Women in Law 2022

Chicago Lawyer is proud to present the 2022 Salute! Women in Law special section.


Congratulations to our Partner, F ǒǁǎǃDžǓ H. K ǒǁǓǎǏǗ

Recognized among Chicago’s 2022 Top Women in the Law by Chicago Daily Law Bulletin and Chicago Lawyer

We congratulate Fran and all of the 2022 Salute! honorees for their dedication, mentorship, and vision that further the advancement of women in law and in our communities.



Sandra shines as a multi-faceted patent and technology attorney whose leadership inside and outside of the firm, vibrant practice, and commitment to diversity through her service to Arab American legal organizations earned her this well-deserved recognition.



Ann Ford Recognized among Chicago's Top Women in Law

"Ann is a shining example of a leader, mentor, and woman of excellence in the practice of law. Throughout her 30-year legal career as a trial attorney, general counsel, and corporate compliance expert, she has led teams, hospital departments, and corporate divisions, sharing her knowledge and expertise to guide others along their professional paths." — Marilee Clausing, Managing Partner, +DOO3UDQJOH 6FKRRQYHOG “Ann is the kind of attorney that any law firm would love. She has vast experience, proven legal knowledge and the skill of connecting with people in every area of the legal profession. She leads our consulting arm, HPS Advise, practices law, mentors younger attorneys and works to build a strong legacy for the firm.” — David C. Hall, Partner, +DOO 3UDQJOH6FKRRQYHOG




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Congratulations to our 3rd Annual Women in Law Honorees


Inside this special edition of Chicago Lawyer are profiles of exceptional women leaders in the law who have been named as the Law Bulletin Media’s third annual Salute! Women in Law Award honorees. Each of them have this in common: they are making incredible impact on our profession, have achieved success while mentoring and promoting oth- er women and have been shining examples of leadership. Earlier this year we put the call out for nominations of women lawyers who are leading the way. We received more than 300 nominations and select- ing the honorees was not an easy job. There are so many incredible women in the Chicago legal profession. Even though our plan to a host a reception and awards ceremony was once changed by the pandemic, hopefully in 2023, we’ll all be able to raise a glass together and celebrate in person. Congratulations to this year’s honorees! Thanks for all you are doing and your efforts to advance other women in our profession.

Peter Mierzwa President & Publisher pmierzwa@lawbulletinmedia.com Adam Hrejsa Director, Women in Law – Salute! ahrejsa@lawbulletinmedia.com Julie Leuck Senior Visual Communication Designer jleuck@lawbulletinmedia.com Adam Pantone Classified Advertising Representative apantone@lawbulletinmedia.com

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Her future is our future.

Cooley congratulates Chicago office co-founder Laurie Bauer and all the influential women lawyers selected for Chicago Daily Law Bulletin’s Women in Law Awards 2022.

© 2022 Cooley LLP, 3175 Hanover Street, Palo Alto, CA 94304 www.cooley.com

Congratulations to Jill and to all of the 2022 Salute Honorees.

We SaluteWomen in Law





GEMMA ALLEN FOUNDER AND PARTNER Allen & Glassman, Chartered A co-founder of Ladden & Allen, Chartered (now Allen, Glassman & Schatz, LLC) Gemma Allen has represented thousands of men and women on matters spanning the entire range of family law issues. Today, Gemma with her law partners, Todd Glassman and Jonathan Schatz, and their team provide the same level of attention to every case, whether it is a simple uncontested divorce or a high-stakes complex case. She is a court-certified mediator in the Domestic Relations Division of the Circuit Court of Cook County and has previously served many families as a Guardian ad Litem/Child’s Representative. She is currently and has been repeatedly selected by her peers as a member of the Leading Lawyers Network, SuperLawyers, Martindale- Hubbell AV Preeminent Lawyer, Lawyers of Distinction, and Best Lawyers. She was also named as a 2017 Enterprising Women of the Year, has been named one of the Dynamic Women of Chicago, and a Woman of Influence, among other recognitions. Gemma is a past president of The Lilac Tree, a resource for women at all stages of a divorce, and also a past president of the Forensic Forum, a membership organization which provided a platform for forensic experts in the family law field to share information, propose legislation, and work to improve the practice of family law. As a long active member in the Illinois State Bar Association, Gemma has served as an appointed member of its Family Law Section Council, was co-chair of the Model Mediation Act sub- committee, was appointed a member of the Governor’s Task Force on child support, and the Task Force on Attorneys for Children. She is also a member of the Lake County Bar Association, Chicago Bar Association, and American Bar Association, as well as the Florida Bar. Allen & Glassman is known for its history of hosting cutting-edge family law Better Beginnings, Fewer Endings Think Tanks ™, bring together judges, mental health practitioners, clergy, attorneys, and other interdisciplinary professionals who are interested in recognizing and addressing serious family law related matters. Gemma is a co-author with retired Cook County Judge (now mediator) Michele Lowrance and financial writer and money advisor Terry Savage titled The New Love Deal: Everything You Must Know Before Marrying, Moving In, or Moving On! so that readers could learn to protect their financial futures. She is an ongoing presence in the media through radio, and has been featured on WGN, articles, blogs, and seminars regarding the many intersections of business, professional and collegiate sports, and family law.






