Member Spotlight

Nadine Jean Wichern

Illinois Attorney General // Chief, Civil Appeals Division

Please provide a description of your practice.
I am the head of the Civil Appeals Division in the Office of the Attorney General of the State of Illinois. I supervise 25 appellate attorneys who handle all of the civil appeals on behalf of the State of Illinois, its constitutional offices, its agencies, boards, and commissions, and its employees. Most of the Division’s appeals are before the United States Supreme Court, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, the Illinois Supreme Court, and all five Districts of the Illinois Appellate Court. The appeals handled by the Division cover diverse areas of law, including state and federal constitution, administrative review, environmental, tax, labor and employment, and civil rights. The Division files more than 200 briefs and orally argues about 100 cases per year. In addition to supervising others, I handle a limited caseload of my own appeals.

Why are you a member of the WBAI?
I am a member of the WBAI because it provides the opportunity to connect with other attorneys and volunteer for important projects to help the bar and public. When I was in law school, I received a scholarship from the WBAI Foundation, which was very much needed and appreciated. My membership with WBAI is an opportunity to give back.

What do you think is the best way to empower women in law?
The best way to empower women in law is to provide professional and personal support to other female attorneys. Mentorship and sponsorship of other female attorneys is critical. The rules for getting ahead in the profession are often opaque, and so it is important to pass knowledge on to other female attorneys.

What are you most looking forward to in the following year, personally/professionally?

In the coming year, I look forward to making more in person connections with other attorneys and in my personal life. As we move into what may be a new phase of the Covid-19 pandemic, I hope to find ways to deepen my relationships and provide mentorship to younger attorneys.

Tell us something interesting about you.

I grew up in Anaheim, California, about 15 minutes from Disneyland. Growing up, I used to hang out at Disneyland like other kids hung out at the mall. I still love going to Disneyland, and already have a trip planned there for this Fall!

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