Vote Meinecke 2012: Meet Derek
Derek Meinecke has been in the courtroom and in the community working to keep our community safe. His experience, education and work ethic have enabled him to become a successful and respected assistant prosecutor. Serving more than 10 years in the Oakland County Prosecutor’s Office, he possesses a proven track record in the courtroom with strong leadership skills and determination to see justice served. He has worked the most difficult cases and has taken up the cause of the most vulnerable in our community.
Legal Career Highlights
As an Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, Derek has prosecuted the most serious violent offenders and worked with the most vulnerable victims as a member of the special victims unit focused on domestic violence, elder abuse, child abuse, and sexual assault.
In 2011, Derek was recognized as a leader in the fight against elder abuse by the Oakland County S.A.V.E. (Serving Adults who are Vulnerable and/or Elderly) Task Force. The Task Force awarded Derek with the “Courage to Lead” award, citing his efforts on “the front lines in prevention of elder abuse.” Oakland County Prosecutor Jessica Cooper describes Derek this way:
“Derek is someone who looks unassuming and quiet, but who has an inner strength,” Cooper said. “He makes it look easy in the courtroom, but it never is. He’s just the best of the best.”
In 2010, Michigan Lawyers Weekly recognized Derek as one of the best and brightest attorneys in Michigan naming Derek as an “Up & Coming Lawyer,” for the significant impact he has had in the battle against domestic violence and elder abuse.
In 2009, he was nominated by HAVEN and was awarded the OCCADV (Oakland County Coordinating Council Against Domestic Violence) Domestic Violence Prevention award for his work to end domestic violence, prosecute abusers, empower victims and educate police officers and community members on the dynamics of abuse.
Prior to becoming a prosecutor, Derek worked at the 44th District Court in Royal Oak as law clerk to the Honorable Judge Daniel Sawicki. The opportunity to learn from one of the most respected District Court judges in Michigan provided Derek with a strong foundation that has shaped his legal career. Derek has handled more than a thousand District Court cases providing him with the experience and understanding needed to be an effective judge.
Derek attended law school at Wayne State University and had two articles published in the school’s legal journal, The Wayne Law Review. He graduated with honors and following passing the bar exam he started with the Oakland County Prosecutor’s Office in early 2001.
Derek is deeply committed to serving the community. For the past six years he has served as a Board Trustee for the Boys & Girls Clubs of South Oakland County as well as a volunteer coach in the youth basketball program.
Derek truly cares about Royal Oak. He has volunteered thousands of hours on behalf of the youth in our community. Derek represents what is best of Royal Oak and he is committed preserving our community.
Derek is also heavily involved in Royal Oak Youth Football. Since 2009, Derek has served as a Board Member and Coach for the Royal Oak Chargers.
Derek draws a great deal of strength from his wife Mandy. They have been married for 13 years and have three children; Drew (10), Kate (7) and Jane (2). They are members of Guardian Angels Catholic Church and have enjoyed building a family in Royal Oak. Derek’s mom Valerie is also a Royal Oak resident.
Derek is a graduate of Northwestern University where he double-majored in Political Science and History.
In 1995, the year Derek met Mandy, his 43-year old father, Corky, was diagnosed with an aggressive colon cancer that had spread to his liver.
Corky bravely fought for sixteen months, finally succumbing on March 18, 1997. Derek and his family and friends established an annual golf outing to honor his dad who was a sportswriter for the Detroit Free Press. Proceeds from the golf outing support the funding of a scholarship at Grand Valley State University.
Royal Oak is an amazing community and deserves the very best on the bench. Judges Brennan and Sawicki have provided that level of excellence for decades. The next Royal Oak Judge should have distinctive legal accomplishments and unmatched experience combined with a significant connection to the community.
Derek Meinecke is the only candidate that meets those high expectations. He has tried the most difficult cases. He has brought the worst offenders to justice. He has protected the most vulnerable victims. He is deeply committed to Royal Oak and he understands what Royal Oak expects and deserves from the bench. He is undoubtedly the best choice for District Judge for the 44th District Court.