Alumni Spotlight: Femminineo Brothers Pursue Legal Careers

Alumni Spotlight

  • Jacob “Jake” Femminineo, Class of 1988
  • David Femminineo, Class of 1990

In November 2020, Jake Femminineo, Class of 1988, ran unopposed for the 41B District Court in Clinton Township, a six-year term, but he was no stranger to the judge’s bench.

Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer had already appointed Jake over three other applicants to the vacant seat of Judge Linda Davis in March 2019. 

In tapping Femminineo, the governor’s press release said, “Jacob Femminineo is a qualified professional with a wealth of education and experience.” 

Judge Davis retired to take on the head position of the anti-drug non-profit organization she co-founded in 2008, Families Against Narcotics.

After graduation from De La Salle, Jake earned his B.A. in Political Science in 1991 from Wayne State University, and his law degree in 1995 from the Detroit College of Law. He later earned a Master’s in Public Administration, also from Wayne State, in 2013. 

“Most of my friends went away, and I was one of the only ones who stayed home,” Jake said. 

Jake joined his father’s law firm after law school, in 1995, and is grateful he had finished his undergraduate degree ahead of schedule. The elder Femmineno, Jacob, passed away suddenly from a heart attack in 1996, and Jake found himself as a young attorney handling a well-established practice. 

He also became active in the Macomb County Bar Association (MCBA), holding offices, including Chair, with the Young Lawyers section, and then as an officer and President on the Main Board. He continues to be the youngest President to ever serve in the 104-year history of the MCBA.

Jake also has a track record of public service, serving on the Mt. Clemens Planning Commission, and as chair of the Macomb County Charter Commission. That charter commission group worked on the new Macomb County charter, approved by voters in November 2009. 

On his docket, Jake handles a number of drug and alcohol cases. “People are never too old to fix what is wrong with them. I had my own alcohol issues in the past, and I am able to use that perspective to help those in front of me.” 

He added, “I really work to help people who have had addiction problems, and structure their probation in a manner that helps them with the rest of their lives.” 

Of his DLS education, Jake set, “Going to college was a continuation of high school in many respects.” He went on to praise the school’s emphasis on good study habits, and setting priorities.

“DLS gave me the ambition and desire to go out and achieve whatever I wanted. I had a great deal of confidence from the ‘Builders of Boys. Makers of Men.’ mentality. 

Jake is involved with the Pilot Bar Association and has also served as a judge for the DLS Mock Trial Team. 

When Jake was appointed to the bench, he left the family practice in the sole hands of his younger brother David, Class of ‘90. 

“I miss being in practice, and going into the office and seeing people I worked with, and helping the different clients,” Jake said. “And I got to see my brother more often. But this was a great time in my life to transition after being in practice for nearly 25 years.” 

Jake currently lives in an historic home in the Mt. Clemens area with his wife Kelly. 

David Femminineo, now the manager of Femminineo Attorneys, tread a slightly different path. 

He attended Michigan State University, majoring in political science, and graduated in 3.5 years. 

But like Jake, David, too, attended the Detroit College of Law, graduating in December of 1996. 

David, however, decided to learn about the “other side of the business,” and spent time working at AAA Insurance, as an in-house counsel, defending auto accident cases, before joining Jake in the family practice. 

“I wanted to represent injured people,” David said. “I watched my dad, who was a divorce and criminal attorney, get excited when he had an injury case. He would have me help him. I learned that if you work really hard on the case, you will get a better result than if you went the lazy route. This is similar to what I did in high school and college. I worked hard, at jobs like parking cars or waiting tables. I figured out how to talk to people when I was working at these customer service activities.”

David says the firm is rapidly expanding, and he is looking to extend the firm’s reach in the injury field outside of the tri-county Wayne, Oakland, and Macomb area. 

Alumni may have seen David on television, advertising his firm’s services. 

“There is tremendous competition out there, with some of the firms spending $12 - 17 million a year on advertising.” 

His practice centers upon representing individuals who have been injured as a result of the negligence of others. 

David also has a track record of public service, and serves on the Executive Board of the Michigan Trial Lawyers Association. He is also a member of the Pilot Bar Association. 

David and his wife Rebecca married in 2002. Their son Zachary is a current sophomore and ranks in the top three of his class academically.  Another son is in sixth grade at St. Lawrence, and their twin girls are in third grade.

He praises his De La Salle education. 

“De La Salle pushed me in the right direction,” David said. “I have a type A personality, and DLS taught me to channel my energy toward education and friendship.” 

He remains friends with many of his Class of 1990 classmates, a group that boasts numerous attorneys and judges both locally and statewide.

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