August 24, 2023

Law360 has profiled Willkie Chicago as a 2023 “Regional Powerhouse” in Illinois, highlighting its record of success in high-stakes cases, its commitment to diversity and pro bono representation, and focus on civic engagement.

The publication noted how Willkie Chicago’s broad litigation strengths, trial-ready reputation and boardroom acumen have helped it grow steadily in recent years and achieve powerhouse status.

“A ‘crisp’ focus on corporate needs has made Willkie's Chicago office a top choice to handle companies' ‘most important strategic, reputational and economic matters,’” Law360 reported, quoting Willkie’s Midwest chairman Craig C. Martin.

Law360 noted how Martin and five other founding partners launched Willkie’s Chicago office in 2020 and have grown it to an 80-lawyer team, including through the addition of several prominent lateral hires. The team’s capabilities include major investigations and board governance counseling, a leading Private Clients Group and an extensive litigation practice, including patent litigation, that excels at trial representations.

“Willkie Chicago is a true trial lawyers’ firm,” Debra Bogo-Ernst, Chair of Willkie’s Class Action Litigation Practice, told Law360. “[I]t's great to be at a firm where opposing counsel knows we're not only willing to try a case, but we're also really good at it.”

The publication also noted Barbara Grayson’s role as Midwest Chair of Willkie’s Private Clients Group, a destination practice for high-net-worth individuals and families, and the recent accomplishments of Sara Tonnies Horton, Co-Chair of the IP Litigation Practice Group.

Law360 also highlighted the diversity of the office – half of its founding partners are women – and its commitment to pro bono service and civic engagement.

"We're actively looking for ways for [lawyers] to get involved in the community to help them figure out where they might use their talents," Horton told Law360.

The profile discussed the strength of Willkie’s platform in Chicago beyond litigation, including its finance and restructuring capabilities, and its ongoing growth.

"Our goal is to continue to build out and become a full-service Chicago office,” Matt D. Basil, a founding litigation partner in the office, told Law360. “And we're doing it very thoughtfully, deliberately and strategically.”

Read the Law360 2023 “Regional Powerhouse” profile here.