L aurie Bauer is a founding partner of Cooley’s Chicago office, which opened in May 2021. She joined the firm as a partner in its international, market-leading emerging companies and venture capital practice, and currently serves as co-head of Cooley’s Chicago corporate group. Laurie’s practice is focused on representing emerging and growth-stage companies and the investors who support them, including venture capital and private equity firms and family offices. She regularly advises clients on myriad capital raising transactions, ranging from seed to large late-stage financings. Laurie also counsels companies at all stages on a wide variety of day-to-day corporate matters. While her clients are not limited to northern Illinois, Laurie has focused on Chicago and the greater Midwest, and strived to make a meaningful contribution to the region’s growing venture ecosystem. In addition to maintaining her practice, Laurie’s leadership responsibilities at Cooley have included a wide range of strategic and hiring initiatives. The office opened with 10 partners and – just over a year later – now counts approximately 50 lawyers, more than half of whom are women and nearly half of whom are racially diverse or identify as LGBTQ+. Laurie has contributed to Cooley Chicago’s success by helping to recruit and build a transformative team of staff and lawyers who share a commitment to excellence, client service, innovation and the firm’s enduring dedication to building an enterprise that reflects equality for all. Acknowledging her own strong female role models, business partners and other mentors, Laurie prioritizes paying their influence forward by supporting, mentoring and providing opportunities to other female lawyers. Laurie has played an active role in growing Cooley Chicago’s formal mentoring program, which provides learning opportunities and support for lawyers in the firm’s Chicago office so they can develop their skills in Cooley’s collaborative culture. Beyond Cooley, Laurie works to promote growth and diversity in Chicago’s greater professional community, specifically in the startup ecosystem and entrepreneurial community. She serves on the board of directors of 1871, a Chicago nonprofit that serves to support founders with an idea, growth stage teams and corporate innovators. Laurie is also involved in Cooley’s partnership with Hyde Park Angels, a Chicago-centered venture capital group focused on angel investments. She believes the Midwest is an emerging global hub of opportunity and enjoys working with early-stage companies and entrepreneurs, including many with women founders. Laurie has lectured at Northwestern Pritzker School of Law, the University of Michigan Law School and other organizations with large-scale reach on topics relating to venture financings and other corporate matters. She has three daughters and hopes they will find Chicago to be a community of immense opportunity and support in the future. Laurie earned her J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School in 2005 after receiving her B.A. from Carleton College, where she was a three-sport varsity athlete. Before joining Cooley, she was a partner at Latham & Watkins, where she developed her practice and gained valuable experience working with a wide range of clients.





K enyatta Beverly is Labor and Employment Counsel for The Davey Tree Expert Company. Davey provides a wide range of arboricultural, horticultural, environmental, utility support, and consulting services to customers throughout the U.S. and Canada. Davey employs nearly 13,000 employees, making it one of the largest employee-owned companies in the country. Kenyatta provides Davey’s executive team, Board of Directors, operations management, and human resources department with trusted strategic counsel on all labor and employment related issues. From her first day at Davey, Kenyatta has been a force for meaningful change, encouraging the implementation of policies that make Davey an even more inclusive workplace for all employees. Kenyatta was instrumental to the formation of Davey’s Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee, and along with her human resources partners, formally created Employee Affinity Groups. Prior to joining Davey, Kenyatta served as the Director of Labor Relations for Acero Charter Schools, Inc.; as Labor Relations Counsel for the State of Illinois; as an Administrative Law Judge at the Illinois Labor Relations Board; and as an associate at both Rooney Rippie & Ratnaswamy LLP and Mayer Brown LLP. Kenyatta is also heavily involved in various civic and professional organizations. In particular, from 2020-2021, she was the President of the Black Women Lawyers’ Association of Greater Chicago, Inc., an organization founded in 1987, dedicated to addressing issues unique to Black women attorneys and law students, supporting their advancement in the profession, and advancing civil and human rights. Kenyatta led BWLA during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, rising to the challenge of successfully leading during the most challenging times. Under her leadership, BWLA launched the Law Student Hardship Grant; awarded nearly $50,000 in scholarships; and formed the Expungement & Sealing and Civil Rights Action committees. Kenyatta cares deeply for our youth and mentors students at all grade levels, from elementary through law school. Representation is extremely important to Kenyatta because she would not be an attorney if she had not met a Black woman law student during a 3rd grade field trip. That encounter left an indelible imprint on Kenyatta that sparked her interest in the law. Kenyatta hopes to have a similar positive impact on the students that she mentors, even if they pursue a career outside of the law. Kenyatta is a recognized leader and has been honored by multiple organizations. Notably, in 2021, Diversity MBA Magazine named her a Top 100 Under 50 Executive Leader. Additionally, in 2020, she received the She Shines Award from Girls Inc. of Chicago, an organization that seeks to inspire girls to be strong, smart, and bold. Kenyatta was recently appointed to Girls Inc.’s Associate Board. Kenyatta is from East St. Louis, Illinois. She earned her B.A. from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and her J.D. from the University of Wisconsin Law School. Kenyatta is a proud member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. She loves fishing, enjoys weightlifting, is a Plant Momma, eats way too many Sour Patch Kids, and lives for her air fryer.





