts and bolts of criminal court procedures, Q&A. Morning session is procedure, working lunch. Afternoon session is trial skills. Click her to register now for A is For Attorney!

Click here to register now for A is For Attorney!

Lisa Kirsch-Satawa


James R. Samuels


EVIDENCE BOOT CAMP E | 9:00am - 5:00pm | 8 CLE Skill Hours | $320 CDAM Member/$400 Non-Member

CDAM’s Evidence Boot Camp E, ideal for lawyers with five or more years’ experience. These all-day, small group, hands-on, immersion trainings develop fast thinking skills, critical to introducing evidence in court. Limited to sixteen, paired into groups of two, attorneys work on fact patterns that focus on Rules of Evidence.It’s been said that if you know the Rules of Evidence, you can Rule the Courtroom. It’s true, and by attending an EBC, you will position yourself to Master the Courtroom.

Click here to register for Evidence Boot Camp E!

Steve Fenner


James Piazza


YOUR CASE ISSUES | 4pm - 6pm | No CLE Hours Issued | CDAM Members Only |Just Show Up!

Stumped on a strategy? Have questions on a case? This is your opportunity to get feedback and assistance from an experienced CDAM trial attorney.  Your Case Issues on Thursday, March 7, is open to CDAM members only and is free. No reservation needed -- just show up. Check in at the registration desk and CDAM staff will direct you to the meeting room. 

Rhonda B. Ives


          Michael Steinberg


CDAM BOARD MEETING | 6:15pm                                                                                                                                                    All CDAM members are welcome to attend. Those interested in running for CDAM’s Board of Directors must attend a board meeting within the past year.

LODGE PARTY | 7:30pm   

At Auburn Hills Marriott, Pontiac, lounge. Open to All Conference Registrants. Complimentary Hors D'oeuvres; Cash Bar. 

FRIDAY Speakers & Events - All Plenary Sessions

9:00-5:00pm (8 MIDC-compliant CLE Hours)

8:30-8:45am Pre-conference tutorial on how to use the conference Whova App (no CLE accrued) by Cathy Gentry

9:00-9:30am Stakeholder Updates by CDAM President Arthur Jay Weiss and MIDC Executive Director Kristin Staley

9:30-11:00am KEYNOTE: Post-Conviction Cases: When Everyone Else Has Moved On by Tracey Brame

11:00-11:10am  Break

11:10-12:00pm C.S.C. Cold Case Investigations: Common Issues and Discovery by Michael D. Hills 

12:00-1:00pm  LUNCH OPTIONS:

Working Lunch -- SADO's Web of Knowledge by CDRC Manager Kathy Swedlow

Group Lunch

Lunch on Your Own

1:00-1:30pm Stakeholder Updates by MAACS Executive Director Bradley Hall and  SADO CDRC Manager Kathy Swedlow 

1:30-2:20pm False Memories: Key Principles for Defense Attorneys by Kimberly Fenn

2:20-2:30pm Break

2:30-3:20pm The Legend on Ron Burgundy: Cold Rape=Shield Issue Heard by Michigan Supreme Court by Julia Kelly and Britt Cobb

3:20-5:00pm The Colorado Jury Selection Method: Winning Challenges for Cause by Erin Phillips

Stakeholder Updates 

Arthur J. Weiss
CDAM President

Kristen Staley

MIDC Executive Director


Post-Conviction Cases: When Everyone Else Has Moved On

Tracey Brame 

Grand Rapids, MI

Description: I will talk about the importance of post-conviction work, how it differs from trial and direct appeal work, and suggestions for the successful disposition of cases. I will also talk about the unique challenges of working with clients, law enforcement and prosecutors on old cases.


• Post-conviction work is a worthwhile and critically important endeavor.

Factors to consider when taking on post-conviction cases.

• Keep the Clients top of mind when you get tired and frustrated.

C.S.C. Cold Case Investigations Common Issues and Discovery

Michael D. Hills

Kalamazoo, MI

Description: We will explore the S.A.K.I. (sexual assault kit initiative) method of re-investigating and charging cold case rape allegations as an example or template for handling your future cold case clients.  We will take a close look at cold case discovery problems, how to dig in and litigate them.  We will discuss the methods of proof and the possibility of getting your case dismissed on discovery violations – but if not a dismissal, using discovery violations to your advantage.  We will discuss the top line discovery cases of Youngblood and Brady and then dive down into supporting cases and the details you need to litigate the discovery violations you discover.


• Be proactive with your discovery.

• Be aware of S.A.K.I techniques as they may be applied to other areas of criminal law

•  Use your discovery violations to inform your voir dire, opening, cross exam and closing.


WORKING LUNCH: SADO's Web of Knowledge by Kathy Swedlow

Kathy Swedlow 

SADO's CDRC Manager

Description: 100 hundred words of less: In this session, attendees will learn about the resources SADO offers to criminal defense subscribers and how these resources can help them with their work. We will review publications, training videos, model pleadings, the brief bank, and the expert and misconduct databases -- as well as a large collection of free resources SADO offers to people impacted by the criminal legal system.

FRIDAY Afternoon Speakers & Events - All Plenary Sessions


Stakeholder Updates 

Bradley Hall

MAACS Executive Director 

Kathy Swedlow

SADO's CDRC Manager

False Memories:

Key Principles for

Defense Attorneys  

Kimberly Fenn

East Lansing, MI

Description: Subjectively, memory feels pristine, as if it functions as video recorder. Actual memory, however, is highly prone to distortion and change. In this talk, I will discuss basic principles of memory and conditions under which memory can evolve or change, with a focus on false memory. I will also discuss subjective perception of memory and the inability to distinguish between true and false memories. Finally, I will briefly touch on traumatic memory. The goal of this session will be to increase overall knowledge of memory and memory failures and to highlight arguments often made by prosecutors, regarding memory.  


 There are several different forms of memory.

 False memories can be created through several different mechanisms.

 Individuals do not realize when a memory is false. 

 False memories are often accompanied with high level of confidence, detail, and emotion.

  It is impossible to distinguish between a true and false memory. 

 The Legend of Ron Burgundy: Cold Case Rape-Shield Issue Heard by Michigan Supreme Court

Britt Cobb and Julia Kelly 

Kalamazoo, MI

Description: Despite the passage of 10 years from the date of the offense to charging by SAKI in People v. Butler, defense investigators were able to unearth two prior allegations of sexual assault made by the complaining witness.   The trial court ruled one of the two prior allegations admissible despite rape-shield and the issue made its way to the Michigan Supreme Court.  Several other cases with similar issues pending in the Michigan Supreme Court were held in abeyance pending the decision in Butler. Britt and Julia are waiting for a decision following oral argument and will summarize the factual scenarios before the court, provide procedural tips on getting rape-shielded evidence admitted, along with any updates from the supreme court. 


 Follow the procedure in People v Hackett

 What is needed in the offer of proof for an in camera hearing.

 What is decided at the in camera hearing

  Trial admissibility issues.

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software