McKenzie Higgins, who holds a bachelor’s degree in political science with a minor in religious studies from Daemen College, received the Graduate of the Last Decade honor at the 2014 Distinguished Alumni Awards ceremony. After completing her undergraduate studies at Daemen, she pursued a law degree from Western Michigan University-Cooley Law School in Auburn Hills, Mich., and a master of laws in criminal law and trial advocacy also from Cooley Law School.
While attending law school, Higgins was an assistant prosecuting extern in the Lapeer County Prosecutor’s Office in Michigan and an extern in the Erie County District Attorney’s Office Felony Trials Bureau, and was involved with other valuable opportunities to further her experience in the field of law.
At Cooley, she received the school’s Leadership Achievement Award, which is presented to a graduating student who has demonstrated dedication to the campus community and the legal profession.
Higgins, who serves as a member at large on the Buffalo Chapter Alumni Council, is currently a human resources compliance analyst at M&T Bank. Her article, “Total Inclusion: Opening Therapeutic Justice Courts to Medical Marihuana Patients in Michigan,” is awaiting final publication this year in the Western Michigan University Cooley Journal of Clinical and Practical.
As founder and captain of the Daemen Ride for Roswell team, Higgins’ passion and dedication to the effort has resulted in more than $4,000 being raised since the college’s team first participated in 2010. Its success is even more remarkable given that she was attending law school and living outside Western New York at the time the Daemen team was established.
A Cheektowaga resident, Higgins is a member of the American Bar Association and the Incorporated Society of Irish-American Lawyers, and is a volunteer for GOBike Buffalo.