C arolyn Blessing is a Partner in Locke Lord’s Chicago office and a member of the Firm’s IP Pharmaceutical Practice Group, concentrating her practice in IP pharmaceutical matters and Hatch-Waxman litigation. A Partner at the Firm since 2016, she represents pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies in all aspects of federal intellectual property litigation, including pre- litigation activities, Paragraph IV Certifications, filing, fact and expert discovery, claim construction, motion practice, pre-trial, trial, post- trial and appellate phases. Most recently, she had significant roles in two fully virtual federal trials. A highly respected thought leader in her field, Carolyn regularly speaks and writes on topics related to law, policy, and advancement of women in the legal profession. Carolyn serves as the Firm’s Chicago office Hiring Partner and is a member of its Women’s Initiative and Law School Recruiting Coordinating Committee. She is immensely passionate about the advancement of women throughout their careers and is committed to empowering other female attorneys to develop their own strengths. Carolyn serves as the current Vice Chair of the National Board of the Coalition of Women’s Initiatives in Law, a nonprofit membership association dedicated to enhancing the recruitment, retention and promotion of women lawyers and supporting women’s initiatives in law firms and companies. She has served in various leadership positions within the organization both nationally and in Chicago, including as past President and member of the Executive Committee for the Chicago Chapter, Secretary and Treasurer of the National Board, and she continues to serve as the Chicago Board Liaison for Locke Lord. Carolyn also received the Coalition’s 2018 Leadership Award for her work in support of its mission. In addition, Carolyn has been recognized for her significant contributions to the Chicago legal community through her active engagement in several organizations across the city. In 2021 she was named by Crain’s Chicago Business as a 2021 Notable Rising Star in Law. She enjoys giving back to the community and consistently encourages young professionals to be involved in organizations they are passionate about. A staunch supporter of Chicago Women in Intellectual Property (ChiWIP), Carolyn was among the first of its members. Carolyn also volunteers her time with Step Up, an organization dedicated to help girls and gender-expansive teens who may be facing systemic barriers to unlock their potential by empowering them to become confident, career-focused and ready to join the next generation of leaders, as a mentor. She served as Chair of the St. Procopius Legal Aid Clinic from 2014 through 2016, for which she earned the 2016 Distinguished Service Award from Chicago Volunteer Legal Services. She has also served as a Board member with the Richard Linn American Inn of Court. An ardent supporter of the arts throughout Chicago, Carolyn has been deeply involved with the Joffrey Ballet since 2012. Currently, she Co-Chairs its Generation J Leadership Council (formerly the Joffrey Auxiliary Board), a position she has held since 2016. Carolyn previously served as Vice President of the Board for 137 Films, a nonprofit documentary production company that promotes science through storytelling.



A fter eight years in private practice with boutique litigation firms, Eleanor P. Cabreré joined Navistar, Inc. in 2001 as an Attorney. She quickly rose within the ranks of Navistar, holding numerous positions and managing various practice groups, with increasing levels of responsibility. These roles form the foundation of Eleanor’s wide breadth of experience in various areas of legal practice and extensive knowledge of the truck and school bus industries. Eleanor currently serves as Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary of Navistar International Corporation, a part of the TRATON GROUP. She previously served as Deputy General Counsel, Corporate Secretary and Chief Litigation Counsel at Navistar, Inc. Navistar International Corporation is a holding company, with its headquarters based in Lisle, Illinois. Its subsidiaries and affiliates produce International® brand commercial trucks, proprietary diesel engines and IC Bus ™ brand school and commercial buses. Other affiliates provide truck and diesel engine service parts and financing services. With a keen legal mind and business acumen, Eleanor has counseled Navistar through challenging economic times, an ever- changing regulatory environment, and technological advancements within the industry. Throughout her legal career at Navistar, she has also played a key role in successfully navigating the company through significant litigation and negotiating and completing strategic commercial transactions. She played a pivotal role in the 2017 Strategic Alliance with TRATON SE, and later the merger with TRATON in 2021. Eleanor understands the truck industry and the needs of the business and uses that knowledge to provide sound and practical counsel. Her often unique perspective, exceptional problem-solving skills and ability to question conventional thinking have led to the successful resolution of numerous challenges facing Navistar as well as the execution of strategic initiatives. For approximately a decade, Eleanor has served as the executive sponsor for the Office of the General Counsel’s Diversity Committee. In 2008, she received the Company’s highest honor, the Chairman’s Award. She was a finalist for another Navistar award in 2020 that celebrates the accomplishments of women in the company. For many years, Eleanor has been an invited panelist for various programs hosted by professional organizations or corporations. Since its inception in the early 2000s, Eleanor has been a member of the Black Law Students Association Alumni Board at Indiana University, Mauer School of Law, holding various positions throughout the years, including President. She is also an active member of Jack & Jill of America, Inc., an organization of mothers dedicated to nurturing future African-American leaders by strengthening children through leadership development, volunteer service, philanthropic giving and civic duty. Eleanor earned her bachelor’s degree in Economics from Northwestern University and her juris doctorate from Indiana University, Maurer School of Law, Order of the Barristers. Eleanor lives in Naperville with her husband, three children and two dogs. She is an avid sports fan, in particular football and basketball. She enjoys traveling, music and Northwestern football games. ELEANOR CABRERÉ SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, GENERAL COUNSEL AND CORPORATE SECRETARY Navistar, Inc.






