Race and the Law Symposium
“Breaking the Glass Ceiling: Working Against Discrimination in the Legal Profession.”
Wednesday, April 17, 2013
Registration –11:30 AM
Luncheon Panel Discussion—12 PM- 2 PM
This program has been approved by the MCLE Board for 1.5 hours of credit.
Philip H. Corboy Law Center, 25 East Pearson Street, Kasbeer Hall- 15th Floor
To RSVP, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Recent statistics indicate that while legal employers are actively recruiting diverse applicants, these minority lawyers rarely advance to the upper ranks of the legal profession. This year’s Race and the Law Symposium will explore the disparities that are present in the work force, and how they affect the legal practice in general. Specifically, panelist will address how minorities in their respective fields have worked to overcome barriers and become successful lawyers. While the discussion will focus primarily on racial minorities in the legal profession, it will also address the disparities present within other minority groups.
Professor Neil Williams – Loyola University of Chicago
Professor Williams received his undergraduate degree summa cum laude from Duke University and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. Following his graduation from law school at the University of Chicago, he served as law clerk to the Hon. George N. Leighton of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. After his clerkship he joined the Chicago law firm of Sidley & Austin, where he handled general corporate finance and securities law matters. Professor Williams joined the full-time School of Law faculty in 1989 where he teaches courses in contract law, international sales law, as well as sales and secured transactions. Professor Williams is also the Loyola’s chapter of the Black Law Student Association’s faculty advisor.
Romeo S. Quinto, Jr. – Partner, Morgan Lewis; Asian Bar Association
Mr. Quinto earned his J.D. from Loyola University Chicago School of Law in 2000. From 2001 to 2003, Mr. Quinto served as a law clerk to Judge David D. Dowd, Jr., of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio. Mr. Quinto currently serves as Partner at Morgan Lewis’s Litigation Practice. His practice focuses on complex commercial litigation, with an emphasis on private antitrust litigation, class action defense, and trade secret disputes. His appellate victories include overturning class certification in antitrust matters and obtaining a judgment exceeding $1 million in an insurance brokerage dispute Mr. Quinto's pro bono work includes representing a client before the District of Columbia Office of Citizen Complaint Review, which led to new police policy regarding the treatment of minors accompanied by an adult under arrest. Mr. Quinto is also a member of the Dean's Diversity Council, Young Alumni Events Committee, Diversity Mentor, First-Year Student Mentor, and Moot Court Coach at the Loyola University Chicago School of Law.
Michelle Kohut – Corboy & Demetrio; Women’s Bar Association
A graduate of Loyola University Chicago School of Law, Michelle was a Judicial Law Clerk to William D. Maddux, Presiding Judge of the Law Division of the Circuit Court of Cook County. In 2004, Michelle M. Kohut joined the law firm of Corboy & Demetrio, where she practices in all areas of personal injury law, including cases arising from automobile collisions, construction negligence, premises liability and products liability. She has tried many personal injury cases to verdict in Chicago and has obtained numerous multi-million dollar settlements. Michelle is very active in local and national bar associations, including the Women’s Bar Association of Illinois, where she serves as Treasurer and is Chair of the Political Action Committee. She also serves as Vice-Chair on the Board of Directors for Women Everywhere, a community service project which seeks to open doors to women and children in need and to expose high school girls to challenging careers in the legal profession. In 2007, she was named one of "40 Illinois Attorneys Under Forty to Watch" by the Law Bulletin Publishing Company and was designated an Illinois Super Lawyer, "Rising Star," in 2008.
Jennifer Franklin -- Assistant Dean for Career Services, Southern Illinois University
Jennifer D. Franklin is the Assistant Dean for Career Services at Southern Illinois University School of Law where she supervises all aspects of the Office of Career Services Office including: counseling students and alumni in career planning skills and job search strategies. Prior to joining SIU School of Law, Dean Franklin was an Assistant Attorney General in the Office of the Illinois Attorney General where she was a member of the Predatory Lending Unit in the Consumer Fraud Bureau. While with the Office of Illinois Attorney General, she was a member of the team of attorneys that handled the Office’s predatory lending investigation, litigation and settlement with Countrywide Home Loans. Dean Franklin currently serves on the Diversity Committee of the ABA Business Law Section and the Standing Committee on Law Related Education for the Public of the Illinois State Bar Association. In addition, she has served as Co-chair of the Law Student Outreach Committee of the Black Women Lawyer’s Association.
MiAngel Cody – Federal Defender Program; Just the Beginning Foundation
MiAngel Cody is an Assistant Federal Defender in Chicago. She represents indigent persons accused of federal crimes. Ms. Cody has defended hundreds of persons in federal court. Her criminal practice ranges from trial and appellate representation to petitions for presidential clemency. Prior to joining the Federal Defender's Office, Ms. Cody was a commercial litigator at the law firm Schiff Hardin LLP. She also served as a law clerk to the Honorable Ann Claire Williams of the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals and a law clerk to the Honorable Myron Thompson in the Middle District of Alabama. Ms. Cody received her law degree from Emory University School of Law, and she received her undergraduate degree from Xavier University of Louisiana. Before becoming a lawyer, Ms. Cody was a capital defense investigator at the Georgia Resource Center. She spent 7 years visiting men on death row in Louisiana and Georgia and listening to their stories. Ms. Cody believes the Sixth Amendment demands the highest caliber of representation to those with the least financial means, especially when their freedom or life is at stake.
William Hall – Cook County State’s Attorney; Lesbian and Gay Bar Association of Chicago
William is an Assistant State’s Attorney for Cook County, and has been a LAGBAC Board since 2004. He earned his B. A. in Political Science from the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana, and his J. D. from Georgetown University Law Center. He has been partnered with Kevin Tindell, an activist in the Chicago GLBT community, since 1996. William and Kevin were legally married in front of more than 1 million people on July 4, 2010 on a float during the Toronto Pride Parade. William and Kevin have a busy household. They have 3 sons, Carter, Christian and Camran, 4 puppies, Czar, Sarabi, Moses and Kimba, who they are proud to have adopted from local shelters. William is also a member of Equality Illinois and a member of the National Black Prosecutors Association.