FacultyFaculty/Author Profile
Michelle Speller-Thurman

Michelle Speller-Thurman

Abbott Laboratories
Division Counsel, Licensing & Acquisitions
Abbott Park, IL, USA


As a Division Counsel with Abbott Laboratories, I am responsible for global mergers, acquisitions, divestitures, private equity investments and licensing transactions. Prior to joining Abbott, I was Corporate Counsel with Hewitt Associates LLC.

As a former associate at Kirkland & Ellis and partner at Winston & Strawn LLP and Jenner & Block LLP, I represented public and private companies in domestic and international transactions, as well as private equity clients in business acquisitions and mergers.  In addition, I advised public and private corporate borrowers, financial institutions, and private equity investors in a variety of corporate lending transactions.  I also have extensive experience with workout and restructuring matters. Prior to attending law school, I was a manager in the financial consulting practice of Arthur Andersen LLP in Chicago.

Volunteer Activities

I am active with the Black Women Lawyers’ Association of Greater Chicago, Inc. (BWLA) and am a Board Member for the 2018-2019 bar year. I am also a board member for the BWLA Scholarship Fund.  I formerly served as a LINK Unlimited sponsor and mentor of high school students, the co-chair of the Career Assistance Committee of the Chicago Bar Association, co-chair for the Minority Law Student Job Fair for the Cook County Bar Association, a member of the Illini Leadership Council of the University of Illinois, a member of the Membership Advisory Committee of the Empowering Women Network, Inc., co-chair of programming for the National Association of Women Lawyers General Counsel Institute, and board member of the Chicago Committee on Minorities in Large Law Firms. 

I have been a panelist for the Practising Law Institute’s annual seminar on Drafting and Negotiating Corporate Agreements since 2009. I have also regularly served as a seminar panelist for the American Bar Association, Chicago Bar Association, BWLA, the Minority Corporate Counsel Association and the National Association of Women Lawyers.  In addition, I serve on the Abbott Legal Diversity and Inclusion Committee and am active with Abbott’s Black Business Network.

Honors and Awards

I received an Abbott President’s Award in 2012 and in 2018 for contributions to the legal division. I was named a Top Executive Leader under 50 by Diversity MBA Magazine in 2018 and was featured as a 2008 and 2009 Illinois Rising Star for corporate law (Illinois Super Lawyer magazine).  I was also listed in the inaugural edition of “Who’s Who in Black Chicago” in 2006.

Education       

I earned a B.S. in finance from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a J.D. from Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law.

Michelle Speller-Thurman is associated with the following items:
Live Seminar  Live Seminar Drafting and Negotiating Corporate Agreements 2019, Thursday, January 31, 2019, Chicago, IL
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