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Southern Illinois

Michael J. Tardy, Director of the Administrative Office of the Illinois Courts, announced Tuesday that the Third Judicial Circuit judges voted to select Jennifer L. Hightower and Sarah D. Smith as associate judges of the Third Judicial Circuit.

Ms. Hightower received her undergraduate degree in 2005 from the University of Missouri-Columbia in Columbia, MO and her Juris Doctor in 2009 from Thomas Cooley Law School in Lansing, MI. Ms. Hightower is currently affiliated with Simmons Hanly Conroy, LLC in Alton; Lewis & Clark Community College in Godfrey and the Madison County State's Attorney's Office in Edwardsville.

Ms. Smith received her undergraduate degree in 1998 from Millikin University in Decatur, her Master's Degree from Regent University in Virginia Beach, VA and her Juris Doctor in 2002 from Regent University in Virginia Beach, VA. Ms. Smith is currently affiliated with the Madison County State's Attorney's Office in Edwardsville.

Get the best practice tips and practical tools you need to run your law office efficiently and profitably with this full-day seminar in Fairview Heights on September 11, 2015! Gain a better understanding of: how to maintain your practice during an emergency; how to manage the financial side of your practice – from trust accounts and office expenses, to accounts receivable and payable; the human resources issues you need to be aware of; how document assembly can help you run your practice more efficiently; how to plan for the future given the current legal landscape; and much more!

The program – which is presented by the Illinois State Bar Association and sponsored by the ISBA Mutual Insurance Company – qualifies for 6.75 hours MCLE credit, including 6.75 hours Professional Responsibility MCLE credit (subject to approval).

Click here for more information and to register.

Join us for the next ISBA Solo & Small Firm Practice Institute Series, A Closer Look: Managing Your Practice Like a Pro - Fall 2015 on Friday, Sept. 11 in Fairview Heights.

Find out more and register at

Get the best practice tips and practical tools you need to run your law office efficiently and profitably with this full-day seminar! Gain a better understanding of:

  • How to maintain your practice during an emergency;
  • How to manage the financial side of your practice – from trust accounts and office expenses, to accounts receivable and payable;
  • The human resources issues you need to be aware of;
  • How document assembly can help you run your practice more efficiently;
  • How to plan for the future given the current legal landscape; and
  • Much more!

Charles "Bill" King
Charles "Bill" King
Charles W. "Bill" King, longtime Edwardsville attorney, died August 5, 2015 at 12:18 am.

Mr. King was born September 27, 1934 in Mt. Carmel, Wabash County, IL to Dorothy (Steckler) King and Charles Grover King, spending the first years of his life on his maternal grandparents' farm, then moving with his parents during the World War II years to Nashville, TN.

He graduated from Father Ryan High School in Nashville and was then admitted to the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, IN. He spoke of his days in Nashville, holding many jobs including working as a laborer-assistant "dynamite man," blasting rock for sewer construction, and selling souvenirs at the Grand Ole Opry, then held in the Ryman Auditorium, seeing all the great performers of that era and once performing as Tom Sawyer in a playhouse production with the late Mrs. Sarah Cannon, widely known as "Minnie Pearl," who Mr. King remembered as "a lovely person".

At Notre Dame, Mr. King was the Wing Commander of the 300 Unit Air Force ROTC and received an award from the American Legion. He worked his way through Notre Dame, primarily as a promotional writer and member of the production crew at the CBS-TV affiliate in South Bend, WSBT-TV.

Swanson, Martin & Bell, LLP announces the arrival of three lateral associates, including one to its Madison County, Ill. office.

Associate Kenneth C. Hoffmann joins Swanson, Martin & Bell, LLP from Bollinger Connolly Krause LLC, where he was also an associate. He focuses his practice on Medical Negligence and Healthcare, Construction Litigation, and Product Liability. Mr. Hoffmann received his J.D from DePaul University College of Law in 2011 and his B.A. from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2008.

Associate Alejandra M. Rodriguez joins the firm from Huston, May & Fayez, LLC in Chicago, where she was also an associate. She concentrates her practice on Medical Negligence and Healthcare, Family Law and General Trial Practice. Ms. Rodriguez received her J.D. magna cum laude from Nova Southeastern University’s Shepard Law Center in 2012 and her B.S. with honors from Nova Southeastern University in 2009.

Associate Abbey A. Fritz, who practices in Swanson, Martin & Bell, LLP’s Madison County office, was previously an associate at Brown & James, P.C. in Belleville, Ill. She focuses her practice on Asbestos Litigation and Toxic Tort Litigation. Ms. Fritz received her J.D. from Southern Illinois University School of Law in 2014 and her B.A. summa cum laude from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville in 2011.

Elizabeth Jeane Dibble (Elsey), age 56, of Freeburg, IL passed away on March 2, 2015 at her home, surrounded by family and friends after successfully surviving colon cancer for several years. Jeane was married to John Taylor Dibble on June 7, 1980 in Kewanee, IL. He survives as do their children, James Taylor (Anna Beasley) Dibble of St. Louis, MO and Katherine Elizabeth
Dibble of Austin, TX.

Jeane was born on May 26, 1958 in Hammond, Indiana to Janet D. Lane Elsey and Harold Elsey and older brother James. Shortly thereafter, the family moved to Kewanee, IL and was joined by second brother, Kenneth.

After graduating from Kewanee High School in 1976, Jeane enrolled at MacMurray College, Jacksonville, Illinois, earning a special education degree in three years. After a brief time teaching she enrolled at Southern Ilinois University School of Law, Carbondale, IL, graduating in 1983. Jeane welcomed her son, James, in 1983 and daughter, Katherine, in 1985. She was a devoted mother and confidant, spending much of her free time at her children's sporting events, relaxing at the family cabin and traveling with her family.