S ara Davis joined Cogan & Power in 2018 as the firm’s first female partner. She concentrates her practice in the areas of catastrophic personal injuries, wrongful death, medical malpractice, and FELA claims. Sara has helped achieve dozens of multi-million-dollar settlements and verdicts in her sixteen years of practice. Last year Sara was part of the trial team that obtained a record $42 million dollar verdict in Kendall County on behalf of a paralyzed veteran. The previous high verdict in Kendall County was thirteen million. Sara has tried cases throughout Illinois and Wisconsin in both state and federal court. She has successfully appealed cases in the Illinois Appellate Court as well as the US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. Opposing counsel has described Sara as a fierce advocate for her clients. She is well prepared, detail oriented, and always a professional. Sara’s poise and intellect offer her a presence both inside and outside the courtroom. Sara is often asked by colleagues to consult on cases to share her knowledge, strategy, and skill. Sara is humbled that her clients invite her into their lives during the worst and most frightening days of their lives. Sara navigates them through the complex and difficult litigation process to ensure their voices are heard and they receive full compensation for their losses. Sharing this experience with her clients has resulted in close relationships that last well beyond the end of their legal representation. Sara’s skills and achievements have been recognized by her peers as she was named as one of the Law Bulletin’s Media’s 40 Illinois Attorneys to Watch Under Forty in 2015, a Rising Star for the last nine years and ascending to the designation of Super Lawyer. She was also recognized as a Top 10 Female Lawyer under 40 in Illinois in 2020. She has received the service award from the Women’s Bar Association and the Volunteer Lawyer of the Year Award from the Lake County Bar Association. Sara is well respected by her colleagues. Sara is often asked to speak to legal professionals. She has spoken at a number of events including for the Attorney Information Exchange Group, Women’s Bar Association, Association of Plaintiff Interstate Trucking Lawyers, Illinois State Bar Association, and is a frequent speaker for the Illinois Trial Lawyers Association. She has written a number of articles for various legal publications and has held leadership positions within several legal organizations, including most recently being the Chair for the Illinois Trial Lawyers Women’s Caucus. Sara is dedicated to mentoring law students and young lawyers and has served as a mentor through the IL Supreme Court’s 2Civility program for many years. Sara lives in Chicago with her husband, Tim, and her daughter Samantha.





N ancy DePodesta serves as co-chair of Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr’s White Collar and Government Enforcement Practice. A highly acclaimed trial lawyer and former federal prosecutor, she represents organizations and individuals in white collar criminal defense cases, internal investigations and corporate compliance matters. She has extensive experience conducting sensitive investigations for high-profile companies, universities and other entities involving allegations of potential criminal violations and other claims of misconduct. Nancy also represents individual clients in government investigations and enforcement actions or prosecutions being conducted by U.S. Attorney’s Offices, the Securities & Exchange Commission, Internal Revenue Service, Federal Bureau of Investigation, various Offices of the Inspector General, and other law enforcement and regulatory agencies. These investigations and charges span a range of potential violations including mail and wire fraud, securities fraud, tax fraud, health care fraud, public corruption and bribery. Throughout her years at the firm, Nancy has led teams of attorneys in conducting investigations on a variety of issues, including allegations involving misstatements made by corporate representatives in company filings, the purported failure of a University to not properly investigate and address complaints of sexual misconduct by a tenured professor, as well as the misappropriation of funds for personal gain by a Vice President of Operations and CFO of a company. She has also represented a charter school, companies, corporate executives, mid-level employees, state officials and others who are under investigation by various law enforcement and regulatory agencies. Prior to joining the firm, Nancy served for twelve years as an Assistant United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois. She tried eighteen federal cases, including complex, multi-week, multi-defendant trials and briefed and argued multiple appeals before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. In honor of her service, she was awarded the Chicago Crime Commission Star of Distinction and recognized for superior performance as an Assistant United States Attorney by the United States Attorney’s Office and Federal Bureau of Investigation. Nancy’s continued excellence as an attorney and sincere investment in her colleagues makes her an inspiring role model and a trusted champion. While continuing to provide outstanding advocacy and service to clients, she offers tremendous support, encouragement and guidance to the next generation of women attorneys, and works to advance women lawyers and leaders as a Steering Committee member for the firm’s Women’s Development Initiative. In recognition of her leadership and influence, Nancy was named to the Notable Gen X Leaders in Law list by Crain’s Chicago Business in 2021. She has been named one of “America’s Leading Lawyers in Litigation: White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations” by Chambers USA since 2019 and ranked as a Litigation Star by Benchmark Litigation since 2021. Based on her work as a federal prosecutor, Nancy was appointed to a one-year term as a Commissioner on the Illinois Concealed Carry Licensing Review Board — and was recently reappointed for a four-year term.





