Iris Y. Martinez, center with corsage, poses with her staff Thursday after delivering the annual State of the Clerk’s Office Address. – Photo by Emma Oxnevad/Chicago Daily Law Bulletin

Clerk of Cook Circuit Court announces staff changes in yearly address

Clerk of the Circuit Court of Cook County Iris Y. Martinez announced high-level staff changes and plans for a new call center in her annual State of the Clerk’s Office Address.

‘Blessed’ Judge Lee sets milestone on 7th Circuit

Even before he went to law school, Judge John Z. Lee of the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals displayed the qualities that later made him successful in his career and life, a longtime friend said.

Welch, poised to continue as speaker, reflects on growing Illinois House majority

Illinois House Speaker Emanuel “Chris” Welch, who recently announced he has the support for another term as House speaker, says he looks forward to governing with an even larger supermajority than he had during his first two years.

How I Did It

Chicago attorney Brian Wallach uses legal, political skills to fight for ALS patients

After being diagnosed with ALS in 2017, Brian S. Wallach resolved to use his experience in the courtroom and presidential politics to advocate for life-saving treatment answers for others suffering from the progressive neurological disease.

Justice Joy Cunningham sworn in to Illinois Supreme Court

Friends and colleagues who spoke at Justice Joy V. Cunningham’s investiture Thursday called it a “joyful” occasion as the newest Supreme Court justice embodies the meaning of her name.

Family of 17-year-old killed by Chicago police gets $5M settlement

The family of a 17-year-old boy who was shot to death by a Chicago police officer in 2019 accepted a $5 million settlement.

Justices keep student loan cancellation blocked for now

The Supreme Court on Thursday said the Biden administration program to cancel student loans will remain blocked for now, but the justices agreed to take up the case in late winter.

State rule on remote court appearances amended

Chief Justice Mary Jane Theis and the Illinois Supreme Court announced amendments to Rule 45, which provide guidelines for future remote appearances in circuit court proceedings, according to a news release.

Courts & Cases

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Trial Notebook


Insurer attempts to duck duty to defend over asbestos

CNA Insurance Co. had a clever justification for declining to defend a policyholder that was sued in hundreds of asbestos cases. But it had to persuade the Illinois Appellate Court to extend the line of cases that permit judges — in “certain circumstances” — “to look beyond the allegations of the underlying complaint to determine if the duty to defend has been triggered.”

Racial Justice

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The assassination of Fred Hampton: Police, FBI targeted a revolutionary

Sunday marks the 53th anniversary of the assassination of Illinois Black Panther Chairman Fred Hampton, killed at 21 when police executed a search warrant and shot him in his own bed. The 22-year-old Black Panther leader Mark Clark was also killed during the raid.

Sports Marketing Playbook

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Pickleball reaches the big leagues with sports stars, brands investing

What’s currently being called the fastest-growing sport in the United States? (Hint: It’s not e-sports.) As of 2022, that honor goes to pickleball.

For the Defense

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Thanksgiving week arguments at state Supreme Court: Turkeys or valid claims?

For the first time since 2018, the Illinois Supreme Court heard oral argument on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving. The four disparate civil cases heard that day have a through line that may result in some of the parties giving thanks and will potentially clarify an important issue for civil litigators in Illinois. That commonality is that each of the cases involves a contention that one side forfeited its chief argument.

Opening Statement


Stoppard’s ‘Leopoldstadt’ is a loving tribute to the Jewish family he never knew

Upon my return from a weekend in New York City, I reviewed three Big Apple musicals in last week’s column. But there’s one more that I want to share. With the subject being the Holocaust, its mood is somber but the play is thoughtful and provocative.

Opening Statement


Porchlight’s ‘Rent’ should not be missed

I have just returned from a weekend trip to New York City, where I attended the American Theatre Critics Association (ATCA) Conference. While in the Big Apple, my wife and I also attended one play and three musicals. But more on that later.

Opening Statement


Chicago Shakespeare puts a different spin on ‘Measure for Measure’

Since the play was first performed, William Shakespeare’s “Measure for Measure” has often been referred to as one of the Bard of Avon’s “problem plays.”

Opening Statement


‘Swing State’ could have been a great political drama

Prolific playwright Rebecca Gilman’s latest work, “Swing State,” has come to Chicago. Under the direction of Robert Falls, the show is playing through Nov. 13 at the Goodman Theatre.

Opening Statement


‘The Malignant Ampersands’ is a treat for Halloween

There’s an old joke about a sailor stationed in the south Pacific who sees a beautiful and rare fish. It costs thousands of dollars but only measures a few inches. He buys it and ships it to his elderly mother so that she can admire it.

Social Scene


Hellenic Bar group gives awards

The Hellenic Bar Association Foundation awarded $60,000 in scholarships to seven law students at its 72nd Scholarship Gala and celebrated Dr. Leonidas Platanias (Hellene of the Year), Judge Anthony Kyriakopoulos (Service Award) and Maria Tabrizi (Professional Achievement), alongside Harry Secaras as Lawyer of the Year. From left are Hon. Tom Sianis, Hon. Pamela Stratigakis, Hon. Peggy Chiampas, Hon. Frank J. Andreou, HBAF president Eleni Katsoulis, Justice Jesse G. Reyes, Hon. Anthony C. Kyriakopoulos, Hon. Stephanie Saltouros, Hon. Anna Demacopoulos, Hon. Diann K. Marsalek, Hon. George Canellis, Hon. Lorraine Murphy and Hon. Jeffery G. Chrones. Photo by Lex Alexander Photography
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AABAR hosts installation ceremony

The board of directors, officers and incoming President Nura Yanaki of the Arab American Bar Association of Illinois (AABAR) celebrated its 32nd Installation Dinner & Award Ceremony Nov. 2 with Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi, Honoree Justice Jesse G. Reyes and Chief Judge Timothy Evans. From left, standing: John Breen, Cory Cassis, Hon. Samuel Betar, Donna Haddad, Sandra Frantzen, Sana'a Hussien, Hon. Rouhy Shalabi, Jawad Shalabi, Tony Abou Ezzi, Joseph Homsy, Khaled Elkhatib. From left, seated: Hon. William Haddad (ret.), Hon. Jesse G. Reyes, President Nura Yanaki, Mona Naser and Marvet Sweis Drnovsek. Photo courtesy of Rush Productions

Students get a glimpse of firm life

Attorneys from Clausen Miller gave future lawyers a glimpse into law firm life as part of a “Day in the Life” program for students with diverse backgrounds, organized by the firm’s Diversity, Inclusion and New Talent Committee. Students heard presentations on topics ranging from business and operational considerations for law firms to the intersection of technology and the law. Photo by Andrew Collings Photography
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Interpreter honored for pro bono work

The National Immigrant Justice Center's Associate Leadership Board hosted an award reception sponsored by Perkins Coie LLP. Shown are NIJC Associate Leadership Board co-chairs Anna Mikulski of Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP, from left, and Caroline Gizem Tunca of Perkins Coie LLP with award recipient Bill Depenbrock of the Law Office of Mike Duffy. Depenbrock, an interpreter, was recognized as a non-attorney professional who has provided exceptional service on a pro bono matter. Photo by Folio Films

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