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Nearly two dozen volunteer attorneys helped answer hundreds of questions that in came in by phone, e-mail, and Skype at the 36th Annual Ask A Lawyer Day last Saturday, April 29, in Springfield and Chicago. Attorneys were qualified to answer questions on over 30 areas of law, and the majority of the questions fielded were about domestic/family, personal injury, and criminal law. The calls helped members of the public resolve their legal issues with additional information or gave them the next steps toward resolving those issues, such as a lawyer referral. The endeavor also garnered positive media coverage throughout Illinois.

On hand to answer calls in the Chicago office were ISBA President-Elect Hon. Russell Hartigan, Zachary Hunsinger, Vanessa Hammer, John Zrnich, Nathan Neff, Shannon Heilman, Scott Fintzen, John Donlevy, Alice Dolan, James Coogan, Samuel Cannizzaro, Kristi Verti, and Huan Cassioppi Tran. At the Springfield office, Thomas CarlisleHon. Michael Robinson, Brendan Harris, Rex Gradeless, Jason Adams, Don LoBue, and John Taylor answered calls. 

The ISBA would like to extend a sincere thank you to the volunteers who worked out of both offices. 

Dennis Orsey
Dennis Orsey
Dennis J. Orsey won the race for third vice-president of the Illinois Bar Association, and Julie A. Johnson and Shawn Kasserman won Cook County seats on the Board of Governors. Alisha Biesinger won the race for the Under Age 37 Outside Cook County seat on the Board, and Anna P. Krolikowska and Sarah M. LeRose won the seats for Under Age 37 Cook County.

President-elect Russell Hartigan and Director of Legislative Affairs Jim Covington represented the ISBA at ABA Day in Washington, D.C. on April 25-27. ABA Day is a three-day conference that brings together leaders of the ABA and state and local bars from across the country to meet with members of Congress and advocate on behalf of lawyers. Of special interest this year was funding for legal services.

Jim Covington; Emily Roschek of the ABA; Dawn Willis, Co-Chair of the Chicago Bar Foundation Advocacy Committee; Congressman Bill Foster, who represents Illinois’ 11th District; Russell Hartigan; and Jessica Bednarz of the Chicago Bar Foundation
Jim Covington; Emily Roschek of the ABA; Dawn Willis, Co-Chair of the Chicago Bar Foundation Advocacy Committee; Congressman Bill Foster, who represents Illinois’ 11th District; Russell Hartigan; and Jessica Bednarz of the Chicago Bar Foundation


Registration is now open for the 141st ISBA Annual Meeting. Join us June 15-17 at the Abbey Resort in Fontana, Wisconsin, to celebrate our accomplishments over the past bar year and prepare for the year ahead of us. The Annual Meeting is a great place build lasting relationships, create positive changes in the profession, earn CLE hours, and be a part of our community. Advanced registration must be received by Friday, June 9

Register here

Hotel and registration information

Annual Meeting schedule of events

Annual Meeting CLE

 

Allerton Conference 2017
Allerton Conference 2017
ISBA's Allerton Conference 2017, sponsored by the Civil Practice and Procedure Committee, took place last week, on April 19-21, 2017, at Starved Rock Lodge in Oglesby, Illinois. The conference provided an opportunity for invited lawyers, judges, and law professors from around the state to discuss important issues affecting civil procedure and litigation. The ultimate goal of the event is for attendees to offer suggestions for new Supreme Court rules and legislation sponsored by the ISBA, and propose programs to the ISBA Board of Governors.

The focus of this year's conference was the changing landscape of civil practice, with an emphasis in the areas of technology, ethics, and economics. The event kicked off on Wednesday evening with a welcome reception, followed by introductory comments from Jessica Hegarty, Allerton 2017 chair; Vincent Cornelius, ISBA President; and the Hon. Michael McCuskey of the 10th Circuit. Lloyd Karmeier, chief justice of the Illinois Supreme Court, delivered the opening remarks.

Thursday's programming featured Keynote Speaker Daniel Katz, professor at the Illinois Institute of Technology Chicago-Kent College of Law. He addressed how technology is changing the practice of law and the challenges lawyers are facing as a result. The rest of the day's events included fireside chats and afternoon sessions on reducing costs while increasing efficiency, alternative business structures, and alternative dispute resolution. The day concluded with a brainstorming dinner in which guests split into groups for discussion.


Voting in the ISBA election ends at 4:30 PM CT Friday, April 28. Ballots were distributed to all eligible voters* on March 29, 2017. ISBA's election provider Election-America emailed e-ballots to members with valid email addresses and mailed paper ballots to members without valid email addresses on Wednesday, March 29, 2017. The last day to request a paper ballot was April 14, 2017.

Due to potential spam filters, we are offering an alternative method to vote using ISBA’s website. To vote online, go to https://www.isba.org/elections. If you are not logged in, click “Login to Vote” and sign in using your ISBA member login information. If you are logged in, click the “Vote” button.

