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Out Of State


The ISBA Assembly voted to establish two at-large Board of Governors to be filled by ISBA Vice Presidential appointment to reflect under-represented segments of the ISBA in its governance. Jessica Arong O’Brien (left), a lawyer in the Chicago office of the Illinois Department of Revenue, and Vincent F. Cornelius, a criminal defense attorney in Wheaton, were selected to fill the seats.
Also establishes 2 at-large Board seats to reflect under-represented segments of the Illinois Bar The 201-member Assembly of the Illinois State Bar Association voted at its Annual Meeting on Saturday morning to approve recommendations by an ISBA task force that supports the ability of lawyers to engage in limited scope recommendations that it believes will benefit lawyers and consumers. Working with the Illinois Judges Association and the Chicago Bar Association, the ISBA prepared a report on behalf of the Joint Task Force on Limited Scope Representation that would, among other things, establish a “Limited Appearance” form and other procedures that specifically identify a lawyer’s participation in a matter in which a litigant represents himself or herself in court. The report, which is the culmination of an 11-month process, will be presented to the Illinois Supreme Court.

ISBA President John G. Locallo is sworn in by his cousin, retired Cook County Judge Dan Locallo.
Chicago property tax attorney John G. Locallo was sworn-in as the 135th ISBA President on Friday night at the Annual Meeting in Lake Geneva, Wis. Locallo is a partner in the firm of Amari & Locallo. Locallo's theme for the evening was family, with his brother and law partner Joe Locallo presenting him and his cousin, retired judge Daniel Locallo, swearing him in. His sister, opera singer Diana Locallo Vera, sang the aria Where'er you walk with John on piano. "I am so glad I was able to keep it in the family tonight with my brother Joe, cousin Dan and law partner Leonard Amari," Locallo said. As a tax lawyer, Locallo enjoys saving clients money and will focus his year on helping ISBA members with technology. “We’re at a critical juncture in the law as more business is flowing to online legal services,” Locallo said. “It is a must that lawyers provide the most cost-efficient services to their clients.” Click here to view pictures from the Annual Dinner and Swearing-in.
President Mark D. Hassakis and incoming President John G. Locallo conferred awards on several distinguished ISBA members on Friday at the 2011 Annual Awards Luncheon. Click here to view pictures from the Luncheon. Those being honored were:
The Illinois State Bar Association's 135th Annual Meeting kicked off Thursday night at the Abbey Resort at Lake Geneva. The evening featured an Opening Reception with food and games for the kids on the lakeside lawn and Workshop on “Who Me? A Law School Professor,” presented by the Southern Illinois University School of Law. Chicago attorney John G. Locallo will be sworn-in as the next ISBA president at Friday night's Annual Dinner. Click here to view pictures from the Opening Reception.

ISBA President Mark D. Hassakis (front row, center) with the 45 new admittees to the U.S. Supreme Court.
U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts granted the motion by ISBA President Mark D. Hassakis on Monday to admit 45 ISBA members to practice before the nation's highest court. The admittees and their families enjoyed a continental breakfast in the East Conference room of the Supreme Court before the admission ceremony and to a history of the court after the ceremony. The group was also treated to special appearances by Supreme Court Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor. The Illinois State Bar Association conducts trips to the U.S. Supreme Court every two years - the next trip will be led by current ISBA 2nd Vice President John Thies of Urbana on June 3, 2013. Click here to view a photo gallery from this event.

ISBA President Mark D. Hassakis with his wife, Janet Hassakis, ISBA President-elect John G. Locallo, Marron Mahoney, IBF President George Mahoney and IBF Past President David Sosin
The U.S. Supreme Court will swear-in 45 Illinois State Bar Association members on Monday, June 6. Supreme Court Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Elana Kagan have agreed to meet with the new admittees and their families after the ceremony. A reception sponsored by GEICO Insurance and the ISBA was held on Sunday night at the historic Willard InterContinental Hotel. Click here to view a photo gallery from the reception.

Mary V. Khouri
The law firm of Greensfelder, Hemker & Gale, P.C. is pleased to announce Mary V. Khouri has joined the Firm’s Employee Benefits Practice Group as an Associate. Khouri focuses her practice in the employee benefits and executive compensation areas.  Khouri has significant experience drafting and amending qualified retirement plans and welfare benefit plans.  Khouri regularly advises and counsels clients on employee benefit plan administration, compliance, contracts, and mergers and acquisition issues. While in law school, Ms.
The Israeli Consulate in New York and the Office of the Legal Advisor at the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs, together with the American Association of Jewish Lawyers and Jurists (AAJLJ), will hold an international Conference on Legal Challenges in Israeli Policy and Advocacy, on June 27-28, in New York. Discussions will focus on:
  • Law and Security: the legal framework in the fight against terrorism; operational dilemmas; methods of investigation
  • International institutions: challenges facing Israel within the United Nations system; the international legal sphere and the US Legal system
  • Law and advocacy: responding to campaigns of delegitimization and "Iawfare"; taking the legal initiative; presenting Israel's case and advancing informed discussion
  • Key issues in Israel-Palestinian negotiations: updates and insights from Israel's negotiations with its neighbors

Donald J. Straka
Walentine O’Toole McQuilan & Gordon is pleased to announce that Donald J. Straka has joined the firm as a partner in the area of corporate and banking law. Straka has over 20 years of experience in representing public and private corporate clients, financial institutions, medical practices, manufacturing concerns and regulatory authorities in multiple jurisdictions. He specializes in corporate law, banking law and regulation, lending and finance, mergers and acquisitions (private and public companies), business transactions and litigation, regulatory matters, securities, real estate and employment matters. He provides strategic legal advice to clients relative to their growth and financial objectives, organizing and structuring business entities, acquisitions and divestitures, and negotiating and closing complex transactions. He served for eight years as the Chief Legal Officer of a Midwest regional Bank Holding Company and its subsidiaries where he advised the Board of Directors and led the Legal, Human Resources and Security Departments and served on a number of Committees. He has also served as a Director and/or CEO of various other corporate entities in the United States, Canada and Mexico.
The Chicago-based law firm of Meckler Bulger Tilson Marick & Pearson LLP (MBT) continues to expand nationally with the opening today of its new office in San Francisco - at 575 Market Street. The office will be led by seven new partners, including a group of recognized national leaders in insurance and labor and employment law from the San Francisco law firms of Sedgwick LLP and Long & Levit LLP. Joining MBT from Sedgwick will be Julia Molander, who specializes in insurance counseling and litigation. She will serve as managing partner of MBT’s San Francisco office. Other new partners include four attorneys from Long & Levit:
  • Howard Garfield , insurance, employment and professional liability
  • Irene Yesowitch, insurance counseling and litigation, and professional liability
  • Jason Geller, labor and employment litigation
  • Karen Uno, insurance counseling and litigation
Also joining the San Francisco office will be Dan Crawford, the Executive Vice-President and General Counsel of the California-based business insurance brokerage firm of Edgewood Partners Insurance Center, which is ranked among the fastest growing privately held companies in California.  In addition to his duties as general counsel, Crawford will become a partner at MBT, specializing in insurance and employment litigation. Rounding out the group of partners leading MBT’s new San Francisco office will be Fulton Smith III of the San Francisco-based Barber Law Group.  Smith specializes in insurance coverage and litigation.