Megha Shah
Megha Shah
Greensfelder is proud to announce that Megha Shah has joined the firm's Litigation Practice.

Megha brings state and federal court experience in complex civil litigation to her practice. She has participated in depositions for clients ranging from small businesses to Fortune 500 companies in toxic tort cases and represented clients at the trial and appellate levels.

Before joining the firm, Megha was an associate at a Belleville, Illinois, law firm where she worked on complex toxic tort litigation and product liability. Among her successes was helping to obtain a favorable jury verdict in an asbestos lawsuit in Syracuse, New York.

While in law school, Megha worked with the University of North Carolina’s immigration clinic and as a clerk for a Chicago law firm and the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office. She was a member of the Holderness Moot Court International Team and an executive board member for the International and Comparative Law Organization at UNC, participating in international conferences including at the International Criminal Court at The Hague, Netherlands.

Megha is multilingual, with fluency in Gujarati and moderate proficiency in Hindi and French.

Roger Seibert
Roger Seibert
Roger H. Seibert, 69, of Pinckneyville, passed away at 10:45 A.M., Monday, April 27, 2015 at his residence.

Roger had been a practicing attorney for many years and was partner with Seibert, Bigham and Tanner. He had been attorney for the City of Pinckneyville since May of 2007 and was attorney for Pinckneyville Hospital, Pinckneyville Grade School and Oakdale State Bank. He was a member of the Zion Lutheran Church in Pinckneyville and was a church elder. Roger was a U.S. Army veteran of Vietnam. He was a member of Pinckneyville Optimist Club and Red Hawk Country Club. He was editor of Valparaiso Law Review, member of the Illinois State Bar Association, Perry County Bar Association, Southern Illinois American Inn Of Court and American Bar Association.

He was born January 4, 1946 at Omaha, NE, the son of Harold and Katherine (Hansen) Seibert.

He married Sylvia “Sunny” Carlson in March 7, 1970 at Kansas City, MO and she preceded him in death on July 14, 2010. He then married Marsha Morris on May 10, 2014 at Pinckneyville and she survives.

He is survived by his wife, of Pinckneyville, children - Kim Edwards and husband John of Atlanta, GA, Becky Graciano and husband Ryan of Oakland, CA, Natalie Bishop and husband Charlie and Wayne Halstead and wife Lindsay, all of Du Quoin, grandchildren - Jack Edwards of Atlanta, GA, Everett Graciano of Oakland, CA, Maddie Halstead, Jackson Halstead, Lucy Halstead, Carli Bishop and Charlie Bishop, all of Du Quoin, three sisters - Carole Collyard of Kansas City, KS, Faye Boe of Ypsilanti, MI, and Pat Wrona of Omaha, NE.

Belleville attorney Rex Carr with his Rex car.
Belleville attorney Rex Carr with his Rex car.
Celebrated Belleville attorney Rex Carr passed away on April 27, 2015, at the age of 88 from cancer. 

Rex was born Dec. 29, 1926 in Carbondale, Ill., to parents, Lloyd Carr and Madge Carr, nee Morgan. He passed peacefully at his residence in Belleville, Ill., with family by his side.

Rex was preceded in death by his parents, Lloyd Carr and Madge Carr, nee Morgan; his four brothers, Lloyd Carr Jr, Eugene Carr; Gerald Carr, and Glenn Carr; and his sister, Loylou Winters; his infant daughter, Peggy Jeanne Carr; and his former wives, Jeanne Carr, nee Bates, and Edna Carr, nee Hawkins.

Surviving are his two sisters, Georgia Beaver and Marcheta Murphy; also surviving are his girlfriend and companion of 26 years, Patricia Schmidt; four sons, Dr. Rex G. (Beth) Carr, Bruce (Kathy) Carr, Eric Reeve, and Glenn (Angela) Carr; his daughter, Kathryn (Wayne) Wheeler; 14 granddaughters, Michelle Carr, Stephanie Doyle, Rebekah Brown, Rachel Cardona, Jessica Lamire, Erica Reeve, Chelsey Richards, Michelle Brockman, Shauna Chilton, Elizabeth Wheeler, Deborah Wheeler, Adrienne Carr, Alexei Carr and Alison Carr; grandsons, Rex Carr, Nathan Carr and Brandon Meyer. He also had twenty great-grandchildren.

James Powless
James Powless
James Kenneth Powless, 66, passed away at 7:30 a.m. Saturday, April 18, 2015, in Memorial Hospital of Carbondale.

He was born on April 9, 1949, in Carbondale, the son of Kenneth Barnett Powless and Emily Mary (Cygnar) Powless.

He was united in marriage to Susan Elizabeth Reed on Saturday, June 13, 1970, in Marion, and together they shared over 44 years of marriage.

Jim obtained a Bachelor of Science in finance in 1971 and a Juris Doctor in 1974, from the University of Illinois in Champaign. He practiced law in Marion and owned William County Title and Abstract.

He was a member of Aldersgate United Methodist Church of Marion.

Jim enjoyed fishing, reading, cooking, tinkering, teaching and listening to folk music. He was selfless, performing acts of service for people without hesitation. He enjoyed volunteering for the Marion Regional Humane Society and substitute teaching for Marion and Carterville school districts. He was a “Dad” to many of his daughters’ friends and invested many years coaching summer softball league. His patience, laugh, humor, and love will be celebrated and remembered.