Account Number

President - Daniel M. Kotin

Daniel M. Kotin is a founding member of Tomasik Kotin Kasserman, LLC. He is an experienced personal injury, wrongful death and medical malpractice attorney.

Within the Chicago Bar Association (CBA), he serves on the Association's Finance Committee. Over the years, he has chaired multiple committees of the CBA and served as a director of the Young Lawyers Section. He is also involved in the Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, where he is a member of the Board of Managers and was previously the Chairman of the Association's Seminar Planning Committee. In addition, he is currently the President of The Society of Trial Lawyers.

He is on the faculty at Loyola University School of Law. He also is the President of the Board of Governors for the law school and serves as a Co-Chair of its Circle of Advocates. He is on the faculty at the National Institute for Trial Advocacy where he teaches trial skills to lawyers in an annual program. He has been appointed by the Supreme Court of Illinois and serves on the Hearing Board of the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission.

In 2002, he was recognized and profiled by Chicago's Law Bulletin Publishing Company as one of "40 Illinois Attorneys Under Forty to Watch". He was honored by the Lawdragon as one of "500 New Stars, New World," in 2006. He is a member of The National Trial Lawyers, an organization comprised of the top 100 trial lawyers from each state. He is currently profiled as one of the Top 5% of Civil Trial Lawyers in Illinois by the Leading Lawyers Network, has been designated an "Illinois Super Lawyer" and maintains an AV rating - the highest possible rating for any attorney - from the Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory.


1st Vice President - Hon. Thomas R. Mulroy

Hon. Thomas R. Mulroy has been on the bench since 2007 and sits in the Law Division, Commercial Section. Prior to becoming a judge, he was an Assistant United States Attorney in Chicago and then a partner at Jenner & Block. He was a commercial trial lawyer with a national practice representing clients in complex litigation in the state and federal courts. He has written and taught on trial practice issues, including evidence, expert witnesses and discovery. He is a Fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers and a member of the Board of Governors of Loyola University School of Law and a Member Board of Managers, Chicago Bar Association. In addition, Judge Mulroy was

  • Special Counsel, Attorney Registration & Disciplinary Commission
  • Chairman, ABA Civil Procedure & Evidence Committee
  • Director, Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education
  • Director and Life Member, Illinois Bar Foundation
  • Chicago Bar Association: Committee on Evaluation of Judicial Candidates; Committee to Evaluate Federal Judges
  • Adjunct Professor of Law, trial practice: Loyola University, Northwestern University and DePaul University
  • Lecturer: Northwestern School of Law, Scientific Evidence


2nd Vice President - Steven M. Elrod

Steven M. Elrod, a partner at Holland & Knight, represents private and public sector clients on land use, zoning and real estate matters. He is chairman of the firm's National Land Use and Government Team and is the executive partner of the firm's Chicago office. He also served on Holland & Knight's national directors committee for two consecutive terms.

He is the corporation counsel for the City of Highland Park, Ill., and the village attorney for the Villages of Northbrook, Glencoe, Lincolnwood and Carpentersville, Ill. He is also actively involved in the general representation of the firm's more than two dozen Chicago area local government clients.

He has extensive experience in the litigation of land use issues, including eminent domain; regulatory taking and inverse condemnation; RLUIPA; the First Amendment and the Second Amendment. He successfully argued a religious land use case before the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.

His many charitable and civic efforts include currently serving on the board of the Chicago Bar Foundation, which funds pro bono legal services organizations, and serving as chairman of the board of directors of the Constitutional Rights Foundation Chicago, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing law-related and civic education to elementary and high school students.

A frequent speaker and author, his topics are usually land use and local government issues. He is an adjunct law professor at Northwestern University School of Law, where he teaches Local Government and Land Use Law. In 2013, he received the Outstanding Adjunct Professor Award. He is consistently ranked among the best lawyers in the nation by the legal guides Chambers USA and Best Lawyers in America. His many honors and awards include the Tree of Life Award for Civic Service from the Jewish National Fund in 2007, and the Lecturer of Merit Award from the National College of District Attorneys.

Steven Elrod earned his bachelors degree from Tulane University, magna cum laude, and his J.D. from Northwestern University School of Law, J.D.


Treasurer - Maurice Grant


Secretary - Jesse H. Ruiz

Jesse H. Ruiz is a partner at Drinker Biddle & Reath, where he serves as Marketing Partner, and is a member of the firm's Client Service Committee. He practices in the Corporate and Securities Group and focuses on business transactions. In addition, he counsels clients on corporate finance issues; negotiation of consulting and other commercial agreements; reorganizations; corporate compliance; corporate governance issues; employment matters; and the formation of business entities in the United States, Latin America and Europe.

He also serves as legal counsel to the Illinois Legislative Latino Caucus and the Illinois Legislative Latino Caucus Foundation. In 2003, and again in 2009, he received the Foundation's Leadership Award for providing legal counsel to both the Foundation and the Caucus, and assisting in the formation of both organizations.

For many years, he has focused his civic involvement in public education. Currently, he serves as Vice President of the Chicago Board of Education and as a member of the U.S. Department of Education Equity and Excellence Commission. He has previously served as chairman of the Illinois State Board of Education and on the Chicago Public Schools Desegregation Monitoring Commission.

