Federal Practice Update - Spring CLE Seminar

The Mahoney Chapter co-hosted its annual Spring CLE, Federal Practice Update, with the Winnebago County (Illinois) Bar Association on June 23, 2017. This year, the focus was on bankruptcy law. Attorney Kim Casey, chair of the Federal Section of the WCBA, and Judge Thomas Lynch, U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Western Division, who is a director of the Mahoney Chapter, co-hosted and coordinated the program.

Judge Lynch and fellow presenters, Attorneys Lisa Kpor, Richard Bixter, Brad Koch and James Stephens and Jason Rock, who together discussed “Fraud after Husky: Supreme Court observations of amicus counsel, debtor, creditor and trustee perspectives.” See Husky International Electronics, Inc. v. Ritz, 136 S.Ct. 1581 (2016). Patrick Layng, U.S. Trustee for the Northern District of Illinois, the Eastern and Western Districts of Wisconsin, the Districts of Colorado, Utah and Wyoming; and, Ari Telisman, Senior Litigation Counsel, Illinois Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission discussed ethics in bankruptcy practice. Judge Mary Gorman, the Chief Judge of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of Illinois present the case law update and Judge Lynch, his law clerks and Raymond Matlock, Chief Deputy Bankruptcy Clerk for Western Division, finished out the program with a discussion of practical practice tips in the bankruptcy court.

Since the program was on a Friday and finished precisely at 5:00 p.m., it was followed by a reception at which practitioners and judges were able to continue the discussion of weighty matters in the bar of the conference center.


Presenters at the recent Mahoney Chapter sponsored program included, from l to r, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge, Thomas Lynch; Brad Koch; Lisa Kpor; Rick Bixter; and, Jason Rock.

“Federal Appellate Practice” CLE Seminar

The P. Michael Mahoney (Rockford, IL) Chapter, in conjunction with the Winnebago County Bar Association, provided a continuing legal education program on Federal Appellate Practice. The seminar, on September 28, 2016, included a presentation by Diane Wood, the Chief Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. Other speakers included Counsel to the Executive for the Circuit, Don Wall, and Circuit Mediator, Rocco Spagna. Don discussed the behind the scenes activities that get an appeal docketed and to the judges of the circuit and Rocco talked about the circuit’s mandatory mediation program under F.R.A.P 33. Jim Grogan, Deputy Administrator and Chief Counsel for the Illinois Attorney and Registration and Disciplinary Commission was, as always, entertaining in discussion of ethical issues on appeal. The Chapter’s own Magistrate Judge Iain Johnston shared war stories about his experiences with settlement conferences in the Mediation Office for the Seventh Circuit, revealing that he had a life before the judiciary.

The program was publicized in and attended by members from the Central District Chapter (Illinois), the Chicago Chapter, and the newest chapter in the FBA, the Wisconsin Chapter. Chief Judge for the Northern District of Illinois, Ruben Castillo, the Circuit Executive for the Seventh Circuit, Collins Fitzgerald, Clerk of the District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Tom Bruton, and Bankruptcy Judge Thomas Lynch were in attendance.

2016 Federal Civil Practice Update

On February 19, 2016, the Mahoney Chapter (Rockford, Illinois) sponsored a federal civil practice update in conjunction with the Winnebago and McHenry County Bar Associations. The continuing legal education session was held in the beautiful Stanley J. Roszkowski U.S. Courthouse, in Rockford. Presenters included U.S. Magistrate Judge Iain Johnston, Illinois Appellate Court Justice Jack O’Malley (ret.), Supervisory Trial Attorney for the EEOC Chicago District Office, Diane Smason, District Director for the U.S. Department of Labor, Wage and Hour Division, Tom Gauze, Regional Director of the Chicago Regional office of the NLRB, Peter Sung Ohr, and former television journalist and current member of the Chicago public relations firm, Serafin & Associates, Lissa Druss Christman.

After the seminar, attendees gathered a downtown sports bar & grill and then attended an AHL game between the Blackhawks’ affiliate, the Rockford IceHogs, and the Manitoba Moose. Although the ‘Hogs provided an exciting finish, with three goals scored in the last three minutes of the third period, the hometown favorites could not pull it out.


Bankruptcy Judge Thomas Lynch (far left) and Magistrate Judge Iain Johnston (in red) enjoy some hockey with family and members of the Mahoney Chapter.

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