Distinguished Service Award
Given to an individual who has made a significant financial or volunteer contribution to the law school.
Roy C. Palmer '62
Roy C. Palmer ‘62, a retired lawyer and real estate developer, is one of Chicago-Kent’s most generous alumni and volunteers. Roy has made many generous contributions that have helped raise the profile of IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law on a national level.
A member of the Chicago-Kent Board of Overseers, Roy, along with his wife, Susan, established the Roy C. Palmer Civil Liberties Prize at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law
in 2007 to honor a work of scholarship exploring the tension between civil liberties and national security in contemporary American society. The $10,000 annual prize is designed to encourage and reward public debate among scholars on current issues affecting the rights of individuals and the responsibilities of governments throughout the world.
In 1990, Roy retired from his law practice of 25 years and went on to head a variety of real estate development ventures. Active in both the corporate and non-profit worlds, Roy has served as director of Harris Bank/Bank of Montreal in Sarasota, and he and his wife are also generous supporters of the Ringling School of Art and Design in Florida.
Roy and Susan are the recipients of the 1997 Outstanding Individual Philanthropist Award of the National Society of Fundraising Executives. The Palmers reside in Sarasota, Florida. Roy’s daughter Allyson Palmer is a 1991 graduate of Chicago-Kent.
Professional Achievement Award
Given to an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to one or more of the following fields: 1) the practice of law, 2) the judiciary, 3) public service/government, 4) business/commerce, or 5) the media.
Kathleen M. McDonough '94
Segal McCambridge Singer & Mahoney
Kathleen M. McDonough ’94 is managing shareholder of Segal McCambridge Singer & Mahoney, Ltd.
, a litigation firm with more than 150 attorneys and offices in seven cities. An active trial attorney, Kathleen concentrates her practice in general liability matters including products liability, commercial litigation, class action, employment, premises, and transportation as well as toxic torts. She has tried numerous seven-figure cases to verdict in Illinois and was recently admitted to the bar of the United States Supreme Court.
An active community volunteer, Kathleen has served as a tutor in Cabrini Green and Christopher House volunteer programs, and was a mentor to high school students in the Chicago Richards Career Academy High School’s e-mentor program. As a volunteer attorney for the Chicago Volunteer Legal Services, she has represented disabled children in the reinstatement of Social Security benefits. She currently mentors Chicago-Kent students through the school’s Society of Women in Law Mentorship Program and is on the board of the Friends of St. Columbanus Food Pantry, which provides food and supplies to low-income households on Chicago’s south side.
At Segal McCambridge, she established and chaired the firm’s first summer associate program as well as its diversity and associate committees. Chicago Lawyer Magazine
profiled Kathleen in the 2012 edition of Women in Law
as one of fifteen women attorneys in Chicago who have made, and continue to make, a unique impact on the legal profession.
She and her husband, John Mundo, also an attorney, reside in the Bucktown neighborhood of Chicago with their three children.
John J. Pikarski, Jr. '69
Gordon & Pikarski
John J. Pikarski, Jr. ‘69 is founding co-partner and principal at Gordon & Pikarski
where he practices in zoning, real estate taxation, condemnation and related real estate matters. In his forty years of practice, he has made thousands of appearances before local municipal boards and city councils across Illinois, resulting in billions of dollars in real estate development throughout the state.
A former member of the Chicago-Kent Alumni Board of Directors
, John is a frequent volunteer both for the law school and the Chicago community at large. John is a former chairman of Polish American Association, former treasurer of the National Advocates Society of Polish-American attorneys, former vice chairman of the Chicago-Warsaw Sister Cities Committee and current member of the Chicago-Amman Sister Cities Committee, and member of the board of directors for the Polish American Chamber of Commerce.
In 1995, President William J. Clinton appointed John to serve on the United States Commission for the Preservation of America’s Heritage Abroad, and in 1998, he was named to the board of directors of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), also by President Clinton. He has participated in numerous presidential delegations abroad, and received the Cavaliers Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland in 1999 in honor of his tireless efforts toward Poland’s entry into the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).
Locally, John is a former member of the Chicago Plan Commission and former Chairman of the Cook County Board of Ethics, where he supervised the creation and implementation of the Cook County Code of Ethics.
A lifelong resident of Chicago, John and his wife Sandra Sliwinski have four children, including Tom Pikarski ’97, and nine grandchildren. He is joined in his law practice by a daughter, two sons and son-in-law.