His involvement in the legal community includes serving on the American Bar Association's Commission on Hispanic Legal Rights and Responsibilities. He is a past president of the Hispanic Lawyers Association of Illinois and past chairman of the Hispanic Lawyers Scholarship Fund of Illinois. He is also past chairman of the Chicago Committee on Minorities in Large Law Firms. He taught corporate law as an Adjunct Professor of Corporate Law at John Marshall Law School. He also serves on several other civic and charitable boards and committees.

His many awards and honors include the 2002 Barristers Philanthropic Award from Lawyers Lend-A-Hand to Youth for his work in education advocacy and youth mentoring; the 2007 Education Excellence Award from El Valor; the 2005 Education Award from Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White; and the 2005 Vanguard Award from the Chicago Bar Association. In 2003, he was named in the Crain's Chicago Business list of "40 Under 40 Rising Stars in Chicago Business." That same year, he was recognized by Chicago Lawyer magazine as one of the "40 Attorneys Under 40 in Illinois to Watch" and was selected by Chicago United to be featured in its first "Business Leaders of Color" publication, featured in the October 13, 2003 issue of Crain's Chicago Business.

He earned his J.D. from The University of Chicago Law School, where he served as an editor of the University of Chicago Law School Roundtable, and his B.A. in economics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

CBA Board of Managers


Immediate Past President - Patricia Brown Holmes

Patricia Brown Holmes is a founding partner at Riley Safer Holmes & Cancila LLP. A trial attorney whose practice focuses on white-collar criminal investigations, she is a former federal, state and local prosecutor and state court judge.

Her criminal and civil litigation experience includes handling matters involving financial and accounting fraud, mail and wire fraud, corporate whistle-blower allegations and hot-line calls, contract disputes and other complex commercial litigation. She has also lectured on and completed internal investigations involving the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA).

Judge Holmes also has extensive experience conducting internal investigations at public and private entities and has conducted many highly sensitive and confidential investigations involving high-level executives. She has represented special committees and boards of directors in a variety of internal investigations.

During her career, she has often been tasked by government officials to assist in investigating sensitive matters. She was appointed by Illinois Governor Pat Quinn to chair the Illinois Torture Inquiry and Relief Commission; the investigation of the City of Chicago's fire commissioner for sexual harassment; the alleged cover up by the executive director of the Office of Compliance; and the 2010 investigation of the Burr Oak Cemetery scandal as chair of the governor's Cemetery Oversight Task Force. That investigation led to new legislation regarding cemetery oversight and the funeral industry. She is also a member of Senator Dick Durbin's judicial commission to investigate backgrounds and select federal judges and the U.S. Marshal for the Northern District of Illinois.

She is a frequent commentator and widely published legal writer and an active member of several Bar Associations. She is an adjunct professor of law at Northwestern University School of Law, Loyola Institute for Paralegal Studies, and an instructor at the Attorney General's Advocacy Institute Criminal Trial Advocacy Section of the U.S. Department of Justice.

Her many awards include the Visionary Award from the Black Women Lawyers Association; the Illinois Judicial Council Distinguished Service Award; the National Bar Association's Judicial Council Special Chair Award; the University of Illinois Seaberry Award for Service to the Legal Community and the University's Outstanding Alumni Award for Public Service; a peer review award from Illinois Leading Lawyers Network; and the Award for Excellence in Pro Bono Service from the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois/Federal Bar Association, Chicago Chapter.

She has also been named by several publications and organizations to their lists of outstanding attorneys in the commercial litigation, white collar and criminal defense practices. In 2011, the National Diversity Council named her "One of the Most Powerful and Influential Women of Illinois."

Judge Holmes earned her Bachelor's degree and her J. D. from the University of Illinois.


Ashly Iacullo Boesche

Ashly Iacullo Boesche is a partner at Pattishall McAuliffe where she practices intellectual property law. She concentrates her practice on trademark, copyright, and domain name cases. Before coming to Pattishall, she worked for many years as a law clerk and litigation specialist.

While she handles all facets of non-patent intellectual property law, she has a strong background litigating in federal courts across the country and before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board. She has handled cases involving trademark and trade dress infringement, false advertising, copyright infringement and misappropriation of trade secrets. She has extensive experience with discovery of electronically stored information.

She is an Adjunct Professor at Chicago-Kent College of Law, teaching a course on trademarks and unfair competition. She also coaches the Chicago-Kent College of Law teams that compete annually in the International Trademark Association's Saul Lefkowitz Moot Court Competition. In her debut year, 2014, one of her teams won First Place and Best Brief at regionals and won Fourth Place at the national championship.

Her many honors and professional awards include the 2010 David C. Hilliard Award for Outstanding Committee Chair of the Young Lawyers Section of the CBA. She was recognized in 2010, 2012 and 2014 as an Illinois "Rising Star" by Illinois Super Lawyers Magazine. In 2011, she was invited to attend the American College of Trial Lawyers' annual meeting in La Quinta, California, at which the Pattishall firm was honored "for representing the College with Honor and Distinction"; she had served as counsel for the College in an important domain name case.

At the CBA, she has served as both Chair and Vice Chair of the Intellectual Property Committee. She has also served the CBA's Young Lawyers Section as both Secretary and Treasurer.

