John P. Schreiner
Perkins Coie LLP
Corporate law
40 Under Class – 2019

For many, the lottery conjurs up thoughts of random drawings, dreams of jackpots and everything a player could do with their winnings. The contract to privatize the Illinois Lottery would be none of these. Instead, it was a challenging victory. Only three states – Illinois, Indiana and New Jersey – operate under a private management model.

John Schreiner, a corporate law partner at Perkins Coie in Chicago advises Camelot Illinois on key commercial transactions, including contract negotiations. He was also a member of the legal team that helped Camelot secure a 10-year contract with the state of Illinois to serve as the private manager of the Illinois Lottery.

That Schreiner was able to negotiate this speaks volumes about his talent, Keith Horton, vice president of compliance and general counsel for Camelot Illinois, said. “John understands how to creatively achieve commercial results in highly regulated environments. His expertise is both unique and industry-leading.” Horton said.

Schreiner’s work with Camelot Illinois is impressive. But it’s far from his only success. He also recently represented Sethness Products Co., a company that produces caramel color for the food and beverage industries, in its acquisition by Roquette Freres S.A., a company based in France. This cross-border sale involved the buyout of two joint ventures, one in China and another in France, and the sale of the company’s U.S. and Indian operations. Schreiner had to navigate foreign jurisdiction requirements across France, China and India. He also had to manage the issues and challenges presented by the various constituencies of the 135-year-old family business.

Schreiner has also spent several months in the African countries of Djibouti and South Sudan working with his client, Recon International Africa, on projects involving port security, national road infrastructure, sanitation and water purification facilities, housing development and the construction of hospitals.

While in South Sudan, Schreiner worked within the limitations created by the ongoing civil war and the lack of an established judicial system to find ways to attempt to advance the country’s infrastructure though public/private partnerships. In both South Sudan and Djibouti, Schreiner dealt primarily with cabinet-level secretaries, the Djiboutian prime minister and the offices of the president and vice president of both countries.

Schreiner’s fellow attorneys say this young lawyer has earned his success. No one, they say, outworks him.

“John sets himself apart from his peers by investing the time necessary to truly understand the business needs of his clients,” said Chris Yarbrough, general counsel and chief compliance officer with Chicago’s Kabouter Management. “He travels extensively to places ranging from Escanaba, Mich., to Dubai to personally meet with his clients. He devotes considerable amounts of time to staying abreast of developments in the industries in which his clients operate.”

Throughout his career, Schreiner has made a commitment to his community, volunteering as a guardian ad litem in dozens of minor child guardianship matters before the Cook County probate court during the past decade. He has also organized and led fundraising efforts for a variety of non-profit organizations. One of his most interesting endeavors? He volunteered with the College of Natural Resources at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point to help a team of faculty and student researchers capture and radio-collar black bears in northern Wisconsin as part of a study with the state of Wisconsin’s Department of Natural Resources.