Michael A. Ventrella was born in Richmond, Virginia in 1958. While in High School, he was active in the debate team (winning the “Best Debator” award), wrote and edited his own school newspaper, hosted the annual student talent show, and wrote a musical comedy that was performed by the school and which was reviewed by the Richmond Times-Dispatch newspaper.
He attended Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, where he graduated cum laude with a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. While in college, he was elected to the Student Senate where he chaired the judiciary committee, was program director of the college radio station, was on the debate team, and was active in various political organizations. He was awarded the prestigious Student Service award in his senior year for his contributions to the school.
He then moved to Boston to attend New England Law, where he was editor of the school newspaper, participated in the moot court program, and was active in local politics.
In 1982, he married his high school sweetheart, award-winning artist Heidi Hooper.
After graduation, he worked as a Public Defender with the Boston Bar Advocate program, taught political science and history courses at Bunker Hill Community College and Curry College, worked as a lobbyist for The Massachusetts Association of Community Colleges and Americans for Democratic Action (where he served as President for a year), and was active in local politics. He also found time to play in numerous bands around the Boston club scene.
He and his wife moved to New York city in 1993 to attempt to start a business but that failed, and they decided to relocate to the beautiful Poconos in 1997.
Mike then worked with attorney H. Clark Connor in Mt. Pocono for a while, and then began work at the Monroe County Public Defender office. Besides criminal defense work, he also represented parents in child custody battles with Monroe County Children and Youth.
After leaving the Public Defender’s Office, Mike began working for the firm of Zito, Martino, and Karasek, where he expanded his experience to include personal injury, real estate, and other legal matters for his clients. In 2004, he was honored to join the Law Office of Mark S. Love, one of the most respected attorneys in the Poconos and one of the top lawyers in Pennsylvania according to the annual listing of “Super Lawyers.” In January of 2008, Mark S. Love retired and Mike took over the practice. In 2014, Mike merged his firm with Fisher & Fisher, which has been rated the #1 firm in the Poconos for the last six years, according to the Pocono Record.
Michael maintains a thriving practice involving criminal matters, licensing appeals, and restraining order cases. He has argued before the Pennsylvania Supreme Court and regularly appears before the Pennsylvania Superior Court and the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court, handling appeals for his clients.
His nonfiction book about the US Constitution was written with Pulitzer Prize winner Darren Bell and was published in 2018. He also writes novels, edits anthologies, and leads the Pocono Writers Group known as the Pocono Liars Club.