In law school, she served as Editor-in-Chief for the Journal of Intellectual Property, and received the 2005 Bar and Gavel Award, which honors graduating students who have given outstanding service to the law school, the community and the law profession. She also won the 2003 CALI Award for Excellence in Trial Advocacy.

She holds a B.A. from DePaul University and received her J.D. from IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law.


Alan R. Borlack

Alan R. Borlack is a partner in the law firm of Bailey Borlack Nadelhoffer LLC. He has represented parties in complex commercial and business litigation, arbitration and appeals since he first began practicing law at Mayer Brown & Platt after graduation from law school. He has handled virtually every kind of case, many involving sophisticated issues and sizeable amounts. He has also represented, pro-bono, the community surrounding Wrigley Field where he successfully led the defense against the Chicago Cubs suit to declare unconstitutional the then existing laws that banned lights at Wrigley Field. He has appeared before the Illinois Supreme Court on five occasions as well as state and federal appellate courts.

For many years, he has been a frequent speaker on litigation topics at legal organizations including the CBA and the St. Louis Bar Association.

He is the immediate past Chair of the CBA Animal Law Committee where he pursued his personal passion for animal welfare. He is currently Chair of the CBA Civil Practice Committee.

His community service includes membership on the Board of Directors of the Cameron Kravitt Foundation, which provides grants to leading medical schools to help teach young pediatricians how to handle grief when a child dies. He is also a member of the Political Council of the Humane Society Legislative Fund that is devoted to animal welfare matters.

He received his B.A. from the University of Michigan, with High Distinction, and his J.D. from Harvard Law School, cum laude.


Maureen E. Connors

Justice Maureen E. Connors has served in the First District of the Illinois Appellate Court since 2010. Prior to her election to the Appellate Court, she served since 1988 as a judge. In the Cook County Circuit Court Probate Division, she heard the Adult Disabled Calendar; she also sat in the Domestic Violence and Traffic Courts and handled a variety of court calls in the Fifth Municipal District of the Circuit Court.

Active in the legal community, she has served many law related organizations. She currently mentors and trains new judges for the Circuit Court. She has also served the CBA Probate Bar Committee and Young Lawyers Section and its Elder Law Committee. She has served as Chair of the Illinois Judicial Conference Committee on Discovery and is a member of its Committee on Education. She has lectured extensively on topics related to guardianship issues, including for the National Guardianship Association National Conference; the National Association of Elder Law Attorneys; and for the Chicago Bar Association. She has also lectured on Illinois' new e-discovery rules.

While in the Probate Division, Justice Connors was instrumental, along with the Chicago Bar Foundation and Chicago Volunteer Legal Services, in establishing the first formal pro bono Guardian ad Litem (GAL) program. This program allowed attorneys to provide free legal services to respondents for Guardianship who were unable to provide the funds to pay Court-appointed Guardian ad Litem fees. This program served a great function in providing that pro se parents of disabled children often would not have to bring their 18 year-old child downtown to the Daley Center to be questioned by the Court. Instead, the pro bono GAL would visit the respondent at his or her home and provide the alleged disabled person with the reading of their rights; the GAL would then advise the Court of any problems they observed and any objection from the respondent. The program was a great success and still is up and running in the Probate Division.

Justice Connors' community involvement includes serving on the Queen of Peace High School Board, and as President and Chair of the Irish Fellowship Club of Chicago Board. She was a member of the Task Force on the Illinois Domestic Violence Act and served as a tutor for Chicago's Mercy Home for Boys and Girls. Her many honors and awards include the 2009 Court of Honor Award from the Chicago Volunteer Legal Services and the Constance Morris House Domestic Violence Service Award in 1991, 1992, and 1993.

She earned her B.A. from Loyola University Chicago and her J.D. from Illinois Institute of Technology's Chicago Kent College of Law.


Mary K. Curry

Mary K. Curry received her B.A. from the University of Iowa in 1999 and graduated from Loyola University Chicago School of Law in 2005. Immediately following law school she clerked for the Honorable Patrick E. McGann followed by a clerkship with James F. Henry in the Chancery Division of the Circuit Court of Cook County for two years. In 2007, Mary began clerking for the Honorable Susan E. Cox, a United States Magistrate Judge in the Northern District of Illinois, where she is currently.

Mary's involvement in The Chicago Bar Association began in 2005 when she served as the Young Lawyers Division Chair for the Mental Health & Disability Law Committee for two years. Following that position, Mary joined the Young Lawyers Division's board serving as Secretary, Special Project Coordinator, Project Officer, and as Vice-Chair.


Hon. Thomas M. Durkin

Thomas M. Durkin became a United States District Judge for the Northern District of Illinois on January 14, 2013, having been nominated by President Barack Obama on May 21, 2012. Before taking the bench, he was a partner in the law firm of Mayer Brown LLP from 1993 to 2013, specializing in complex commercial litigation, white collar criminal defense, and internal investigations.

Prior to joining Mayer he served as a law clerk to the Honorable Stanley J. Roszkowski of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois from 1978 to 1980. After his clerkship, Judge Durkin served as an Assistant United States Attorney in Chicago from 1980 to 1993, where he held positions as First Assistant US Attorney, Chief of the Special Prosecutions Division, Chief of the Criminal Receiving and Appellate Division, and Deputy Chief of the Special Prosecutions Division. While an Assistant United States Attorney he tried over 50 jury trials.