J ill Felkins has been appointed the Managing Shareholder of the firm’s Chicago office. She is the founder and co-chair of Forward Together, the firm’s women’s initiative. She also serves as a member of the firm’s Strategic Planning Committee and Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee. Jill joined the firm out of law school in 2007. She became a shareholder in 2016. Jill Felkins has been appointed the managing shareholder of Segal McCambridge Singer & Mahoney Chicago office. She is the founder and co-chair of Forward Together, the firm’s women’s initiative. She also serves as a member of the firm’s Strategic Planning Committee and Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee. Jill joined the firm out of the Indiana University Bloomington Maurer School of Law in 2007 and became a shareholder in 2016. Jill is a trial and appellate attorney who devotes her practice to defending clients in the areas of product liability, premises liability, consumer claims including FDCPA and TCPA matters, construction negligence, personal injury, class action, toxic tort, environmental litigation, transportation and trucking. Jill provides a wide range of litigation services to her clients from initial analysis and pretrial workup through trial and appeal. She practices in state and federal courts in Illinois, Indiana and beyond. Clients trust that Jill will tailor a unique and strategic approach to best serve their needs and achieve a favorable outcome. She has obtained summary judgment for national and local clients in multiple areas of law, including premises, toxic tort, transportation and environmental contamination coverage litigation. Her appellate practice includes favorable results in post- trial and interlocutory appeals. Jill is on the Board of Directors for the Illinois Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association, and she serves as chair of the Board Development and Recruitment Committee. She also volunteers as a guardian ad litem through Chicago Volunteer Legal Services. She has been honored in 2019 in Law Bulletin Media’s Forty Under 40 and Emerging Lawyers in 2017 and Rising Stars in 2014.



A nn Ford’s healthcare career is defined by her exceptional leadership across many facets of the industry. She has served as in-house counsel to two large, metropolitan health systems, as a C-suite executive at a leading medical device manufacturer, and even worked as a practitioner, beginning her career as a nurse who provided care to high-risk obstetrics patients. Now, as a partner at Hall Prangle and Schoonveld (HPS) and managing director of HPS Advise, the firm’s consulting arm, she puts that that diversity of experience to work on behalf of her clients. Ann came to HPS in 2019 after nearly nine years as Deputy General Counsel, Global Chief Ethics and Compliance Officer and Global Privacy Officer at Medline Industries. There, she developed the global ethics, compliance, conflict of interest, privacy, anti- corruption, and medical affairs programs. Before that, Ann was Vice President and General Counsel for two Chicago-area hospitals in succession, Rush North Shore Medical Center and Rush Copley Medical Center. Another hallmark of Ann’s career is her commitment to mentorship and philanthropy. An active and passionate volunteer, Ann serves on the board of trustees and is the founding Co-Chair of the Women’s Leadership Council at Roosevelt University of Roosevelt University in Chicago. She also is a board member of NorthShore University Health System, Northwest Community Healthcare, Giordano Dance Chicago, Medical Affairs Professional Society, and the Partnership for a Connected Illinois. As part of that philanthropic service, Ann has chaired numerous committees and working groups. Ann also serves as a formal and informal mentor to students, attorneys, and professionals. While at Medline and as a hospital executive, Ann championed the members of her teams—many of whom were women—as they became specialists and leaders in their fields. She now mentors nursing students at her alma mater, Marquette University in Milwaukee, and also serves as a mentor to students at Roosevelt University. Likewise, she continues to informally mentor attorneys and non-attorneys both at HPS and HPS Advise. Ann studied law at DePaul University, earning her J.D. in 1992. She then joined Locke Lord (then called Lord Bissell & Brook) as a medical malpractice attorney. She practiced there for nearly eight years, working alongside several of the attorneys she would later rejoin at HPS. In her legal work at HPS, Ann guides her clients through the complexity of healthcare regulations including issues around physician contracts and credentialing, anti-kickback statutes, employment, and the growing challenges presented by the collection and electronic retention of patient health information. At HPS Advise, Ann leads a team of professionals that consults with healthcare organizations, hospital systems, life science companies and manufacturers of durable medical equipment and home medical equipment. The HPS Advise team has expertise in forensic discovery of digital health records, compliance, conflict of interest, and privacy programs, and healthcare risk management, particularly in the field of obstetrics. ANN FORD PARTNER AND MANAGING DIRECTOR HPS ADVISE Hall Prangle & Schoonveld






