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
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
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
Judge Holmes earned her Bachelor's degree and her J. D. from the
University of Illinois.
|First Vice 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
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
|Second 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
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
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,
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
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
|Immediate Past President
Daniel Cotter is Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary for
Fidelity Life Association, A Legal Reserve Life Insurance Company. Prior
to joining Fidelity Life in April 2013, he was a founding partner of
Korey Cotter Heather & Richardson, LLC. Previously, he was Chair of
the Corporate, Transactional and Regulatory Group at Lindemann LLC,
Downers Grove. Other experience includes serving as Vice President and
Deputy General Counsel at Argo Group U.S., Inc. and Senior Counsel with
Unitrin Inc. A certified CPA, he has also worked as an accountant at the
insurance giant, C N A.
He is the 2nd Vice President of the John Marshall Law School Alumni
Association and serves on the Board of Trustees of Monmouth College, the
John Marshall Law School Board of Visitors, the Chicago Bar Foundation,
and the Advisory Council for Alliant Credit Union. He is an adjunct
professor at John Marshall School of Law.
Mr. Cotter's community service includes serving as Chair of the
Edgebrook School District for seven years and currently as vice chair, a
Boy Scouts Eagle Board of Review Chair, and fundraising annually for the
CBA's Lend A Hand-to-Youth program. He is a champion weight lifter in
his spare time and often uses his competitive events to raise money for
charitable causes, including Lend A-Hand-to-Youth. He is a magna cum
laude graduate of Monmouth College, where he earned his Bachelor's
degree in Accounting, and earned his law degree from The John Marshall
Law School, graduating first in his class. At John Marshall, he competed
in the John Marshall/ABA National Criminal Defense Lawyers National Mock
Trial Competition and was an Editor for the Law Review, while working
full-time at CNA as an accountant.
His awards include Monmouth's Distinguished Young Alumnus Award (2001)
and induction into the MClub (sports) Hall of Fame (2002).
|Karina Ayala Bermejo
Karina Ayala Bermejo is currently the General Counsel and Executive Vice
President of Human Resources for Metropolitan Family Services (MFS). MFS
is the oldest and largest non-profit in Illinois. As GC and EVP of HR,
she is responsible for all legal matters and aspects of human resources
Prior to MFS, she worked for the City of Chicago in Mayor Daley's
administration as Acting Commissioner, First Deputy Commissioner and
Managing Deputy Commissioner for the Department of Human Resources.
Prior to working for the City of Chicago, she spent seven years as the
Director of Community Services for the Chicago Bar Association where she
encouraged attorneys to take on pro bono work and collaborated with the
bar and various divisions of the Circuit Court of Cook County on
initiatives to improve the justice system. She also served as the first
Executive Director of the Sun Times Judge Marovitz Lawyers Lend-A-Hand
to Youth Program, a foundation that mobilizes the legal profession
around mentoring youth. She was instrumental in securing a $2 million
dollar cy pres award, the largest in Cook County's history for Lawyers
Lend-A-Hand. Ms. Ayala-Bermejo legal career began as an attorney in the
Litigation Division of the Chicago Board of Education handling labor and
She was recently appointed Commissioner for the Cook County Human Rights
Commission, where she serves as its Vice-Chair. She was appointed a
Commissioner for the American Bar Association Commission on Racial and
Ethnic Diversity in the Profession; serves on the Board of Trustees for
the Hispanic Lawyers Scholarship Fund; Dean's Advisory Council for the
DePaul University College of Law; Board of the Chicago Legal Clinic; and
Executive Board for Illinois Partners for Human Services.
She is the former President of the Hispanic Lawyers Association of
Illinois where she founded its mentoring program, JD Mentors, now in its
11th year. She served in numerous positions for the Hispanic National
Bar Association (HNBA) including General Counsel; National Vice
President of Programs; National Vice President of Regions; and
Commissioner, Commission of the Status of Latinas in the Legal
Profession; and Regional President (Wis., Ill., Mich., Ind.).