He has held many roles as a volunteer in the legal community including serving on the Board of the Legal Assistance Foundation from 1999 to 2008. He has also been a Fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers since 2000. In 2015, he was appointed by U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts to the Committee on Federal-State Jurisdiction of the Judicial Conference of the United States.

He earned a J.D. degree with honors from DePaul University College of Law in 1978 and a B.S. degree in accounting with honors from the University of Illinois in 1975.


Hon. Timothy C. Evans

Timothy C. Evans serves as the Chief Judge of the Circuit Court of Cook County, the largest of the 24 judicial circuits in Illinois and also one of the largest unified court systems in the world. More than I million cases are filed annually in the Circuit Court of Cook County, which serves Cook County's 5.1 million residents.

Chief Judge Evans oversees the circuit's approximately 400 judges whom he assigns throughout the court's ten divisions and six geographic districts. He also oversees an annual budget of approximately $240.1 million and approximately 2,958 employees who work in 14 non-judicial offices providing probation and other court-related services.

Chief Judge Evans was first elected Chief Judge in September 200 I by unanimous vote of the circuit judges. He was re-elected to a second term in September 2004, a third in September 2007, a fourth term in 2010, and a fifth term in 2013. Only the fourth person to serve as Chief Judge of the Circuit Court of Cook County, he also is the first African American to serve in the position.

As Chief Judge, Evans has brought sweeping reforms to the court that are both innovative and compassionate. His efforts include critical changes to pretrial services operations, a new Domestic Violence Courthouse, and the creation of the two court-wide divisions dedicated to hearing only domestic violence matters and elder law matters. He also has significantly expanded the use of specialty/treatment courts dedicated to mental health treatment, veterans support, drug treatment, and support to persons charged with prostitution.

Under his leadership, there has been an unparalleled growth in free legal services for low-income, self­ represented litigants, including a free mediation program to help homeowners facing foreclosure. Also, the court's national reputation for its highly effective alternatives to incarceration for young people in trouble continues to grow.

Chief Judge Evans has expanded court services to children with innovative drop-off child care centers that provide a safe, court-based haven for children whose parents or guardians are attending court.

Since he assumed office initially in 2001, there also has been an unprecedented expansion of the Chief Judge's duties by state and local government to include administration of the Juvenile Temporary Detention Center and the Office of Official Court Reporters.

Throughout his career, Chief Judge Evans has been an outspoken voice for equal opportunities for women and minorities. At the court's executive level, in particular, he has championed excellence and diversity. Women and minorities comprise half of the 17 divisions and district presiding judges he has appointed.

Chief Judge Evans is a 1965 graduate of the University of Illinois. He received his J.D. from The John Marshall Law School, Chicago, Illinois, in 1969.

Upon graduation from John Marshall, Chief Judge Evans embarked on a lifelong pursuit of public service. He first entered local city government in 1969 when he joined the City of Chicago's Law Department as an assistant corporation counsel. He later joined the City of Chicago's Department of Investigations, rising to deputy commissioner. In 1973, he was elected to the Chicago City Council representing the 4th Ward, a position he held for 18 years while maintaining a private practice.

With the election of Harold Washington as mayor of Chicago in 1983, Chief Judge Evans assumed the coveted post of floor leader of the Chicago City Council. He also chaired several major City Council committees, including those on Finance, Budget, and Health.

In 1992, Chief Judge Evans won election to the Cook County judiciary as a circu it judge. Within three years of joining the court, he was appointed the presiding judge of the Domestic Relations Division. Five years later in 2000, he was appointed presiding judge of the Law Division where he served until his election as Chief Judge.

He has been honored with dozens of distinguished service and humanitarian awards and has had academic scholarships established in his name. In 2009, he became the first judge from Illinois to receive the William H. Rehnquist Award for Jud icial Excellence from the National Center for State Courts. The award is one of the most prestigious judicial honors in the country and has been presented annually since 1996 by the Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court.

In January 2010, he was named by the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin as one of the "10 Attorneys Who Raised The Bar Over the Last Decade."


Hon. Shelvin Louise Marie Hall

Hon. Shelvin Louise Marie Hall was the first African-American female Chair of the Executive Committee of the First District, Illinois Appellate Court.

After training in Civil Rights Law by the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc., she entered private practice in Houston, Tex. She spent six years in the firm she founded with four others, which was the first all-black, all-female law firm in the country. In 1980, she went to Washington, D.C. as Legislative Director to U.S. Congressman Mickey Leland (D-TX). In 1982, she returned to her hometown of Chicago to serve as General Counsel to the Illinois Department of Human Rights, where she directed a staff of 12 attorneys and six administrative personnel.

She was appointed to the Circuit Court of Cook County in 1991 and was assigned to the Domestic Relations Division. In 1992, she was elected to a six-year term. In 1995, she joined the Law Division, presiding over civil jury trials. She was retained for a second six-year term in November of 1998. The Illinois Supreme Court then assigned her to a two-year term as a Justice of the Illinois Appellate Court. She was elected to a full 10-year term on the Court in November 2000 in a contested race, and was retained for a second 10-year term in November of 2010. She has served as Presiding Justice of both the First Division and Fourth Division of the First District Appellate Court, on the Mediation Committee and as Chair of the Court's Executive Committee.