S andra Frantzen is a partner at McAndrews Held & Malloy where, for over 20 years, she has assisted clients in building intellectual property portfolios and resolving worldwide intellectual property disputes. Sandra serves as lead trial and outside counsel for start-up and Fortune 500 companies, focusing on patent litigation and intellectual property counseling in the medical device, pharmaceutical, chemical, biotechnology, and consumer products industries. Sandra has appeared as lead trial counsel on behalf of clients in federal courts throughout the country, has managed worldwide patent litigations and disputes, and has handled disputes with alleged damages in the hundreds of millions. Sandra participates in all aspects of dispute resolution from pre-litigation consultation to trial and appellate work. Her work includes assessing legal issues surrounding clients’ technologies, formulating litigation and dispute resolution strategy, appearing and arguing in court, handling jury trials and arbitration proceedings, and spearheading mediation and settlement sessions. One client from an international biotechnology company stated, “Sandra was absolutely instrumental in the successful defense and resolution of this case that was, quite literally, ‘bet the company’ litigation. This experience led my company to work with Sandra on multiple other matters, and she has never failed to deliver….As a client and as a professional colleague, this is one lawyer that I definitely want on my side of the table.” Sandra is a member of the Patent Bar and is registered to practice before the U.S. Patent Office. She has served as lead trial counsel in several inter partes review proceedings and has received multiple favorable decisions from the Patent Trial and Appeal Board after full trial on the merits. Sandra regularly advises clients on transactional issues including strategic intellectual property development, acquisition, protection, and enforcement. She is experienced in evaluating patent portfolios, drafting and negotiating license and manufacturing agreements, performing due diligence review and analysis of intellectual property rights for corporate acquisitions and mergers, and assigning clients in obtaining patent, copying, and trademark registrations. Sandra has served as lead intellectual property counsel assisting clients in corporate acquisitions. Sandra has degrees in chemistry and environmental science and graduated with honors from The University of Chicago Law School. Sandra is past President, and currently serves on the Board, of the Arab American Bar Association of Illinois (AABAR). She is a founding Steering Committee member of the National Arab American Bar Association. She serves on the working executive committee of the Alliance of Bar Associations for Judicial Screening and is the co- chair of the Judicial Evaluation Committee of AABAR. Sandra was named one of the “40 Illinois Attorneys Under 40” and received the Building Bridges award in a joint endeavor between the Decalogue Society and AABAR.



MARGARET GISCH PARTNER, PRACTICE GROUP CHAIR Golan Christie Taglia LLP M argaret (Peggy) A. Gisch serves as litigation practice group chair at Golan Christie Taglia and represents clients throughout Chicagoland in matters related to trade secrets, shareholder disputes, restrictive covenants, defending employment claims and contract issues. She is a member of GCT’s executive committee and has gained recognition for her detail- oriented and strategic approach to counseling clients in their most important matters. Peggy’s success as an attorney is due to her strong commitment to her profession. Her passion for legal advocacy and role as a mentor within the firm sets her apart and inspires her colleagues to serve their clients to the best of their abilities. Beyond Gisch’s legal work on behalf of clients, she has played an outsized role in ensuring that the firm remains a diverse, inclusive and welcoming place for all individuals. She was largely responsible for the hiring of several women attorneys and actively mentors many younger lawyers as they forge their careers. She has been influential in leading young lawyers and encouraging them to carve their own paths as they build their practice. Peggy’s dedication to diversity and inclusion is also evident in the number of women that inhabit leadership roles at GCT, including, for example, the employment law practice group, which she started many years ago. Her aptitude for identifying promising young lawyers has allowed GCT to grow as a firm substantially in both experience and culture. Outside of the firm, Peggy enjoys connecting with the culinary diversity found in Chicago and traveling to new destinations. She is a member and fund raiser with Chicago’s Cystic Fibrosis Foundation chapter. As a proud alumna of Saint Mary’s College, Peggy has spent time speaking to students at the college and has even recruited law students to join the firm after their studies. She shares her time with students at various law schools across the Midwest to discuss their aspirations in the legal field and mentors them on the best paths they can take to accomplish their goals. Peggy is consistently recognized by Illinois Super Lawyers for her exceptional legal work and commitment to the profession.




