FacultyFaculty/Author Profile

Patricia Brown Holmes (invited)

Schiff Hardin LLP

Chicago, IL, USA


Patricia Brown Holmes is a partner in the Litigation Group of Schiff Hardin LLP and leads the firm's White Collar Crime and Corporate Compliance Client Service Team. She also co-chairs the firm's Diversity Committee. Patricia's diverse practice includes substantial trial experience and representation of high profile individuals and corporations in connection with federal, state and local civil and criminal investigations and trials. She has experience conducting numerous internal investigations and handling matters involving financial and accounting fraud, mail and wire fraud, civil rights violations, contract disputes and other complex commercial litigation.

Patricia joined the firm after serving approximately nine years as an associate judge of the Circuit Court of Cook County. Prior to becoming a trial court judge, she served the City of Chicago as its Chief Assistant Corporation Counsel for Municipal Prosecutions, supervising a staff of attorneys practicing in chancery and municipal courts. Earlier, Patricia honed her skills in federal court having tried over 26 complex felony cases and argued numerous times before the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals as an Assistant United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois. She also gained significant trial and appellate experience as an Assistant State's Attorney for Cook County, Illinois, arguing twice before the Illinois Supreme Court.

Patricia is a member of and has held various leadership positions in numerous professional and service organizations. She was recently appointed by Governor Patrick Quinn to the University of Illinois Board of Trustees. Governor Quinn has also relied on her integrity and experience in appointing her as Chair of the new Illinois Torture Inquiry and Relief Commission charged with investigating and determining factual claims of torture related to allegations of torture that require an individual to waive Constitutional rights and privileges. She recently completed service as Chair of Governor Quinn's Cemetery Oversight Task Force investigating tragic incidents alleged to have occurred at the historic Burr Oak Cemetery in Alsip, Illinois. As Chair of the Cemetery Task Force, she was charged with leading the team who developed legislative recommendations for regulatory reform in the funeral and cemetery industry.

She is a member of Senator Dick Durbin's Judicial Commission led by former Illinois State's Attorney Dick Devine to help select the next federal judges for the Northern District of Illinois having served on the immediate past commission led by former Judge Mikvah. She is Chair of the Illinois Judicial Council Foundation and is a Co-Chair of the Retired Judges Committee of the Illinois Judges Association. She holds memberships in the National Bar Association, American Bar Association, Chicago Bar Association, Cook County Bar Association, Illinois Bar Association, Black Women Lawyers' Association of Greater Chicago, Inc (founder and former President), and is Chairman of the Board of The Just the Beginning Foundation, Inc., a premiere legal pipeline organization. She has been a guest on Paul Lisnek's CN100 television news show "Political Update" and on WVON radio as well as on Fox News Chicago discussing the nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the United States Supreme Court.

Patricia has received numerous awards for her outstanding contributions to the legal community as well as recognition for her contributions to multiple civic endeavors.

Patricia has been an adjunct professor of law at the Northwestern University School of Law and the Loyola Institute for Paralegal Studies. She also was an instructor at the Attorney General's Advocacy Institute of the U.S. Department of Justice.

Patricia received her undergraduate degree from the University of Illinois and her law degree from the University of Illinois College of Law. She is admitted to practice in Illinois, as well as before the U.S. District Courts for the Northern and Central Districts of Illinois, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, and the United States Supreme Court.

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