Two Great ISBA Member Benefits Sponsored by
A Value of $1,344, Included with Membership

Out Of State


On March 31st, ISBA co-sponsored the First Chair Society at SLU Law’s Inaugural Annual Fundraiser at iTap Soulard, the goal of which was the formation of a scholarship fund for first-generation law students at SLU Law. The First Chair Society is a student organization dedicated to creating mentoring, support, and networking opportunities for first-generation law students. About 30 students, friends, family and alumni were in attendance for a fun-filled craft beer and dessert pairing, with available appetizers and a 50/50 raffle. Thanks to our wonderful sponsors, including ISBA, the First Chair Society will be able to give out a substantial scholarship to a SLU Law student next year!

Theodore 'Ted' Spak Theodore ("Ted") Spak, 83, passed away January 20, 2016. An attorney, CPA, businessman, and beloved husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather, Ted was a diamond life master and certified bridge teacher, as well as a devoted philanthropist.

Ted was born in Chicago, and attended Northwestern University, graduating with an accounting degree in 1953 and from the law school in 1956. After practicing law from 1956-62, he established Theodore Spak & Associates, a public insurance adjusting firm, where he served as President until his retirement. He relocated to Miami, Florida in 1976.

John Dickason
John Dickason
Former ISBA Executive Director John H. Dickason, 84, of Coral Gables, FL passed away February 2, 2016. He was born June 3, 1931 in Wooster, OH, a twin son of the late Donald E. and Martha (Hamilton) Dickason. He graduated from Champaign, IL High School and earned a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Business Administration from Dartmouth College. John and his wife Barbara (Bobbie) were married June 20, 1953 in Christ Episcopal Church, Bronxville, NY. He served in the U.S. Army (1954-1956).

He was Director of Administrative Services for the Illinois State Bar Association from 1960-1970 and then served as Executive Director until 1985. In 1985 he became the Vice President for Finance and Administration of the Lucille P. Markey Charitable Trust which assisted basic medical researchers.  

George Ripplinger, managing partner of the law firm Ripplinger & Zimmer, LLC, of Belleville, Illinois, and St. Louis, Missouri, has been appointed to the Illinois Access to Civil Justice Council.

The Illinois Access to Civil Justice Council was created by the Illinois legislature by Public Act 099-0281 to enable and fund the development and support of a legal hotline and network of legal assistance to help active duty, Reserve, National Guard, retired service members, veterans and military families in need throughout the state. It is a five year pilot program funded by a temporary $2.00 add-on to civil filing fees that began collection on September 1, 2015 and will sunset at the conclusion of the pilot project on 2020.

Steven V. Hunter
Steven V. Hunter
The national law firm of Quarles & Brady LLP today announced the recipients of its first Quarles & Brady Michael Gonring Pro Bono Award (The Gonring Award). The 2015 inaugural class includes a team of attorneys led by Emily Feinstein and Leah McNeely, Steven Hunter, Danny Lewin, and Melissa McCord. The firm is donating $1,000 to nonprofits designated by each individual honoree. The announcement was made during National Pro Bono Week. The award is named in honor of firm partner Michael Gonring.

A memorial session honoring the memory of the late Honorable Richard D.Cudahy, Senior Circuit Judge for the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, will be held on Monday, November 30, in the Ceremonial Courtroom on the 25th Floor of the Dirksen Federal Courthouse at 219 South Dearborn Street in Chicago.

Judge Cudahy was appointed to the court in 1979 by President Jimmy Carter and continued to serve until his death on September 22, 2015. He is survived by his widow Janet, seven adult children, and thirteen grandchildren. Served by 83 law clerks and two secretaries during his 36 years on the bench, he set a high standard for all to follow and is greatly missed.

Hon. Patrick McLaughlin
Hon. Patrick McLaughlin
Hon. Patrick McLaughlin, 68, passed peacefully August 28, 2015, surrounded by family after a 3 and 1/2 year battle with pancreatic cancer.

Mr. McLaughlin was born in Keokuk, Iowa. He attended Western Illinois University and graduated with a B.A. in political science. He attended law school at St. Louis University and received his J.D., cum laude, in 1974.

Drafted from law school, Pat proudly served in the U.S. Army before returning to finish his Juris Doctorate.

Pat began his law practice in St. Louis, Missouri, where he worked as an associate for several years. He moved his family to Olney and practiced law, specializing in Civil and Criminal Trial Practice. He was Board Certified in 1986 by the National Board of Trial Advocacy.

Pat was elected Circuit Judge of Second Judicial Circuit, Illinois, in 1986 and served in that capacity until 1997. During his tenure in Illinois, he sat, at times, as a special judge of the Illinois Court of Appeals.

In 1997 Pat was appointed as a U.S. Administrative Law Judge with the Social Security Administration and assigned to Jacksonville, Florida, where he remained. 

Pat was an active member of Saint Paul’s Catholic Church, Knights of Columbus and American Legion. Pat was the founder of the Florida Pancreas Cancer Coalition, a 501 c (3) organization. After being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in January of 2012, he was passionate to raise funds to support research for the disease.


In a continued effort to expand our legal network and better serve the ISBA, President Umberto S. Davi was sworn-in by Chief Justice Patience Drake Roggensack of the Wisconsin Supreme Court and admitted to the Wisconsin Bar on a Motion made by State Bar of Wisconsin President Ralph Cagle. The ceremony took place on Friday, August 28, 2015, in the Wisconsin Supreme Court, which is located in the Capitol Building, in Madison, Wisconsin. Pictured are (from left) Jan Davi, President Davi, Justice Roggensack, Wisconsin Bar Past President Michelle Behnke, President Cagle and Marie Sarantakis.

Amy Leonas, 39, beloved daughter of Ted and Marla Leonas. Loving sister of Melinda Leonas, Lynsey (Casey) Johnston, Carley Leonas, Elizabeth Leonas and Teddy Leonas. Cherished aunt of Eva Johnston. Best friend of cousin Jennifer (Connor) Ford. Amy was preceded in death by her biological mother, Carole Brady. She was fond of her many aunts, uncles, cousins and close friends.

Amy was an attorney. She was a graduate of Valparaiso University and received her law degree from Washington University in St. Louis. Amy began her law career as a Cook County Assistant States Attorney where she spent a great deal of time prosecuting cases in the domestic violence division. Eventually Amy branched into entertainment law, where she served as legal advisor to the Daytime Emmy Award winning "Judge Pirro" show, followed by her last positions where she served as legal advisor for ITV's nationally syndicated "Jeremy Kyle" and "Bill Cunningham" television shows in New York City.

Amy enjoyed a number of close friends, many of which were law school classmates and former colleagues, who played an instrumental role in helping both Amy and her family cope with Amy's terminal diagnosis, and her 20-month courageous battle with Glioblastoma Multiforme.

Services are being held privately. The family is asking that in lieu of flowers, donations be made in the name of Amy Leonasto the American Brain Tumor Association (ABTA.org), 8550 W. Bryn Mawr Ave. Ste 550, Chicago, IL 60631, and/or the Musella Foundation for Brain Tumor Research (Virtualtrials.com) 1100 Peninsula Blvd, Hewlett, NY 11557. Arrangements by Gerardi Funeral Home, Frankfort, IL, 815 469-2144. Sign our guestbook at: gerardifuneralhome online.com

Stanley J. Dale, MA, JD, a mediator in West Hollywood, California has been named Visiting Assistant Professor and Acting Director of the Banta Center for Business, Ethics and Society at the University of Redlands in Redlands, California.