She is an in-demand keynote speaker and over the years has served on
numerous boards and task forces, including serving three terms as a
member of the U.S. District Court Northern District of Illinois
Magistrate Judge Selection Committee; Board Director for the Jane Addams
Juvenile Court Foundation; Member of the Diversity Pipeline Subcommittee
of the ISBA Task Force on Diversity; Planning Committee of the Women
Everywhere Service Project; Founding Member of Illinois Legal Aid
Online; Coordinating Committee Member for The Equal Justice
Illinois Campaign; Advisory Board Member for Centro Comunitario Juan
Diego; Board Member for Southeast Chicago Development Commission; Board
Secretary for Our Children in the Courts Foundation; and Member of The
Illinois Task Force on Unaccompanied Immigrant Children.
Her many honors include the CBA Alliance for Women's Alta May Hewlett
Award; Seton Academy Alumni of Distinction Honoree; Chicago Commission
of Human Relations: Advisory Council on Latino Affairs Award; Cook
County State's Attorney Richard A. Devine, El Humanitario Award;
Mayor Daley Leadership 2000 Award; DePaul College of Law,
Latino Law Student Association Distinguished Alumnus Award; and DePaul
College of Law, Outstanding Service as a Young Alumnus Award.
Born in Jalisco, Mexico, she resides in Chicago with her husband Frank,
and three children (Liam 11, Elijah 9 and Abbey Rose 7). She is a
graduate of Loyola University-Chicago and her JD is from DePaul
University College of Law.
|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
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
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
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
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.
|Thomas F. Boleky
Thomas F. Boleky is a partner with Beutel Hurst Boleky LLC, and
concentrates his practice in personal injury, wrongful death and medical
malpractice litigation. He has tried numerous cases to a successful
verdict throughout Illinois and had handled legal matters in both state
and federal court in a variety of jurisdictions throughout the country.
He has served on the Chicago Bar Association's Judicial Evaluation
Committee for the past 12 years, including chairing its Investigation
Division, its Hearing Division and as General Chair in 2012-2013. He
also served as co-chair of the Chicago Bar Association's Appellate
Review Committee in 2011-2012. In May 2014, he was the recipient of the
William J. White Award of Excellence, which was given to him by the
Chicago Bar Association for his leadership and service on the Judicial
Evaluation Committee and his many years sitting on its Executive
He has frequently served as a moderator and judge for the DePaul College
of Law's Moot Court Society and the American Association for Justice's
Student Trial Advocacy Competition. He is a frequent contributor for
many civic, community and legal organizations and has planned,
conducted, taught or served as moderator at over 40 different legal
seminars throughout his career. For the past two years, he has served as
a Mentor in Northern Illinois University - College of Law's 1L Mentor
Program. He also devotes a substantial amount of time to the Les Turner
ALS Foundation, where he is a member of its Board of Directors and Chair
of its Strategic Planning Implementation Committee.
He is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, limited to
attorneys who have won million and multi-million dollar verdicts and
settlements, and has an AV rating - the highest level awarded for
professional excellence - by the Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory. He is
also recognized as a "Top Illinois Lawyer" by SuperLawyers.com.
He earned his B.S. from Spring Hill College and his J.D. from DePaul
Chasity Boyce is Associate General Counsel to Governor Bruce Rauner,
where she oversees the Governor's clemency process and serves as the
Governor's legal liaison to the Department of Corrections, Department of
Juvenile Justice, Prisoner Review Board, Department of Human Rights,
Department of Children and Family Services, State Board of Education and
all related boards and commissions. Prior to joining the Governor's
legal team, she was a senior associate at O'Hagan LLC, specializing in
premises and products liability.
