You are on page 1of 3


Name (State full name and any former names used): ​Joel Louis Chupack

2. Age: ​61

3. Education (List schools, years attended, and degrees received): ​IIT/Chicago-Kent College of Law (J.D.,
1982); University of Illinois, Urbana (B.A. Political Science, 1978)

4. Current occupation and employer: ​Attorney, Partner, Heinrich & Kramer, P.C.

5. Current hometown, and neighborhood if Chicago. If subcircuit candidate: How long have you lived there?
Northbrook, 17 years

6. Work history (List with years): ​Heinrich & Kramer, P.C. (1992-2018); solo practice (1991-92); Malk,
Harris & Miller (1990-91); McBride, Baker & Coles (later merged with Holland &
Knight)(1986-1990); solo practice (1984-86); Law Office of Frederick S. Stein (1982-1983).

7. In what areas of law do you have experience? ​Over my career ​I have practiced in every division of the
Circuit Court of Cook County. However, my current practice focuses on all types of real estate
litigation, condominium disputes and general commercial litigation. In addition, I am an
Arbitrator with the American Arbitration Association and have handled over 200 arbitrations with
amounts in controversy from less than $10,000 to $20,000,000.

8. List your bar association memberships.

Chicago Bar Association. Current Vice-Chair of the Real Property Law Committee and have
served as its legislative liaison for several years; current member of Condominium Law
Subcommittee, Civil Practice Committee, and Solo and Small Practice Committee; among other
involvement over the years.

Illinois State Bar Association. Former Chair of Real Estate Law Section Council (and current
associate editor of its Newsletter); Secretary of the UPL Task Force; current member of the
Assembly; contributing editor to its Disaster Legal Services Manual; panelist in several ISBA cable
TV programs; engaged in drafting legislation to amend the Condominium Property Act to provide
unit owners with more rights; and has authored several articles appearing in the Real Estate Law
Section Council Newsletter; and among other involvement over the years.

The Decalogue Society of Lawyers. Former President. During my tenure, I established the
Committee Against Anti-Semitism, due to the unexpected and alarming rise in hate crimes. The
Committee has educated lawyers on hate crimes and has made inroads on Chicago-area college
campuses. Current Vice-President of The Decalogue Foundation (a §501(c)(6) entity).

The Illinois Real Estate Lawyers Association. Current Board Member.

I am a past member of other bar associations and actively participate in bar programs and events.

9. List all professional, business, fraternal, scholarly, civic, charitable, or other organizations to which you
In addition to those listed in #10, I am involved with many “grass-roots” organizations including
Indivisible and We the People.
10. Describe your civic involvement.
• Prior Board member, EHNT Jewish Congregation, Skokie, Illinois; have chaired its Social
Action and Adult Education Committees.
• Resource for New Covenant Community Development Corporation (North Lawndale
organization) where I provide legal assistance to its leadership and members.
• Active participant in pro bono program operated by CVLS.
• Participant in CBA’s Lawyers Call to Action (2017-18).
• Was a “tester” with the Leadership Council for Metropolitan Open Communities (no longer
in existence) to explore and expose discriminatory practices by landlords and real estate brokers.

11. Describe your current and former political involvement. ​This is my first foray into “politics”. My
current political involvement includes volunteering in the townships comprising the 12​th Judicial
Subcircuit and participating in their programs and events.

12. Have you run for judge before? When and for which seat? ​No, but was on “short list” for appointment
in 2016

13. List your published writings, with dates and with links if available.
• Do Good Fences Make Good Neighbors? (invalidating restrictive covenants), ISBA Real
Property Newsletter, February, 2017
• Best Practices in Representing Buyers of Distressed Real Estate, The Decalogue Tablets
(Spring, 2015)
• Cavaet Lessor (navigating the new state law and Chicago ordinance protecting tenants of
foreclosed property), ISBA Real Property Newsletter, March, 2014
• Disaster Legal Services Manual, published by The Illinois State Bar Association (May 13,
2011, updated April 21, 2014)(Housing and Consumer Protection Chapters)
• Distressed Condominium Property Legislation (discussing the new state law permitting the
court to deconvert a condominium project), ISBA Real Property Newsletter, October, 2009

14. Why do you want to be a Cook County judge?

Winning a case is exhilarating, but there is no greater long-term satisfaction than resolving issues
and bringing finality to disputes. What a litigant most desires is the opportunity to be heard and to
feel that his or her position is understood. A losing party and their attorney will more readily
accept the decision if this is done. This, in turn, will build confidence in the judicial system.

15. What are the most pressing issues facing the justice system and why?
With respect to the criminal justice system, a major pressing issue is the financial bail system. In
the vast majority of cases, whether a defendant is or is not able to post bail, should not be the basis
of his or her release from jail pending trial. This is generally unfair, but it specifically results in
discrimination due to its disproportionate effect on African-Americans and other minority groups.
I applaud the recent efforts to move away from financial bail for less serious crimes. Another
pressing issue in the criminal justice system are defendants with a psychiatric condition that are
being jailed because there are not adequate resources for them to get the help that they need.
With respect to the civil justice system, the high cost of litigation deprives those who cannot afford
it with adequate legal recourse. This has resulted in more ​pro se litigants, which presents its own
set of problems.

16. How will your experiences help you serve as a good judge?
I want to put my years of experience to work for the bench, bar and citizens. Having gone from a
small firm to a solo practitioner to a middle-sized firm and then back to a small firm, I have
experienced and appreciate the challenges in each of these arrangements. Having practiced against
full-time litigators to the occasional litigator to the pro se litigant, I have learned patience and
flexibility. I will bring these qualities with me to the bench.

17. What do you wish voters knew about you?

I love being part of the legal profession. Every day I am grateful for the opportunity to help people,
assist in resolving disputes and support our legal system. I attribute this attitude to my parents.
Neither of them attended college, but valued education. Both of them faced discrimination, but
instilled in their children the values of fairness and respect.

My father grew up as one of the few Jewish residents in the Back of the Yards neighborhood. He
was forced to defend himself against attacks by teachers and students. Once he had, he gained their
respect. He then took it upon himself to defend and protect new students at the school, some of
whom became his life-long friends.

My mother is from rural southern Poland. She was orphaned at 11 years of age, soon after the
German Anschluss. Her mother died from typhoid fever, her father was taken to Auschwitz
(where, based on my research, he died), and her closest brother was shot to death just steps away
from their home after having escaped from a labor camp and traveling hundreds of miles. He was
just a teenager.

Despite the tragedies suffered by my mother and the intolerance experienced by my father, they
treated others fairly and with compassion, regardless of who they were, where they came from,
what their sexual orientation was or what religion they were. These are traits they instilled in me
and that I try to emulate every day as a lawyer and as a person. These are traits that I will bring
with me to the bench.

You might also like