She has been active her whole career in several legal associations. She served from 1997 - 1999, first as Chair-Elect and then as the Chair, of the Judicial Council of the National Bar Association (NBA), a national organization for African-American judges. She also served the NBA as a National Vice President, Chair of the Young Lawyers Division, Chair of the Administrative Law Section, and as a member of the Women Lawyers Division, the Executive Committee, and the Board of Governors. She was the creator of the Interdenominational Prayer Breakfast in 1985.

She is a past Chair of the Illinois Judicial Council; former President of the Houston Lawyers Association; Vice President of the Cook County Bar Association; and has served on the boards of the Cook County Bar Association, the Lutheran Family Mission, and the Legal Assistance Foundation of Chicago. She is a founding member of the Just the Beginning Foundation, and has served on the American Bar Associationâ??s: Gavel and Awards Committee, State Justice Initiatives Committee, and as is a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation.

Justice Hall was the first woman judge on the Executive Committee of the Illinois Judicial Conference and is currently serving a second term on the Executive and Education Committees. She also was a member of the Supreme Court Committee on Rule 23; and is a member of the Illinois Judges Association, the National Association of Women Judges, the Illinois State Bar Association, the Cook County Bar Association, the Women's Bar Association, the Black Women Lawyers Association of Greater Chicago, the Chicago Bar Association, the American Bar Association and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.

A devoted member of the Friendship Baptist Church, where her late father, Rev. Dr. Shelvin Jerome Hall, served as Pastor for 51 years, she has served the church in numerous capacities. Justice Hall and her sister, Justice L. Priscilla Hall, are the nationâ??s first African American Appellate Court sister justices. Her many awards and honors include: the CBAâ??s Earl Burrus Dickerson Award; Sweet Holy Spirit Churchâ??s Justice of the Year Award; The DuSable Museum Women's Boardâ??s Dr. Margaret Burroughs Legacy Award; Barnes and Thornburgâ??s Black History's Living Legends; Mahogany Scholarship Heritage Foundationâ??s Black Heritage Award - Excellence in Law and Public Service; Lawndale Christian Development Corporation, Westside Federation of Chicago, Safeway Companiesâ?? Dr. King Legacy Partners: Legacy Award; the Unity Dinner Advocate for Diversity Award; the Liberty Achievement Award from the American Bar Association - Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section; and Boston University School of Lawâ??s Lifetime Achievement Award.

Other honors have been bestowed by: the Illinois Judicial Council, Black Women Lawyers Association of Greater Chicago, the National Bar Association, The Friendship Baptist Church, The Honorable Dorothy Brown Clerk of the Circuit Court of Cook County and The Clerk's Office Women's Advisory Committee, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, The African American Advisory Council of The Cook County State's Attorney Office, Woman's Bar Association of Illinois, National Council of Negro Women, Chicago Midwest Section, State of Illinois Office of Secretary of State Jesse White, History Makers, Lawndale Peopleâ??s Planning and Action Committee and Pyramidwest Development Corp., Westside Holistic Family Services, Faith Community Baptist Church, Loyola University Chicago School of Law, Cook County Bar Association, Rainbow Push Coalition, Top Ladies of Distinction, Illinois Affirmative Action Officers Association, Chicago Baptist Institute, Being Single Magazine, National Association of Real Estate Brokers, "We Women," Baptist General State Convention of Illinois, Operation Uplift, Inc. of Maywood, IL, Illinois Non-Profit Enforcement and Outreach Project, and One Church, One Child.

A resident of Chicago, she is a graduate of Proviso East High School, Maywood, Illinois; Hampton University, Hampton, Virginia; and Boston University School of Law, Boston, Massachusetts.


Robert F. Harris

Robert F. Harris was appointed Cook County Public Guardian by Chief Judge of the Circuit Court of Cook County, Timothy C. Evans, on December 1, 2004. The Cook County Public Guardianâ??s Office is the only office of its kind in the United States. It combines the legal representation of abused and neglected children, children in divorce cases, and cognitively disabled elderly persons. Its staff of over 230 employees is comprised of approximately 115 lawyers with a cadre of case managers, paralegals, financial personnel, investigators, a nurse, a psychologist, support staff and others that help the office to fulfill its statutory responsibilities for approximately 8,000 child clients and adults under his guardianship.

Before beginning his career with the Public Guardian in 1991, he worked at the Cabrini Green Legal Aid Clinic while still a law student. There, he represented Cabrini residents in civil, criminal and juvenile matters. Prior to attending law school, he worked as an engineer with Westinghouse Electric Corporation and Honeywell, Inc.

A nationally known presenter, lecturer and panelist on issues regarding children or the elderly, he has also testified before State of Illinois and United States legislative committees on these issues. He is a sought after commentator in such media outlets as the Chicago Sun-Times, Chicago Tribune, Chicago Defender, Chicago Law Bulletin, WVON-AM, CNN, Prime Time, ABC, NBC, FOX, CLTV, Chicago Tonight and Nâ??Digo Magapaper.

He has been honored with awards and recognition from many organizations including: DePaul University College of Law, Reclaim A Youth Foundation, The Cook County Juvenile Court African American History Committee, Cook County Bar Association, National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, Whoâ??s Who in Black Chicago, and Quinn Chapel AME Church. He was also a 2007 Fellow in Leadership Greater Chicago.