She currently serves on the board of the Black Women Lawyers'
Association of Greater Chicago, Inc. as the ex-officio (immediate past
president) and the Illinois Supreme Court Commission on
Professionalism's Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Board. Her awards
include being named to the Lawyers of Color Inaugural Hot List for the
Midwest Region, which recognizes early- to mid-career attorneys under
the age of 40, and The National Black Lawyers-Top 100, an
invitation-only professional honorary organization.
Over the past few years, she has served as a panelist for the CBA Young
Lawyers' Section, as well as a judge for the CBA Moot Court
She earned her B.A. in Public Policy and a certificate in Markets and
Management from Duke University and her J.D. from the Howard University
School of Law.
|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
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
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.
|James R. FortCamp
James R. FortCamp is a partner in the firm of Seyfarth Shaw LLP where he
concentrates on real estate taxation matters. He has over 23 years of
experience in handling real estate tax assessment issues and appeals for
industrial, commercial, multi-family and residential properties in Cook
County and the surrounding collar counties. He handles matters with
local Assessors, Boards of Review, in the Circuit Court and before the
State of Illinois Property Tax Appeal Board. Additionally, he handles
real estate tax exemption matters before various Boards of Review and
before the Illinois Department of Revenue.
He has been an active member in the Chicago Bar Association for
approximately 27 years and has handled pro bono matters for the CBA for
approximately 23 years. He earned his BS in Finance from the
University of Illinois in 1984 and his JD degree from the University of
Illinois in 1987.
|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
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
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.
|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
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
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 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
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.
Meredith Ritchie is Vice President, General Counsel and Chief Ethics and
Compliance Officer for Alliant Credit Union in Chicago. Alliant, the
largest credit union in Illinois, has more than $8 billion in assets.
She oversees the Legal and Compliance Department, the Ethics Program and
is a member of the Senior Leadership Team.
A Chicago area native, she graduated from Hamilton College in Clinton,
NY and obtained her JD from DePaul College of Law in Chicago. During
college, she studied at La Sorbonne and L'institut d'etudes Politiques
(Sciences Po) in Paris. She has had a diverse legal career in
Chicago starting out in private practice where she litigated tort
actions. A large portion of her litigation included defending a Fortune
100 petroleum company.
She then served as an Assistant State's Attorney for Cook County,
Illinois in both the civil and criminal divisions before taking her
experience to the State of Illinois where she contributed to the
Illinois Department of Public Aid and then served as Deputy General
Counsel to the Department of Central Management Services. She has served
as in-house counsel for Accenture, an international technology
She chaired the Standing Committee on Women and the Law of the Illinois
State Bar Association as well as the Young Lawyers Division. She served
on the Board of the Illinois Bar Foundation and Chicago Volunteer Legal
Services. Currently, she is Vice chair of the Operations Sub-committee
of the American Bar Association Credit Union Committee and is on the
Board of Directors of the Coalition of Women's Initiatives in Law as
well as the Alliant Credit Union Foundation.
|David J. Scriven-Young
David J. Scriven-Young is a senior associate in the Chicago office of
Peckar & Abramson, P.C. and concentrates in the areas of commercial
litigation, construction law, and environmental law. Before joining
Peckar & Abramson, he was an associate at Jenner & Block and at
McDermott Will & Emery.
He has been very active in the Chicago Bar Association, having served as
a Director of the CBA Young Lawyers Section (YLS) and as co-chair of the
YLS Environmental Law Committee. He is the current Chair of the CBA
Environmental Law Committee.
During the 2014-2015 bar year, he will serve as the Assembly Speaker of
the American Bar Association (ABA) Young Lawyers Division (YLD). In that
capacity, he will be the YLD's Chief Legislative Officer, chair the
Resolutions Team and Elections Committee, and preside over the Assembly,
which is the 250-member policy-making body of the YLD. He previously
served the YLD as Assembly Clerk, Chair of the Truth in Law School
Education Task Force, Committee & Liaison Director, liaison to the
ABA Standing Committee on Environmental Law, and Chair of the Law
Practice Management Committee and the Environment, Energy, and Resources
Committee. He was recently appointed by the incoming ABA President to
serve as a member of the ABA Standing Committee on Technology and
Information Services. He has also served as Vice President and Secretary
of the Fenwick High School Bar Association.