Young Alumni Award
Given to an alumnus or alumna who has graduated within the past ten years and has made an outstanding contribution to one or more of the following fields: 1) the practice of law, 2) the judiciary, 3) public service/government, 4) business/commerce, or 5) the media or who has made a significant financial or volunteer contribution to the law school.
Matthew T. Jenkins ’07
Corboy & Demetrio
Matthew T. Jenkins ‘07 has been a personal injury lawyer with Corboy & Demetrio
since 2008, where he handles cases arising from automobile collisions, construction negligence, premises liability and product liability.
While a student at Chicago-Kent, Matt was recognized for his personal dedication to public service and was named a Public Interest Law Initiative Scholar. A founding member of Chicago-Kent’s Young Alumni Council
and current member of the Council’s executive board, Matt frequently serves as a volunteer and guest speaker at the law school. In 2010, Matt was honored as Illinois Pro Bono
Attorney of the Month by Illinois Legal Aid Online (ILAO) for his volunteer legal work.
Matt currently serves as president of the board of directors for the Center for Disability & Elder Law. He is also an active member of the American Bar Association, the American Association for Justice, the Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, and the Illinois State Bar Association, where he is a member of the Judicial Evaluation Committee.
Matt also sits on the executive committee of the Chicago Bar Association's Young Lawyer Section, where he received the Rising Star Award in 2012.
Prior to re-joining Corboy & Demetrio, where he had clerked as a law student, Matt practiced plaintiffs’ civil rights law at Loevy & Loevy in Chicago, where he assisted in obtaining a $4 million verdict on his very first trial.
Matt resides in Chicago with his wife, Dr. Cristen Jenkins, and their two-year-old son. They are expecting another child in December.
Kathryn M. Woodward ’02
Kathryn M. Woodward ’02 currently serves as senior counsel for Hillshire Brands
(formerly Sara Lee), where she works in risk assessment and compliance, generates employee training, and serves on the company’s corporate social responsibility team.
A member of the Compliance Advisory Board at Chicago-Kent, Kate is a frequent speaker on compliance-related topics and will moderate a CLE program in early 2013 at Chicago-Kent. While at Chicago-Kent, Kate worked in the employment clinic under Professor Richard Gonzalez, which sparked her early legal career interests in employment law.
She is currently the president of the associate board of CARPLS (Coordinated Advice and Referral Program for Legal Services), serves on the steering committee of the North Shore Compliance Officer Roundtable, and is active with the Illinois State Bar Association, the American Bar Association, the Justinian Society of Lawyers, and Catholic Charities of Chicago.
Previously, Kate worked as an associate at Greene and Letts practicing employment law, and joined Sara Lee as employment counsel before moving up to director of compliance, where she was responsible for the global ethics and compliance program.
Kate lives in Lake Barrington and is married to fellow attorney, Marco Nasca. They have a two year old son, Matthew, and are expecting their second child in the spring.
Institutional Partner Award
Given to a law firm or corporation that has had a significant impact on the law school and/or on the lives of alumni and students by assisting in the advancement, growth and/or development of Chicago-Kent, especially as their involvement directly impacts students and alumni.
These firms or corporations have demonstrated a commitment to Chicago-Kent by: 1) funding internships/part-time jobs for students; 2) recruiting graduates for career opportunities; 3) funding scholarships or fellowships; 4) supporting annual student and alumni activities; 5) arranging for in-kind donations, and/or; 6) fostering mentoring programs between employees and students.
Seyfarth Shaw LLP
has a longstanding history with IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law. More than 30 of Seyfarth’s current attorneys are Chicago-Kent alumni, and many of the law firm’s attorneys regularly support Chicago-Kent in numerous ways, including as adjunct faculty, managing externship programs, serving on various Chicago-Kent committees, authoring articles for Chicago-Kent programs, presenting at seminars and providing significant financial support to the law school.
In 2009, Seyfarth created the Sandra P. Zemm Labor Law Prize, awarded annually to a third-year Chicago-Kent student in the Labor and Employment Law Certificate Program to honor the memory of Seyfarth partner Sandra P. Zemm.
Chicago-Kent alumni at Seyfarth supervise two intellectual property externships each year, in addition to hosting labor and employment externs and summer fellows. Seyfarth is also a member of Chicago-Kent's Institute for Law and the Workplace, and has sponsored the Supreme Court Intellectual Property Review (SCIPR) Conferences in 2011 and 2012.