PATRICIA BROWN HOLMES MANAGING PARTNER Riley Safer Holmes & Cancila LLP A s a former state court judge, experienced prosecutor, and defense lawyer, Riley Safer Holmes & Cancila LLP (RSHC) Managing Partner Patricia Brown Holmes is renowned for her comprehensive trial experience and wisdom as a trusted advisor for clients. Over the past decade and a half, in her role as a successful and sought-after defense attorney, she has focused her practice on high-stakes, “bet-the-company” commercial disputes and litigation; class actions; investigations and white collar criminal defense; environmental, social, and governance issues (ESG) such as diversity audits; and risk, reputation, and crisis management counseling for her wide range of public and private corporate clients. A woman of exceptional talent, intelligence, and vitality, Patricia has chalked up enough accomplishments to fill three lifetimes. She is the first African-American woman to manage and have her name on the door of a national law firm that is not women- or minority- owned, and one of just a handful of Illinois lawyers who have tried cases in state, city, and federal court as well as state appellate, federal appellate, and Illinois Supreme Court. She is also co-writer of a brief that was presented before the US Supreme Court. Patricia is an avid and committed champion of diversity, equity, and inclusion in the legal profession, as demonstrated most concretely by RSHC’s 39% women and 33% racial/ethnic minorities percentages, which far exceed the national averages. Patricia practices the art of communicating with government officials by employing equal measures of conviction, clarity, and tact. Her experience on both sides of the bench has given her valuable insight into how to analyze cases from all angles. This rare combination makes her a powerful asset, valuable partner, and trusted counselor to clients across industries, including education, transportation, manufacturing, entertainment, industrial, health care, and food and beverage. Patricia has received countless accolades for her impressive professional achievements and for her dedication to the legal industry. Recently she was selected a Managing Partner of the Year honoree by Corporate Counsel Women, Influence & Power in Law Awards 2021, appointed Co Chair of the National Football League (NFL) Diversity Advisory Council (DAC), and received the 2022 Top 10 Illinois Super Lawyers distinction. A trusted advocate and community leader, Patricia serves on the University of Illinois System Board of Trustees and The Chicago Network. She chairs the board of Just the Beginning – A Pipeline Organization. She is a former President of the Chicago Bar Association, Black Women Lawyers’ Association, and Harriet’s Daughters. She is a former board member of La Rabida Children’s Hospital. She has served in a variety of appointed positions such as the Special Prosecutor in the Laquan McDonald matter, the Trustee of Burr Oak Cemetery, and as co-chair of the Judicial Selection Commission for the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.






C ecilia A. Horan is a judge is the Circuit Court of Cook County. She joined the bench in 2017, and presently sits in the General Chancery Division where she hears a wide variety of cases seeking equitable and other relief. She was formerly assigned to the Mortgage Foreclosure/Mechanics Lien section of the Chancery Division, and the First Municipal Division, where she presided over cases involving tort and contract claims, evictions, and traffic matters. Prior to her judicial service, Judge Horan was a litigation partner at the national law firm of Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP, where she practiced for 20 years. Her law practice mainly involved the defense of individuals and businesses in high-exposure and complex personal injury lawsuits. She was actively involved in firm culture: she was a co-chair of her firm’s mentoring committee in the Chicago office and a co-founder of her firm’s LGBTQ affinity group. Judge Horan is a member of the Illinois Judges Association (“IJA”), and co-chairs its Media Committee. Her committee founded the IJA’s Judicial Independence Project, which endeavors to educate the public, through videos, social media, and community outreach, about the important concept of judicial independence - the foundation of fair and competent decision making based on facts and law, without regard to outside pressure or political influence. Judge Horan is the vice president of the Alliance of Illinois Judges (“AIJ”), an association of LGBTQ judges in the Illinois state and federal judiciary. She is also the immediate-past president of LAGBAC, Chicago’s LGBTQ+ Bar Association, one of the largest and most respected LGBTQ bar associations in the country. She continues to sit on the organization’s board of directors, and is a co-chair of its Mentoring Committee. As a lawyer and a judge, Judge Horan has organized and presented numerous continuing legal education programs on topics ranging from litigation strategy to the state of the law affecting women and minorities. In April and June, she, along with some colleagues, presented a program entitled “LGBTQ People in Your Courtroom” to judges around the state at the Illinois judiciary’s bi-annual judicial education conference. The program was designed to give judges a greater understanding of legal issues affecting LGBTQ families and cultural competency in working with LGBTQ legal professionals and litigants. Judge Horan believes strongly in the benefits of mentoring, for both the mentor and the mentee. She feels blessed to have had many wonderful mentors throughout her life, and has acted as a mentor to many. She encourages young people to find mentors, both through organized mentoring programs and casually, and frequently reminds her mentees to pay it forward when they are in a position to mentor a young person. Judge Horan lives in the northern suburbs with her wife and their two children.





