It’s Jennifer Ries-Buntain’s skill and track record as a trial attorney that have made her a star at Hall, Prangle & Schoonveld, but her talents as a leader and culture-builder have proven to be equally valuable. Her genuineness, and focus on empathy, collaboration and citizenship has won over countless clients, juries and members of opposing counsel — and has also won over her colleagues, helping to shape the unique ethos of her firm.
The latter point became clear in 2014, when at age 42, Jen became the first non- name partner to lead Hall, Prangle & Schoonveld as managing partner, a job she held until 2018.
Jen continues to serve as a leader at HPS, where she heads the firm’s associate review committee, and also serves as a mentor to attorneys in search of broad professional advice, as well as those seeking specific guidance in disciplines such as business development. For Jen, that service is a natural response to a collaborative culture that she credits with helping her achieve consistently outstanding results.
She has tried cases across the country, serving as a go-to resource for her clients, many of which are multi-facility healthcare organizations. At the urging of one of her mentors, Jen began to focus on health law during law school. She found that not only did she enjoy the work, but the mission of defending “healthcare heroes” resonated with her. She is a part of HPS’ Catastrophic Trial Team, an elite group of HPS attorneys available to appear pro hac vice in high-exposure medical- malpractice defense cases in jurisdictions throughout the country.
During Jen’s tenure as managing partner, she emphasized an ethic of service and citizenship alongside bottom-line results. That focus on aligning real-world values and personal empathy with professional responsibilities carries over into her practice. For example, Jen is nationally regarded for her expertise in fertility law — a field that first attracted her attention when those close to her sought care in that field.
Jen is a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates, the Society of Trial Lawyers and the Chicago Bar Association and has also been honored as a “Leading Lawyer.” A Detroit-area native, Jen earned her undergraduate degree at the University of Michigan before moving to Chicago to attend DePaul University College of Law. After graduating in 1997, she began her legal career at law firm Lord, Bissell & Brook, before joining a group of attorneys in 2002 who left to form Hall, Prangle & Schoonveld. She made that move as a middle-tenured associate, then ascended quickly to become managing partner a little more than a decade later.
Jen lives in north suburban Evanston along with her husband, two teenage sons and sheepdog. She and her family are avid outdoors fans, collecting stamps from a far-reaching, ever-expanding list of national parks. She is an athlete as well, who loves skiing, hiking and biking.