40 Under Forty 2023

E lizabeth Babbitt’s peers routinely praise this business litigation specialist as one of the most talented, dedicated and ethical trial attorneys in the Chicago area. This isn’t surprising. During her relatively short career, Babbitt has already established herself as a go-to advisor for companies and munici- palities that face complex class-action litigation and employment issues. An example of Babbitt’s legal skills? She recently proved to a federal judge that the plaintiff had engaged in the intentional spoliation of evi- dence, recommending dismissal with prejudice as a result. This is a rare sanction in federal court. Another example? Babbitt recently served as post-trial and appellate counsel in securing a toxic tort plaintiff’s $ 3 8 3 million jury award, the largest single-plaintiff award in Illinois history. Babbitt also has provided litigation support to one of the country’s largest transit agencies. In a recent matter for that client, Babbitt partici- pated in a contested evidentiary hearing that demonstrated that certain claims made by the plaintiff lacked credibility. The case settled with the plaintiff paying to get out of the lawsuit. “Elizabeth is smart, articulate and appropriately aggressive on behalf of her clients,” said Allison Czerniak, an attorney with Chicago’s Vedder Price. Her peers cite Babbitt’s dedication to securing the best outcomes for clients as a main reason for her successful career. Babbitt, they say, often earns unique and exceptional results for her clients in cut- ting-edge, high-profile litigation. “Elizabeth’s clients rely on her counsel for their most difficult issues, and she prides herself on providing impactful, creative and forward-looking advice,” said Monique Bhargava, an attorney in the Chicago office of law firm Reed Smith LLP. Babbitt is also a leader at Taft Stettinius & Hollister. In 2023, she com- pleted a two-year term on the law firm’s Executive Committee. She also chairs the Women of Taft Chicago affinity group and the Taft Chicago Associate Advancement and Recruitment Committee. While serving on these committees, Babbitt led the way in Taft’s adoption of a gender-neutral 16-week parental leave policy for all attor- neys and paralegals at the firm. Babbitt is active, too, in the Chicago Bar Association, where she has participated as a lead investigator of the Judicial Evaluations Committee, assisting the bar in making recommendations for judicial candidates. Scott Spears, assistant general counsel at the Chicago Police Depart- ment, said that Babbitt has become a trusted counsel. She has earned the respect of not only her clients and fellow attorneys, but of her opponents, too, Spears said. “I rely upon Elizabeth’s counsel for some of the most difficult issues facing the Chicago Police Department,” Spears said. “I appreciate her impactful, creative and forward-looking advice. Particularly exceptional is how Elizabeth expeditiously approaches challenges, addressing even the most hostile of opponents without passion and professionally ad- dressing difficult issues solely on their merits.”.


AGE 39

FIRM Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP

LAW SCHOOL University of Illinois College of Law

AREA OF PRACTICE Business litigation, employment litigation


I appreciate her impactful, creative and forward-looking advice.”



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