His civic and community efforts include serving on the boards of DePaul College of Law Schiller Ducanto & Fleck Family Law Center, HIV-AIDS Legal Council for Health Justice, Leadership Greater Chicago Fellows Associate Board, and CARPLS. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, in Industrial Engineering, and his J.D. from DePaul College of Law.


Matthew T. Jenkins

Matthew T. Jenkins joined the Chicago law firm of Corboy & Demetrio as a personal injury lawyer in 2008. He practices personal injury law in all areas including cases arising from automobile collisions, construction negligence, premises liability and product liability.

Before returning to Corboy & Demetrio, where he clerked while attending law school, he practiced plaintiffs' civil rights law at Loevy & Loevy in Chicago. While at Loevy, he assisted in obtaining a $4 million verdict in a significant civil rights case on his very first trial.

In 2013, he was named to "40 Illinois Attorneys Under Forty to Watch," by the Law Bulletin publishing Company. He heads Corboy & Demetrio's Pro Bono department.

As a student at IIT Chicago- Kent College of Law, he was recognized for both his academic achievements and his commitment to public service. In 2013, he was honored with the law school's Young Alumni Award. And in 2005, Chicago-Kent honored him for his personal dedication to public service by naming him a Public Interest Law Initiative Scholar.

He is an active member of the American Bar Association, the American Association for Justice and the Illinois Trial Lawyers Association where he currently serves as Co-Chair of the Young Lawyers Committee. He also sits on the Illinois State Bar Association's Judicial Evaluation Committee.

He is Past President and current Member of the Board of Directors of the Center for Disability & Elder Law. In 2012, at the age of 30, he was the youngest Board President in CDEL's history. He is a Co-Chair of the Young Alumni Committee of the Alumni Board at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law. In 2010, he was selected as the Illinois Pro Bono Attorney of the Month by Illinois Legal Aid Online (ILAO) for the volunteer legal work he has done.

He currently serves as Member Service Manager after previously serving as Public Service Manager in the Chicago Bar Association's Young Lawyer Division, also sitting on its Executive Committee. In addition, he sits on the CBA's Auxiliary Board of Lawyer's Lend-a-Hand to Youth.

He holds a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania and a J.D. from IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law.


Michele M. Jochner

Michele M. Jochner is a partner with the matrimonial law firm Schiller DuCanto & Fleck LLP. Prior to joining the firm, she served for 15 years as a judicial law clerk to two Justices of the Illinois Supreme Court: the late Hon. Mary Ann G. McMorrow and the Hon. Charles E. Freeman. She has served in a number of bar leadership roles, including as Chair of the CBAâ??s Public Affairs Committee and as a member of the Executive Committee of the CBAâ??s Alliance for Women.

A recognized legal scholar, expert writer and educator to law students and attorneys, she has been honored by her peers in "Best Lawyers in Americaâ?쳌 and in â??Super Lawyers,â?쳌 as a "Leading Lawyer" who ranks in the top 100 Women Consumer Lawyers in Illinois, and as the recipient of the 2015 Top Women Lawyers in Leadership Award by the Women's Bar Association of Illinois.

She is the author of nearly 200 articles on a wide array of legal topics appearing in publications nationwide, and her two columns, â??Law From a Different Perspectiveâ?쳌 and "On Appeal," appear regularly in the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin. In addition, she is listed in several â??Whoâ??s Whoâ?쳌 publications, and was previously recognized as one of â??40 Illinois Attorneys Under 40 to Watchâ?쳌 by the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin. She regularly speaks on legal issues to various groups across the state, including seminars on effective legal writing, appellate advocacy, and family law. She has also served as an adjunct professor at both DePaul University College of Law and The John Marshall Law School. In a testament to her career-long commitment to legal education, the Illinois Supreme Court appointed her Vice-Chair of its Minimum Continuing Legal Education (MCLE) Board.

Kathryn Carso Liss

While in law school, Kathryn Carso Liss attended a comparative family law course in Granada, Spain, was a dean's scholar, and authored a published Law Review article. She began practicing law in May 2007 and has practiced exclusively in the area of family law. She is currently an attorney at the Law Offices of Jean Conde, PC.

Her focus is in domestic relations with the goal of assisting families through difficult transition periods while attempting to educate clients and minimize the length of the process. She assists clients with the adoption process, divorce proceedings, paternity matters, orders of protection, and as a Cook County Circuit Court appointed Child's Representative, Guardian ad Litem, and Attorney for the Child. She has been named a â??Rising Starâ?쳌 by Super Lawyers, an annual publication of Thomson Reuters and the publishers of Chicago Magazine, completed mediation training at Northwestern University as well as litigation training at the Houston Family Law Trial Institute program. She also teaches adoption law as an adjunct professor at DePaul University College of Law.

The current Chair of the Young Lawyers Section of the Chicago Bar Association, she is a graduate of Miami University, Oxford, Ohio and holds a law degree from DePaul University in Chicago.


Pamela Sakowicz Menaker

Pamela Sakowicz Menaker is the Communications Partner at Clifford Law Offices. As an attorney with two degrees in journalism from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism, she combines her experience in these two fields in handling the press in the many high-profile cases handled by the firm including the month-long trial of internationally-claimed violinist Rachel Barton who was severely injured by a Metra train, the fire at the Cook County Administration Building, the scaffolding collapse at the John Hancock Building, the porch collapse in Chicago that killed 13 and injured dozens of others and most recently an international press conference held in Boston involving seven of the eight circus performers who were injured when a "human chandelier" act collapsed in Rhode Island during a Ringling Brothers performance. Since 2006, she has spearheaded the continuing legal education programs at Clifford Law Office, which draw nearly 4,000 registrants, perhaps the largest CLE program in the state.

