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First Law Firm to Win Michigan 50 Companies to Watch


Annual firm growth exceeds 13% within a culture that values both clients and staff.

May 16, 2024, Okemos, Michigan. — Fahey Schultz Burzych Rhodes (FSBR), based in Okemos, is the first law firm to be recognized as one of Michigan’s “50 Companies to Watch” by Michigan Celebrates Small Business. The distinguished award recognizes growing, high-potential Michigan companies that demonstrate excellence and support the state’s economy. FSBR was honored in part for its outstanding growth trajectory of 13.5% per year over six years — more than double the average annual law firm growth of 6.1%. The firm’s business practice alone grew by 21%.

FSBR will be acknowledged on stage at the awards ceremony during the 20th annual Michigan Celebrates Small Business Gala on May 21, 2024. The event will gather over 800 guests at the Breslin Center in East Lansing, Michigan to celebrate the achievements of this year’s award recipients.

“Fahey Schultz Burzych Rhodes, PLC is honored and grateful to receive this prestigious award,” said FSBR President Mark Burzych. “The nomination was flattering enough, but to be the first and only law firm that met the rigorous selection criteria is humbling. Our growth is a welcome reflection of our diligent focus on client service.”

FSBR is a boutique law firm with over 30 attorneys that find practical solutions for complex legal problems. Consistent with its growth trajectory, FSBR has hiring commitments and projections over the next 12 months that will bring the firm to over 40 attorneys. Established in 2008, FSBR was launched with the intent of being a different kind of law firm — not a “do-anything-for-anyone firm,” rather lean and laser-focused across niche client markets that benefit from their deep expertise. FSBR is fiercely dedicated to their clients, which consist of municipalities and local units of government, drain and water resource commissioners, franchisors, businesses (particularly in the hospitality industry), public utilities, and public and private sector employers. The firm’s focus on specific client markets has established FSBR as the state and national leader in these industries.

Today the firm remains nimble, efficient and well connected, and offers a level of customer service that competitors can’t match. As trusted advisors, FSBR attorneys offer expert representation and personal attention—they are responsive to every client’s needs and conduct their work authentically, transparently, and with integrity. Just as important, the firm strives to be affordable for their clients, producing high-quality work without ever cutting corners.

FSBR has deep expertise in municipal law, helping more than 200 unique local units of government find solutions for a wide array of legal issues, and anticipating and preventing problems before they arise. The firm’s municipal law practice has grown by more than 15% annually over the past six years. One client noted, “I have had experience with several departments at Fahey Schultz Burzych Rhodes, including multiple attorneys. Every attorney, every interaction, every product provided is of the highest quality. Fahey Schultz Burzych Rhodes specializes in municipal law, and it shows.”

The business attorneys at FSBR have a combined 80 years of experience in franchise law and represent more than 40 franchise systems. As Michigan’s premiere franchise law firm, FSBR can tackle any franchise issue, including corporate transactions, system contracts, real estate transactions, labor and employment, liquor licensing, and intellectual property, at any stage in a franchise system growth, and across multiple industries. A client noted, “Fahey Schultz Burzych Rhodes has been our first choice from day one of operations. They are the best and most thorough franchise law firm we have ever encountered. I refer them to any new franchisor and trust them completely.”

Fahey Schultz Burzych Rhodes is widely acknowledged as a leading authority in water resources law, providing trusted counsel to most of the drain and water resources commissioners across the state. Spearheading significant advancements in wetland mitigation programs, drainage procedures, and stormwater management initiatives, the team’s efforts benefit individuals, farmers, municipalities, and the broader community. Their dedication to excellence has been instrumental in driving FSBR’s remarkable growth in this area, averaging a 10.14% annual increase over the past six years.

FSBR’s labor and employment experts primarily represent management in both the public and private sectors. Their knowledge and experience ensure timely and successful outcomes for their employer clients. Clients trust the labor and employment team to provide accurate, prompt, practical information for the most complex personnel and labor matters. They regularly donate their time to speak on key and developing issues that face public employers, including complex constitutional matters. They also address issues that concern private sector employers in industries that face significant staffing shortages and regulatory attention. Their integrity earns them the respect of opposing representatives in grievance proceedings, labor arbitrations, unfair labor practice proceedings, and investigators of state and federal agencies, including the EEOC, MDCR, DOL, the UIA, etc.

Fahey Schultz Burzych Rhodes stands out for its internal culture, which is rooted in mutual respect, support, and inclusion. Firm leaders believe that communication and collaboration are key. They remain personally invested in nurturing a culture of continuous improvement that promotes individual professional development while encouraging work-life balance. Unlike most larger firms, associates learn directly from FSBR partners, who serve as mentors. This kind of quality partnership leads to exceptional legal representation.

FSBR Associate Addison Standlee explains, “In an industry that often prioritizes billable hours, our firm champions associate development and client service. FSBR’s approach to the practice of law isn’t just refreshing, it’s effective. From my first day on the job, two things were made abundantly clear: ‘You matter’ and ‘Your work matters.’ The spirit of our firm’s philosophy is contagious — when attorneys and staff feel valued and respected, it’s no surprise that our clients do too.”

Michigan Celebrates received over 500 nominations for the 2024 Michigan 50 Companies to Watch award. In addition to a competitive landscape for this award, the businesses selected go through a rigorous due diligence process before the final decision. Judges from across the state select the top winners based on criteria that include the company’s capacity to grow, its exceptional leadership and economic contribution in the market, and other notable factors that demonstrate a company’s success.

FSBR is proud to be included among Michigan’s top 50 Companies to Watch and anticipates many more years of continued growth and excellence for their clients and community.


Michigan Celebrates Small Business (MCSB) is a collaboration of trusted statewide founding organizations who offer resources for small businesses. Since 2005, Michigan Celebrates Small Business awards gala has placed a spotlight on how small businesses positively impact our communities and state. The MCSB organization is focused on supporting, promoting and celebrating small businesses in Michigan.

To learn more about FSBR, visit https://fsbrlaw.com

For media inquiries, please contact Mark Burzych, President

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At Fahey Schultz Burzych Rhodes PLC, we’ve been helping municipalities, franchised businesses, employers, and more with their legal needs since 2008. We’d love to learn how we can help you, too.