Join Chicago Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights to celebrate fifty years advancing racial equity and economic opportunity for all.

50th Anniversary Gala
Thursday, October 24
5:30 PM to 9:00 PM
Marriott Marquis Chicago

Honoring Judge David Tatel, U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit

Featured speaker: Nikole Hannah-Jones, award-winning investigative journalist

Gala Co-Chairs: Nate Eimer, Barry Fields, and Sonny Garg

Honoring Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, and our founding law firms: Kirkland & Ellis, Sidley Austin,
Mayer Brown, and Schiff Hardin.

Emcee: Laura Washington

Host Committee (in formation):

Legacy Circle

Linton Childs Nate Eimer and Lisa Meyer Barry Fields Michelle and Ryan Kilkenney

Platinum Circle

Eddie Feldman Sonny Garg Marc Lauerman and Donna Vobornik Lauren Loew and Taylor Hammond

Gold Circle

Bonnie Allen and Becky Williams José Behar Shlomo Crandus and Oi Eng-Crandus Sonya Gilbert and Paul Greenwalt

Mary Kay and Ralph Martire Don and Liz Thompson Matt Piers and Maria Torres

Silver Circle

Eric Adelstein David Bartolacci and Brenna DeVaney Karyn Bass-Ehler Myles Berman Ravi Bhatt and Ami Gandhi Asif Bhatti Christine Binotti Jack Block and Missy Fleming

Ben Blustein Aneel Chablani and Kate Mitchell Jeff Colman and Nancy Loeb Adam Diederich and Colleen Harvey Eric Garton and Karen Salmon

Caronina Grimble Cornelia Grumman and Jim Warren Cara Hendrickson Robert Libman Nancy Maldonado Alex and Erica Marks

Pat and Ron Miller Kyle Peterson and Max Stein Jasmine and Quinn Rallins Jay Readey Trude Roselle Keenan Saulter

Roxanne Saylor and Coco Soodek Mark Simon Andrew Stulce and Casey Ward

Click on the button above to view host committee and sponsorship levels, or click here for our Corporate Leadership Council.


Five Decades in Civil Rights Leadership

 
 

Our History

Chicago Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights was established in 1969 following President Kennedy’s call for lawyers across the nation to become involved in the Civil Rights Movement.

For 50 years, we have delivered on the promise to be the legal flank of Chicago’s civil rights movement. Our work has placed us at the forefront of landmark legal decisions, pursuing high-impact litigation and policy advocacy to ensure that Chicago is a just city for all.

Highlights of civil rights wins:

1969

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  • Chicago Lawyers’ Committee convinced the U.S. Attorney General to investigate the deaths of Black Panther leaders Mark Clark and Fred Hampton, who were killed during a police raid.

    The investigation led to the indictment of the State’s Attorney and others.

1970

  • Using data collected by two major universities, attorneys filed a federal class action challenging city-wide disparities in the per-pupil instructional expenditures made in Chicago’s Black and White schools. After the case was filed, the Board of Education equalized expenditures.

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1974

  • Chicago Lawyers’ Committee represented a class of over 1,200 Black South Side homeowners who purchased new homes at inflated prices under land installment contracts, alleging that the developers discriminated against them by exploiting the racially divided housing market.

1982

  • After nine years, attorneys successfully settled the N.O.W. v. City of Chicago equal pay case, benefiting hundreds of women janitors and clerks through salary upgrades, retroactive pension benefits, and $4.5 million in back-pay.

1984

  • Voters of color won an important victory in Ketchum v. Chicago City Council when the 7th Circuit held that an aldermanic redistricting plan had been designed to dilute minority voting strength.

1992

  • Attorneys’ successful lawsuit claiming discrimination by race, national origin, and sex in the Chicago Police Department led to hundreds of officers receiving overdue back-pay and seniority rights.

1995

  • Chicago Lawyers’ Committee secured a significant settlement in Ramos v. Kraft, a vicious 10-year campaign of harassment and hate crime garnering international media attention and bringing much-needed attention to the breadth of hate crime in America.

1999

  • Chicago Lawyers’ Committee filed suit against the United States, US Customs, and a number of Customs inspectors on behalf of 1,300 Black women who disembarked at O’Hare International Airport and were subject to an invasive search for drugs, including strip-searches and x-rays, that violated their constitutional rights.

2003

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  • In the landmark Wallace et al. v. Chicago Housing Authority case, the courts ruled that HUD and public housing authorities must avoid housing discrimination and actively promote equal housing opportunity.

  • Chicago Lawyers’ Committee represented minority and women contractors before the courts which found that discrimination by the City of Chicago impeded equal access to construction opportunities, leading to an overhaul of Minority and Women Business Enterprise programs.

2005

  • Attorneys won a $1.3 million award in hate crime cases on behalf of three Black men for suffering racially motivated attacks by four White men that included threats of hanging and beating.

2010

  • Litigation by Chicago Lawyers’ Committee led to the US Supreme Court ruling unanimously in Lewis v. City of Chicago that the City’s policy for hiring firefighters discriminated against Black applicants, blocking thousands from employment. This led to new policies, new hires, and tens of millions of dollars in back pensions and damages.

2013-2014

  • Advocacy by the voting rights initiative of Chicago Lawyers’ Committee led to passage of legislation allowing same-day voter registration and online voter registration in Illinois.

2017

  • Attorneys filed suit on behalf of community organizations on the south, southwest, and west sides against then-Cook County Assessor Joseph Berrios. The suit exposed a property tax system that systematically imposed higher rates on low-income Black and Latinx neighborhoods than wealthy White neighborhoods for decades.

2018

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  • Chicago Lawyers’ Committee joined with parents in successfully preventing the closing of National Teachers Academy (NTA), a top-tier school serving majority low-income Black students. This was the first time that a court has ever enjoined a CPS school closure based on a racial discrimination claim.

2019

  • Attorneys filed suit on behalf of community organizations challenging the City of Chicago’s unlawful and racially discriminatory plan to divert up to $1.3 billion in public money via Tax Increment Financing (TIF) to subsidize a luxury development in Lincoln Yards.