Upon graduating from Northwestern Universityâ??s Medill School of Journalism with both bachelorâ??s and masterâ??s degrees, she worked as a reporter for the Chicago Tribune. She then moved to ABC-TV where she worked for the local affiliate in Chicago as a writer/producer for the local news. She also created the column â??Prelude in Nâ?쳌 for North Shore Magazine, which she wrote for two years. She has been a correspondent and political speech writer in the nation's capital as well as a producer/writer for Tribune Entertainment and the New York Times Corporation where she worked on a pilot for a news magazine program. She is an adjunct professor in Medillâ??s graduate program where she teaches a class â??Law, Policy and Ethics of Marketing.â?쳌

She also has been very involved in legal writing since her graduation from Loyola University School of Law where she was selected as the first night student to participate in the national Moot Court competition. After being sworn in as an attorney in Illinois, she represented criminal defendants before the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals where she is certified to practice. She also was selected as an extern attorney and worked in the Cook County State's Attorney's Office, Consumer Fraud Division.

A member of the editorial board for the Chicago Bar Record, she has served as its book review editor since 2000. In 2006, she was appointed to serve as Co-Chair of the CBA's Pro Bono Week Committee, and serves on the CBAâ??s Judicial Evaluation Committee and its Public Affairs Committee.

She is involved in various bar associations including the American Bar Association (ABA) where she was Co-Chair of the Section of Litigation's Written Materials Committee, a member of the Human Trafficking Task Force and other positions involving the publication of materials for that 60,000 member section. She also served as Co-Chair of the Annual Meeting in Chicago in 2005, helping organize the dozens of programs and written materials accompanying the continuing legal education seminars. She served as an editor on the prestigious quarterlies Litigation Journal and Litigation News. Most recently, she was appointed to a three-year term on the ABA Standing Committee on Strategic Communications.

In 2016, she was elected to a three-year term on the Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA) Board of Governors where she is Board Liaison to the ARDC, Human Rights, and Membership and Marketing committees. She has served six years in the ISBA Assembly. In 2006, she was tapped to serve as the Co-Chair of the Host Committee for the Illinois Bar Foundation's Annual Gala Affair. She also has served a number of years on the Illinois Bar Journal, the ISBAâ??s member publication.


Paul Ochmanek, Jr.

Paul Ochmanek is an active trial lawyer who advises condominium and homeowner associations on all aspects of corporate law including but not limited to; turnover, amendments to declarations and by-laws, rule adoption and enforcement, adopting special assessments, assessment collection, foreclosures and bankruptcy issues. His practice is focused on representing condominium and homeowner associations and includes prosecuting unit owner violations of the governing documents and ensuring unit owners pay assessments/special assessments. He has extensive experience defending condominium associations from actions involving building code violations brought before the City of Chicago. Moreover he handles numerous residential transactions.

On a personal note, he and his wife, Kaitlin, live in Chicago. They are preparing to celebrate their two year anniversary this summer.


Eileen M. O'Connor

Eileen M. O'Connor has been handling plaintiff's personal injury cases since her graduation from law school in 2006. She joined O'Connor Law Group, LLC with her brother and her father in 2010. She has tried multiple cases to jury verdict, including cases involving motor vehicle collisions, premises liability, railroad negligence, police misconduct, and medical negligence. She has secured substantial settlements in wrongful death, medical malpractice, automobile, and nursing home litigation cases.

Prior to joining the firm, she worked for Ambrose & Cushing, P.C. As an associate, she handled all types of personal injury matters; including, medical negligence and nursing home neglect, construction negligence and premises liability, products liability, automobile collisions, and wrongful death matters.

While in law school, she externed for Judge James Flannery, Circuit Court of Cook County. Additionally, she worked as a law clerk at Hofeld & Schafner from 2003 - 2006.

She is extremely active in the legal community, serving as Chair and Vice Chair of the CBA's Tort Litigation Committee. She was also selected to serve on the CBA's Judicial Evaluation Committee, which interviews and investigates all judicial candidates running for vacancies in Cook County.

She also gives her professional time and expertise to represent clients in pro bono litigation matters. Two memorable pro bono cases were representation of a criminal juvenile defendant in an aggravated assault case, and representing a 5-year-old boy who sustained burns on over 85% of his body in an auto accident.

A frequent presenter at MCLE seminars, she speaks most often in the areas of tort law and Medicare related issues. Apart from her work with the CBA, she is also an active member of the Illinois Trial Lawyers Association (ITLA) and currently serves on the ISBA Assembly.

She earned her bachelors degree from the University of Illinois, cum laude, and her J.D. from Chicago Kent College of Law, cum laude.


Matthew Passen

Matthew A. Passen, partner with Passen Law Group, focuses his practice on personal injury and wrongful death cases. In 2014, he was named one of the "Top 40 Litigation Lawyers Under 40" in the state of Illinois by the Americnn Society of Legal Advocates, and has consistently been named a "Rising Star" by Super Lawyers magazine in 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015.

