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Release: Immediate
Media Contact: Tamiko Lee
Phone: 312/988-5237
Email: leet@staff.abanet.org
Online: www.abanews.org


Chicago Lawyer Justin Heather to Receive National Outstanding Young Lawyer Award

CHICAGO, Jan. 27, 2010 – The American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division will honor Justin Heather of Chicago with its National Outstanding Young Lawyer Award. The YLD will present the award during the ABA Midyear Meeting in Orlando, Fla., at the YLD Assembly on Saturday, Feb. 6. The assembly begins at 9 a.m.

The YLD presents this award annually to a young lawyer who exemplifies professional excellence, service to the legal profession and the bar, service to the community, and who has a reputation for the advancement of legal ethics and professional responsibility.

Heather, a litigation associate with the law firm of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, concentrates his practice on complex corporate litigation. He represents clients in a variety of disputes, including international gas and oil matters, intellectual property, securities law, bankruptcy, franchise law, complex commercial contracts, and mergers and acquisitions.

In his eight years of practice, Heather has logged more than 4,000 pro bono hours, more than 10 times the ABA’s recommended 50 hours a year. His pro bono service involves working with such clients as death row inmates, West African citizens suffering political persecution, and other clients in various race and disability discrimination lawsuits.

In addition to his frequent pro bono contributions, Heather actively supports a variety of bar activities. He currently serves as vice chair for the Chicago Bar Association Young Lawyers Section.  He also is a board member for the CBA’s Record publication, the Young Professionals Board of the Chicago Bar Foundation and the Legal Assistance Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago. In addition, Heather serves as a council member of the Illinois State Bar Association Young Lawyers Division.

He has received numerous awards for his contributions to the legal profession, including the 2008 Young Lawyer Award from the ISBA, and the Maurice Weigle Exceptional Young Lawyer Award from the CBA and the CBF.

A graduate of Dartmouth College, Heather earned his Juris Doctor cum laude from Northwestern University School of Law. Heather is admitted to practice in Illinois, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit and the U.S. Supreme Court.

The American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division is the home for young lawyers. With more than 150,000 members and 300 affiliated groups, the ABA YLD is the largest young lawyer organization in the world.

With nearly 400,000 members, the American Bar Association is the largest voluntary professional membership organization in the world.  As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law.

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