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Illinois Supreme Court

Chief Justice Thomas L. Kilbride
The Illinois State Bar Association and Chicago Bar Association will co-host an all-bar reception to welcome Illinois Supreme Court Chief Justice Thomas L. Kilbride on Wednesday, April 27 at the Standard Club, Grand Ballroom, 320 S. Plymouth. The reception will run from 5-7 p.m. and is complimentary. Justice Kilbride was born in LaSalle. He received a B.A. degree magna cum laude from St. Mary's College in Winona, Minn., in 1978 and his law degree from Antioch School of Law in Washington, D.C., in 1981. Justice Kilbride practiced law for 20 years in Rock Island, engaging in the general practice of law, including appeals, environmental law, labor law, employment matters, and other general civil and criminal matters. He was elected to the Illinois Supreme Court for the Third District in 2000 and became Chief Justice of the Illinois Supreme Court last October. For reservations, send an email to
The Illinois Supreme Court has announced the implementation of a mandatory judicial evaluation program for all Circuit and Associate judges in the state as the final part of a series of initiatives to improve public confidence in Illinois courts. The program is designed “for the purpose of achieving excellence in the performance of individual judges and the improvement of the judiciary as a whole,” states Supreme Court Rule 58 which the Court amended Tuesday to establish the program as mandatory. “This is an extremely important step in making a good judiciary even better,” said Illinois Supreme Court Chief Justice Thomas L. Kilbride. “There are more than 900 judges in Illinois and under this program every one who serves at the Circuit Court level will be evaluated by those who appear before them and work with them. This evaluation is for the purpose of enhancing the performance of Illinois judges and improving public confidence in the state’s courts.” The results will be confidential, shared only between the judge and a facilitator, also a judge or retired judge who has been specifically trained in the process. The program will be administered under a contract with the National Center for State Courts and will be monitored by the Supreme Court Judicial Performance Evaluation Committee.
Our panel of leading appellate attorneys review today's Supreme Court opinions from Civil cases Speed District 802 v. Warning, Ries v. The City of Chicago, Johnston v. Weil, Kaufman v. Schroeder, M.D., LaSalle Bank National Association v. Cypress Creek 1, and Criminal cases People v. Baez and People v. Comage.


Speed District 802 v. Warning

By Alyssa M. Reiter, Williams Montgomery & John Ltd. The reviewing courts have struggled with this case, resulting in a divided Illinois Supreme Court reversing the (divided) appellate court judgment and setting aside a decision of the Illinois Educational Labor Relations Board (“the Board”). At issue was whether the SPEED District 802 (“the District”) violated two sections of the Illinois Educational Labor Relations Act (“the Act”) when it failed to renew the teaching contract of Warning, who was a nontenured probationary teacher.
Our panel of leading appellate attorneys review today's opinions in the civil case Carr v. Gateway, Inc. and criminal cases People v. Skryd, People v. Beauchamp and People v. Manning.
The Illinois Supreme Court unanimously overturned the Appellate Court's decision today that puts Rahm Emanuel back on the ballot for Chicago mayor. Justice Thomas delivered the judgment of the court with Chief Justice Kilbride and Justices Garman, Karmeier and Theis concurring. Justices Freeman and Burke specially concurred, with opinion. Click here to read the opinion.
The Illinois Supreme Court has issued an emergency motion that orders Rahm Emanuel's name back on the ballot for Chicago mayor while it considers his appeal. Click here to read the order. Lawyers for Chicago mayoral candidate Rahm Emauel filed a PLA today with the Illinois Supreme Court. Click here to read the PLA. The Illinois Supreme Court website has a page with all the relevant documents to the Emanuel residency case.
The Illinois Supreme Court has announced the filing of disciplinary orders involving a number of licensed lawyers. Sanctions were imposed because the lawyers engaged in professional misconduct by violating state ethics law. More information on each case is available at the ARDC website.


  • Dave Ellis Compton, Chicago
Mr. Compton, who was licensed in 1991, was disbarred on consent. He pled guilty to bringing cannabis into a Cook County Criminal Court House detention area. He was suspended on an interim basis on July 9, 2010.
  • Forrest David Laidley, Libertyville
Mr. Laidley, who was admitted in 1978, was disbarred on consent. He pled guilty in federal court to attempted mail fraud and bank fraud and was sentenced to serve 60 months in prison. He was suspended on an interim basis and until further order of the Court on December 28, 2010.
  • Eric Tyrone Tolen, St. Louis, Mo.
Mr. Tolen, who was licensed in 1986, was disbarred on consent. He was convicted in Missouri on multiple counts of statutory sodomy and one count of victim tampering. He was sentenced to a 65-year term of imprisonment. Mr. Tolen was suspended on an interim basis on February 3, 2009.
  • Bradford Francis Wisniewski, Chicago
Mr. Wisniewski, who was licensed in 1977, was disbarred. He misappropriated approximately $35,000 in client funds, neglected multiple client matters, failed to communicate with clients, did not return unearned fees and failed to cooperate with the ARDC. He did not appear at his disciplinary hearing.
The Illinois Supreme Court has appointed Shelbyville Judge Michael P. Kiley as Chairperson of the Special Supreme Court Committee to Study Courtroom and Judicial Security.
Justice Rita B. Garman of the Supreme Court of Illinois has begun an application process for a Circuit Court vacancy in the Sixth Judicial Circuit. The at-large vacancy is created by the retirement of Circuit Judge Theodore E. Paine effective November 3, 2010. Under the Illinois Constitution, judicial vacancies are filled by Supreme Court appointment. The application process will lead to final Court approval. The applicants will undergo an evaluation and screening process.
Our panel of leading appellate attorneys review today's Supreme Court opinions in JP Morgan Chase Bank v. Earth Foods, Ready v. United/Goedecke Services, Wright Development Group v. Walsh, In re Estate of Wilson, People v. Close, People v. Johnson and People v. Thompson.