All eligible voters* may vote for Third Vice President. Those with ISBA addresses in the following areas may vote in their respective race(s):

1st Judicial District Cook County: Board of Governors (elect 2)

1st Judicial District Cook County: Under Age 37 Board of Governors (elect 2)

1st Judicial District Cook County: Assembly (elect 21)

Outside Cook County (Judicial Circuits 1-23): Under Age 37 Board of Governors (elect 1)

Candidate bios can be viewed in the March Illinois Bar Journal.

Voting ends at 4:30 PM CT Friday, April 28. The canvass of election will be available May 5, 2017.

After nearly a year of renovations, updates to the Illinois Bar Center — the Springfield headquarters of the Illinois State Bar Association, located east of the state Capitol complex — were completed last month.

The original color scheme, materials, and layout also remain in tact to preserve the building’s roots.
The original color scheme, materials, and layout also remain in tact to preserve the building’s roots.
For many years, the ISBA invested in the Chicago Regional Office, which is frequently used as a meeting space by members. But, as the Springfield office heads into its 50th year of existence, a major renovation was in order. According to Dennis Archer, ISBA’s assistant executive director for administration and finance, “It was time for us to bring [headquarters] up to the level that the CRO is.” After all, as Archer pointed out, “When our members come to Springfield now, we are expecting them to stop by so I think that is what we really got out of it. It kind of opens up another meeting place for our members.”

In preparing for the remodel, ISBA had several goals in mind: to make the space more appealing to members and increase the building’s accessibility, all while preserving the building’s historical architectural roots and maintaining the organization’s professional atmosphere.


The ISBA is excited to announce that IllinoisLawyerFinder, our new online member directory, is now available to the public. Directory profiles for members who participate in the Lawyer Referral Service were made live on April 18, and profiles for general members will go live on May 15. ISBA members will be included at no cost, and members' names and business information will be viewable by the public unless they choose to keep it private. Directory profiles will not be created for members who are judges or government attorneys, but they can “opt in” if they so choose.

In order to find an ISBA member to serve their legal needs, the public will be able to go to illinoislawyerfinder.com and search the directory. The new directory is part of a national, online public lawyer directory, which was developed by CloudLaw, Inc. In addition to ISBA members, the parent directory includes members of the State Bar of Michigan, Ohio State Bar Association, and, soon, the Indiana State Bar Association. CloudLaw is actively partnering with additional bar associations to bring their members into the directory and create the preeminent, bar-approved online lawyer directory. The ISBA believes the new directory will provide members with the tools necessary to enhance their unique online presence and foster both client and peer connections.

For more information on the new IllinoisLawyerFinder directory, including proactive steps you can take before your profile is viewable by the public, please visit here

The 2017 Class of Laureates Induction took place on Thursday, March 30, 2017, at a luncheon held at the Standard Club in Chicago.

This year, the Academy of Illinois Lawyers, founded in 1999 to enhance the honor and dignity of the Bar of Illinois, recognized nine lawyers as Laureate Award recipients. Selected by the Board of Regents, these nine individuals — ISBA members who have practiced law primarily in Illinois for at least 25 years — have distinguished themselves by exemplifying the highest ideals of the profession. They are beacons to others who seek to uphold the highest standards in the practice of law.

2017 Laureates with Vincent Cornelius
2017 Laureates with Vincent Cornelius
Thursday’s luncheon began with a welcome reception, giving Laureate Award recipients and their family, friends, and colleagues an opportunity to socialize and network with other attendees. The reception was followed by lunch and the award ceremony.

During the ceremony, award recipients took the stage. One by one, the nine recipients were introduced to the audience. Each Laureate stood during his or her introduction, as career highlights and notable professional accomplishments were presented. ISBA President Vincent Cornelius then awarded each recipient with a medal to honor their record of service to the law and public.

This year’s recipients are among the 111 lawyers who have been selected for the award since its inception in 1999.

Congratulations to the 2017 Class of Laureates!

ISBA election ballots were distributed Wednesday, March 29, 2017 to eligible voters (i.e., ISBA lawyer members whose dues were paid by March 1, 2017).

Eligible voters should have received an email from Election-America at help@election-america.com, assuming those voters added Election-America as a safe sender in their email settings.

Due to potential spam filters, we are offering an alternative method to vote using ISBA’s website.

To vote online,

Go to: https://www.isba.org/elections

If you are not logged in, click “Login to Vote” and sign in using your ISBA member login information. 

If you are logged in, click the “Vote” button.

If you prefer to vote by paper ballot, please email our vendor Election-America at Help+isba@election-america.com or call (866) 384-9978 Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m.- 5:00 p.m. CT. The last day to request a paper ballot is April 14, 2017.

All voters may vote for 3rd Vice President, and those with ISBA addresses in the following areas may vote in their respective race(s):

1st Judicial District Cook County Board of Governors (elect 2)

1st Judicial District Cook County Under Age 37 Board of Governors (elect 2)

1st Judicial District Cook County Assembly (elect 21)

Outside Cook County (Judicial Circuits 1-23) Under Age 37 Board of Governors (elect 1)