Prior to joining Passen Law Group, he was an associate at Jenner & Block LLP. During law school, he was a judicial clerk for the Honorable Ronald A. Guzman, United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. He also interned with the United States Attorney's Office, Northern District of Illinois.

Active in both local and national bar associations, he currently chairs the CBA Young Lawyers Section (YLS) and serves on the Chicago Bar Foundation's Young Professionals Board (YPB) which he served as President in 2014. He is also Vice-Chair of the Trial Techniques Committee and Automobile Law Committee for the American Bar Association, Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section (TIPS).

He is a member of the Board of Managers of the Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, as well as the Board of Governors of the American Association for Justice, New Lawyers Division. He is a past member of the Board of Directors of the United Cerebral Palsy Association of Greater Chicago, and serves on the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago's Associate Board and Illinois Legal Aid Online's Young Professionals Board.

He graduated with high honors (magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa) in Economics from the University of Michigan, where he played four years of hockey as a member of the University of Michigan Club Hockey Team.

He earned his J.D. (summa cum laude, Order of the Coif) from DePaul University College of Law.


Howard S. Suskin

Howard S. Suskin is a partner in Jenner & Block's Litigation department and Co-Chair of the firm's Securities Litigation practice and its Class Action practice. He represents both individuals and business entities in civil and criminal securities matters, including class actions alleging securities fraud and misrepresentation claims, derivative actions claiming breach of fiduciary duty, contests for corporate control, insider trading investigations, and broker-dealer issues.

He also serves as an arbitrator with the American Arbitration Association, and for self-regulatory organizations including the Chicago Board Options Exchange, FINRA and the National Futures Association. He is an active member of the American Bar Association Securities Law Committee, including serving as Co-Chair of the Class and Derivative Actions Subcommittee.

A past member of the CBA Board, he currently serves as the CBA's General Counsel. He has also served the CBA as chairman of the Class Action Committee, Bench & Bar Committee, Financial & Investment Services Committee, and the Securities Law Committee. He is a member of the Advisory Board of Board IQ, a Financial Times publication, and The Deal. He has also served as a member of the Securities Editorial Advisory Board of Law360, and serves on the faculty of the Practicing Law Institute.

He has lectured extensively and has published numerous treatises and articles on issues relating to arbitrations, class actions and securities law, including serving as editor and co-author of the West Publishing Illinois Civil Litigation Guide, Moore's Federal Civil Motion Practice and Pretrial Civil Litigation, the Illinois Institute of Continuing Legal Education Treatise on Class Actions, and the ABA's Annual Survey of State Class Action Litigation.

Members of the Leading Lawyers Network have consistently recognized his work in several areas including class actions, commercial litigation, alternative dispute resolution, and securities and venture financing law. He has been named one of the "Best Lawyers in America" for commercial litigation, Illinois Super Lawyers has five times named him a "Top 100 Illinois Super Lawyer" and he was named a "Top 10 Illinois Super Lawyer" in 2015.

He earned his bachelors degree from Northwestern University with distinction, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. He received his J.D. with honors from the University of Michigan Law School, where he was a member of the Michigan Law Review.


Nigel F. Telman

Nigel F. Telman is a partner at Proskauer Rose LLP where he leads the employment practice and is co-head of the Employment Litigation & Arbitration Group.

He concentrates his practice on litigating single and class action disputes arising out of claims of workplace harassment and employment discrimination. He also represents employers in collective and class actions involving allegations of wage and hour violations under federal and state law. In addition, he has significant experience defending and enforcing Restrictive Covenant Agreements, as well as protecting employers' trade secrets and other confidential information from misappropriation by former employees through the institution of emergency litigation seeking temporary and permanent injunctive relief. He uses his experience litigating employment-related disputes to counsel clients on effective ways to avoid such litigation. His counseling practice focuses on training and advising clients on ways to improve all aspects of the employment relationship, including techniques on how to make effective hiring decisions; reviewing and revising employment policies, practices and procedures; and advising on employee disciplinary matters, reductions in force and termination decisions.

His awards and honors include being ranked by Chambers USA in Illinois for Labor & Employment; by US Legal 500 for Labor & Employment; named one of the "Nations Most Powerful Employment Attorneys - Top 100" by the Human Resources Executive, Lawdragon and named an Illinois Super Lawyer in 2015.

He volunteers his free time on the Leadership Board of the Art Institute of Chicago and has been named a Distinguished Fellow by the civic organization, Leadership Greater Chicago.

He earned his B.S. from Cornell University School of Industrial & Labor Relations and his J.D. from Boston University School of Law.


Frank G. Tuzzolino

Frank G. Tuzzolino is a sole practitioner with an office on the northwest side of Chicago where he concentrates in Social Security disability law. He currently serves on the Federal Bar Association's Social Security Section Board and is a member of the National Organization of Social Security Representatives and the Illinois State Bar Association. He previously chaired the CBA's Social Security Law Committee and discussed Social Security law as a guest on the CBA's "You and the Law" talk show webcast as part of the CBA's annual Law Day Live celebration. He has also been a frequent guest on several radio programs discussing Social Security law.

He earned his B.A., cum laude, from DePaul University and his J.D. from Loyola University Chicago. While at DePaul, he studied Political Science at the University of Florence's Cesare Alfieri School of Political Science.