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Upholding the rule of law, keeping the district safe, protecting Civil Rights top priorities
GRAND RAPIDS, MI – Today, a formal investiture ceremony was held for United States Attorney Mark A. Totten at the Grand Rapids Center for Community Transformation. Chief United States District Judge Hala Y. Jarbou administered the ceremonial oath of office.
“My focus is on upholding the rule of law, keeping the district safe, and protecting Civil Rights,” Totten said during the ceremony, which was attended by judges, family, and members of the law enforcement, legal, and local communities.
Totten underscored his commitment to addressing violent crime, disrupting the trafficking of narcotics, and protecting democratic institutions.
“I am honored to serve as the United States Attorney for the Western District of Michigan and lead a team of outstanding attorneys and support staff dedicated to protecting our state,” he said recognizing the hard work and dedication of his office.
Totten praised the partnerships his office has with local, state, federal, and tribal agencies. He also noted the importance of working together with the community to continue building trust and strengthening law enforcement and community relations.
As U.S. Attorney, Mr. Totten is the chief federal law enforcement officer in the Western District of Michigan. He supervises a staff of approximately 42 attorneys and 44 support staff. The District covers 49 counties, including the western half of Michigan’s lower peninsula and the whole of the upper peninsula. The main office is in Grand Rapids, but the District also has staffed offices in Lansing and Marquette, and an unstaffed office in Kalamazoo.
Totten was born and raised in Kalamazoo, Michigan, where he lives today. Most recently, he served as Chief Legal Counsel in the Executive Office of the Governor for the State of Michigan. Prior to entering government service, Totten was a law professor at Michigan State University from 2008-2018, where he taught criminal law and criminal procedure. From 2011-2013 he served part-time as a Special Assistant U.S. Attorney handling criminal appeals in the office he now leads. He was a judicial law clerk on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit and began his career as an attorney in the U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Appellate Staff, in Washington, D.C. Totten received his B.A. from Cedarville College and his law degree and a Ph.D. in ethics from Yale University.
Totten was nominated by President Joe Biden on November 12, 2021, and the U.S. Senate confirmed him on April 27, 2022. Chief U.S. District Judge Robert J. Jonker previously administered the official oath of office May 5, 2022 at the federal courthouse in Grand Rapids.
More information about Totten’s priorities and the mission of the office can be viewed in the Strategic Plan.