Thursday, February 16, 2012

CCL evaluations in the race for the O'Brien vacancy on the Appellate Court

The Chicago Council of Lawyers has released its evaluations of candidates running for the O'Brien vacancy on the Illinois Appellate Court. Candidates are listed in ballot order. All of the following are candidates in the Democratic primary; no Republican filed for this (or any other) Appellate Court vacancy.

Jesse G. Reyes -- Qualified
Judge Jesse G. Reyes was elected as an Associate Judge in 1997. He currently sits in the Chancery Division hearing mortgage foreclosure matters. From 1995-1997, Judge Reyes worked as an Assistant Attorney at the Chicago Board of Education specializing in Civil Litigation, and from 1985 to 1995 he served as a Senior Supervising Attorney specializing in civil litigation at the City of Chicago Law Department, Torts Division. He was in private practice from 1984 to 1985. Judge Reyes has taught at the John Marshall Law School as a lecturer. He has written a Chapter on Illinois Mortgage Foreclosure Law and articles in the Women’s Bar Association of Illinois Newsletter. Judge Reyes is exceptionally active in community service. Judge Reyes is considered to have good legal ability and temperament. He is praised for his courtroom management skills. He is always well-prepared and his rulings are often described as clear and well-reasoned. The Council finds him Qualified for the Appellate Court.
Rodolfo (Rudy) Garcia -- Well Qualified
Judge Rodolfo Garcia was appointed to the Illinois Appellate Court in 2003. He was elected to the Circuit Court in 1996. From 1983 to 1996, Judge Garcia worked as a sole practitioner with concentrations in criminal defense and immigration. From 1981 to 1983, he worked as an Assistant Illinois Attorney General in the Criminal Appeals Division. In March 2011, he was appointed to fill the elected spot of retiring Appellate Court Judge Michael J. Gallagher. He is presiding Judge of the Sixth Division. In 2007, Judge Garcia was appointed by the Illinois Supreme Court to the Committee on Jury Instructions (Civil) where he continues to sit. In 2005, he was appointed by the Illinois Supreme Court to the Criminal Law Edit, Align, and Reform Commission.

Judge Garcia is praised for being well-prepared for oral argument and for issuing well-reasoned, well-written opinions. He is considered to have very good legal ability and temperament. The Council finds him Well Qualified for the Appellate Court.
William Stewart Boyd -- Well Qualified
Judge William Boyd became an Associate Judge in 1998. He was in private practice from 1983 to 1998 doing family law, probate, and general litigation. Judge Boyd taught as an Adjunct Professor of Law at Chicago-Kent College of Law from 2003 to 2007, and was also a Guest Lecturer at the University of Chicago Law school from 2006 to 2010. He was the recipient of the Lincoln Award presented by the West Suburban Bar Association on April 30, 2010, the recipient of the Samuel Berger Award presented by the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers Illinois Chapter on April 17, 2010, recipient of the Charles Freeman Award presented by the Illinois Judicial Council on September 26, 2006, and recipient of a Service Award from the Union Baptist Church on November 21, 2000.

Judge Boyd receives uniformly high praise for his legal knowledge and ability. He is considered to have an excellent temperament and is praised for his ability to manage a high volume courtroom where he presides over often complex matters. He is reportedly exceptionally hard-working. Although Judge Boyd has not published legal articles, he has served as adjunct faculty/guest lecturer at area law schools. He is praised for the quality of his written opinions. The Council finds him Well Qualified for the Appellate Court.
Ellen L. Flannigan -- Not Qualified
Judge Ellen L. Flannigan was admitted to practice in 1988. She was appointed to the bench by the Illinois Supreme Court in 2006, where she presides over cases in Traffic Court. Before being appointed to the bench, she was in private practice including serving as a partner with Mora Baugh Waitzman & Unger between 1993 and 2006 doing commercial litigation and securities law. Judge Flannigan is considered by many to be doing a good job in Traffic Court. Most respondents praise her legal ability and say that she is knowledgeable about traffic law matters. All report that she has a good temperament. Judge Flannigan provides no written opinions as a judge and her recent published works are limited to co-authoring a Circuit Court Protocol for Driving on a Suspended License cases and security law updates for clients when she was in private practice. The Council is concerned that she does not yet have the breadth or depth of experience, nor has she demonstrated her analytical writing ability. The Council finds her Not Qualified for the Appellate Court.
Don R. Sampen -- Well Qualified
Don R. Sampen was admitted to practice in 1975. He is a partner in the law firm of Clausen Miller. He has been an associate and partner with other law firms throughout his career. He is currently an adjunct professor at Loyola University School of Law and has served in the past as an adjunct professor at a variety of law schools in the Chicago area. He is a columnist for the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin and has authored several published works on antitrust law, Quo Warranto and Mandamus, and on insurance law. He has substantial experience in complex litigation and appellate court matters. Mr. Sampen is well respected as a trial litigator, an appellate practitioner, and as an author. He is considered to have very good legal ability and an excellent temperament. The Council finds him Well Qualified for the Appellate Court.
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