In addition to his bar association involvement, he maintains an active
pro bono practice and donates his time to various pro bono causes. He is
a Director of the Alumni Network Leadership Council of the Public
Interest Law Initiative (PILI), previously served as the Council's
Program Planning Team Leader, and was a PILI Fellow.
His awards include the David C. Hilliard Award for Outstanding Committee
Service from the CBA YLS and the Star of the Quarter Award from the ABA
YLD. He was also named as an Illinois Super Lawyer, an Illinois "Rising
Star", and to the "14 Under 40" list of outstanding alumni from DePaul
University. He is listed in Who's Who in America and Who's Who in
He is a frequent lecturer and author on legal topics. He graduated magna
cum laude from Marquette University with a B.A. in history and political
science, and summa cum laude and Order of the Coif from DePaul
University College of Law with a J.D., where he was on Law Review.
|Amy J. St. Eve
Amy J. St. Eve was appointed as a United States District Court Judge for
the Northern District of Illinois in 2002. At 36, St. Eve was one of the
youngest judges ever appointed in the Northern District of Illinois.
Since her appointment, St. Eve has presided over a significant number of
civil and criminal trials, including high profile trials in United
States v. Tony Rezko, United States v. Conrad Black, et al., and United
States v. Mohammed Salah, et al. Judge St. Eve has also sat with the
Seventh Circuit, Ninth Circuit and Federal Circuit Courts of Appeals as
a visiting judge. In 2002, St. Eve received Crain's Chicago Business'
Top Forty Under Forty Award.
Judge St. Eve serves as an Adjunct Professor at Northwestern Law School
where she teaches trial advocacy. St. Eve is the co-author of"More From
the Jury Box: The Latest on Juries and Social Media," 12 Duke L. &
Tech. Rev. 64 (2014); "The Forgotten Pleading," Fed. Cts. L. Rev. 152
(2012); "Ensuring A Fair Trial in the Age of Social Media," 11 Duke L.
& Tech. Rev. 1 (2012); and "The Fault Allocation Provisions of the
Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995" A Roadmap for
Litigants and Courts," 3 NYU. J. L. & Bus. 187 (Fall 2006). She is
also a co-author of Federal Employment Litigation (The Rutter Group
Judge St. Eve serves as a member of the Judicial Conference Committee on
Rules of Practice and Procedure (2013-present), a member of the Seventh
Circuit Pattern Criminal Jury Instructions Committee, and a member of
the Northern District of Illinois Patent Local Rules Committee. Judge
St. Eve previously served as a member of the Judicial Conference
Committee on Court Administration and Case Management (2006-13) and as
the Seventh Circuit Representative to the Federal Judges Association
(2007-13). She is on the Board of Directors of the Chicago branch of the
Federal Bar Association, a member of the American Bar Association, the
Chicago Bar Association, the Illinois State Bar Association, and the
Chicago Women's Bar Association. St. Eve is on the Chicago Bar
Association's Board of Managers. She also is the Chair of the ABA's
White Collar Crime's Subcommittee on Ethics and a Fellow of the American
Judge St. Eve is a member of the Cornell Law School Advisory Council,
the Cornell College of Arts and Sciences' Advisory Council, the
President's Council of Cornell Women, and the Loyola Academy Board of
Trustees. She also serves on the Board of Directors of Chicago Posse and
is a member of the Museum of Science and Industry's Youth Science
Engagement Advisory Committee.
Judge St. Eve graduated from Cornell University in May 1987 with a B.A.
in history. During the summer of 1986, Judge St. Eve attended Oriel
College at Oxford University in England. In 1990, Judge St. Eve
graduated magna cum laude and Order of the Coif from Cornell Law School
where she had been first in her class. She was a member of the Cornell
Law Review and served as an Articles' Editor.
