Human Resources and Law

Mary Bonnema leads law firm

September 23, 2014
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Mary Bonnema
Mary Bonnema.

Editor’s note: Each issue of the Influential Women enewsletter will feature profiles of the Business Journal’s reigning 50 Most Influential Women in West Michigan. The profile first appeared in the event program.

As one of the first female managing shareholders of a West Michigan law firm, Mary Bonnema is a trailblazer.

The firm

As president and CEO of Grand Rapids-based McGarry Bair since 2000, she has developed a highly successful high-tech, high-touch law firm specializing in all aspects of intellectual property.

Her clients include several Fortune 500 companies and their global intellectual property portfolios.

In fact, McGarry Bair was named a Go-To Law Firm for the Top 500 Companies by Fortune Magazine for the sixth consecutive year and has been named a U.S. News & World Report Best Law Firm for 2014.

Bonnema was also recently named a member of the Bar Register for Pre-eminent Women Lawyers for 2014 by Martindale-Hubbell.

In the community

In addition to leading the firm and serving as an active practicing attorney, Bonnema holds many board and volunteer responsibilities and is committed to the West Michigan community.

For the last five years, she has volunteered for The Dwelling Place Charity Event each April. Previously, she acted as girls soccer team manager for the Grand Rapids Crew Juniors and coached Odyssey of the Mind teams for elementary students at West Side Christian School, where she also recently served on the school’s principal search committee.

Currently, Bonnema sits on the board of trustees for Calvin College and speaks at local colleges.


She also writes prolifically in her spare time. In addition to professional articles, Bonnema has published two historical romance novels under the pen name Ellie Cort.

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