J anelle Ibeling is a partner in Sidley’s award-winning Investment Funds practice where she has practiced law for almost two decades. With Chicago playing a major role in the global hedge fund industry, Janelle uses her front-row seat to advise investment managers and investors on the structure and operational needs of hedge funds and private equity funds. She counsels clients in connection with single investor funds, managed accounts, co- investments, and regulatory matters. Janelle spends a significant amount of time advising asset managers on life cycle events, including agreements among principals, seeding capital, spin-outs of funds/teams of employees, revenue shares, and acquisitions/sales of equity. Highly regarded by clients and peers, Janelle is ranked in the 2022 edition of Chambers USA for Investment Funds: Hedge Funds in the USA – Nationwide, where clients have indicated she is “a great lawyer who is a pleasure to work with.” Clients have also highlighted her “outstanding legal skills” and “cutting-edge knowledge.” Clients commented in the 2021 edition that she “handles extremely important and sensitive negotiations with our high-profile clients.” She has also been described as “extraordinarily talented” in the client comment section of The Legal 500 USA. Janelle has also been recognized in Who’s Who Legal: Private Funds 2018 – 2022. Janelle earned her law degree from the University of Minnesota. Janelle prioritizes mentoring through extensive involvement at Sidley and in the community. She is involved with the renowned Chicago Scholars, which mentors high school students aspiring to be first generation college students. Janelle regularly mentors young female lawyers through a Chicago-based mentoring program. Janelle is a prominent leader, mentoring and developing careers of young Sidley lawyers through the Evaluation of Associates Committee and the Diversity Mentoring Program. Emma Rodriguez-Ayala, General Counsel of Legal & General Investment Management America said, “When I first started my career, Janelle was instrumental in showing me the ropes, helping me navigate partner dynamics, and sharing the joys of afternoon frozen yogurt as the energy boost for a long evening of work. She was my first call both when I needed work and when I was overwhelmed with work. I ultimately decided that I wanted to go in-house, and I could only do that because of the time Janelle spent teaching me the basics of asset management.” Janelle’s civic leadership includes serving on the board of Chicago Cares where she has participated in community involvement activities. Janelle is a member of the Granting Committee of Help For Children, which provides grants to child abuse prevention and treatment interventions. Janelle is also a member of the Advisory Committee for Invest for Kids. She has coached elementary students for Girls on the Run. Janelle and her family have also served as a host family for Safe Families, which provides safe environments for children while their parents face challenges presented by homelessness and addiction. She and her family welcomed children into their home and provided a nurturing and healthy environment. Janelle lives in the northern suburbs of Chicago with her husband and their two teenage children.





S tephanie Jones has earned the reputation of having an unmatched work ethic, being fiercely devoted to her clients, and a natural leader. This reputation is illustrated by a key accomplishment - being named Assistant Managing Partner of Gordon Rees Scully Mansukhani, LLP’s Chicago office at the age of 34. Her firm is the first and only law firm to have offices in all 50 states and Jones proudly helps manage one of its largest offices. As the daughter of two small business owners, protecting companies from business interruption and legal risk is part of the fabric of who Stephanie Jones is. In her practice, Jones defends manufacturers, business owners, premise owners, employers, decision-makers, and companies in commercial, business, employment, consumer, products liability, professional liability and environmental/toxic tort litigation matters. From complex litigation to negotiating through business disputes, her experience has given her the ability to provide a comprehensive suite of litigation services to her clients. Jones has argued before state and federal courts and agencies throughout the country, litigated at the trial court level and up to the appellate courts, and counseled clients through business divorces, regulatory compliance issues for new and innovative products, and complex employment disputes. Jones currently serves as National Coordinating Counsel to a Fortune 200 company for nationwide product recall litigation, regional litigation counsel for a foreign manufacturing client, and outside general employment counsel in employment matters to a national art supply company. Jones is also active in her support of women in the legal community. For example, she was one of the first attorneys in the Chicago area to organize and lead a sold-out panel on #MeToo in the workplace. She currently serves as the Vice President of the Chicago Chapter of the Coalition of Women’s Initiatives in Law. She is also active in the Women in Law Committee of DRI. In 2020, Jones was selected as one of the “40 Under Forty” Illinois attorneys to watch by the Law Bulletin Media, publishers of Chicago Lawyer magazine and the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin. Jones has also been named an Illinois “Rising Star” by Thomson Reuters’ Illinois Super Lawyers and an Illinois Emerging Lawyer in Commercial Litigation and Employment: Management Law by Law Bulletin Media Leading Lawyers. Outside the courtroom, Jones spends her time with her husband, two sons, and 14-year old Australian Shepard. She enjoys almost any competitive sport, but favors playing tennis, swimming, and running



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