From 1990-1994, St. Eve worked as a litigation associate at Davis Polk
& Wardwell in New York, New York. St. Eve served as an Associate
Independent Counsel for the Whitewater Independent Counsel in Little
Rock, Arkansas from 1994-1996 where she second chaired the successful
prosecution of former Governor Jim Guy Tucker, Jim McDougal and Susan
McDougal for fraud. From August 1996 through April 2001, St. Eve served
as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Northern District of
Illinois. In 2001, St. Eve became Senior Counsel in Litigation at Abbott
|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
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
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
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 &
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.
|John T. Theis
John T. Theis is an attorney in private practice with over 40 years'
experience in criminal defense in Federal and State Court. He has tried
over 200 felony cases, including more than 30 federal jury trials. He
began his legal career in 1974 as a Cook County Assistant State's
Attorney, before founding his own firm in 1979. In addition to his
extensive trial experience, he frequently represents individuals in
Grand Jury investigations and administrative proceedings.
A member of the CBA since 1974, he chaired the Defense of Prisoners
Committee, was appointed to chair a Special CBA Committee on the
Criminal Courts and has served on several other Special Committees. He
also serves on the Board of the Chicago Bar Foundation, and is a former
chair of the Illinois State Bar Association's Criminal Justice Section.
For 10 years he chaired the ISBA's Special Committee on Cable TV. For
over 20 years, he served as a member of the panel attorney selection
committee of the Federal Defender Program.
For many years, he has taught Trial Advocacy as an adjunct professor at
DePaul University Law School, and has lectured at Northwestern and
Loyola University law schools. He has been admitted to practice in
California and in federal districts in Wisconsin, Michigan, Indiana, and
Minnesota, and has been appointed to represent defendants in more than
ten federal death penalty prosecutions.
A 1969 graduate of Loyola University Chicago, he earned his J.D. in 1973
from the University Of San Francisco School Of Law. The native Chicagoan
is married to Illinois Supreme Court Justice Mary Jane Theis.
|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
|Allison L. Wood
Allison L. Wood is Principal of Legal Ethics Consulting, P.C. in
Chicago. She is a former Hearing Board Chair and former Litigation
Counsel with the Illinois Attorney Registration and Disciplinary
Commission (ARDC). Her firm represents lawyers who face disciplinary
investigations or complaints; law students who face Character &
Fitness challenges; and she provides ethics evaluations and opinions for
legal malpractice cases. Prior to her service with the ARDC, she was a
Partner at a boutique law firm where she handled commercial litigation
and employment matters. She also worked as an in-house litigation
counsel with a public utility. She has extensive trial experience in
State and Federal courts, as well as administrative tribunals.
For more then a decade, she has served as an adjunct professor and
lecturer at University of Chicago, DePaul University College of Law, and
The John Marshall Law School. She has taught pre-trial skills, trial
skills and professional responsibility courses.
She is a current member of the American Bar Association's Standing
Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility; a Board Member of
the Center for Conflict Resolution; and the Chair of the Law Practice
Committee of the Cook County Bar Association. She is a former member of
the Illinois Bar Association's Standing Committee on Professional
Conduct and a former member of the American Bar Association's Standing
Committee on Lawyersâ€™ Professional Liability. A
Certified MCLE Ethics Provider, she has presented ethics CLE courses to
several bar associations including the Chicago Bar Association, the
Illinois Bar Association, Hispanic Bar Association, the Decalogue
Society, the Cook County Bar Association, the Black
Womenâ€™s Bar Association, the DuPage County Bar
Association, and the Lake County Bar Association. She also writes a
monthly ethics column, "WoodWiseEthics", for The Chicago Daily Law
She earned her J.D. from DePaul University College of Law.