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65th Annual Meeting of the
Seventh Circuit Bar Association
Judicial Conference of the Seventh Circuit

 Sunday, May 1

3:00 - 6:00



6:00 - 9:00

Opening Program

Chicago Cultural Center, with docents

Program ideas: 

1.               Best-of Foundation’s immigration program

2.               Update on impact of war on drugs program


Monday, May 2


7:30 - 6:00

Registration will be open from 7:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

7:45 - 8:45

Bankruptcy Judges’ Breakfast


7:45 - 8:45

Magistrate Judges’ Breakfast


9:00 - 9:30

Welcome Remarks and Introductions



Michael T. Brody, President,
Seventh Circuit Bar Association



Hon. Diane P. Wood, Chief Judge,
United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit


Report of the Clerk of Court
Gino J. Agnello, Clerk of Court,
United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit



9:30 - 12:45

Plenary Sessions One and Two

The Science of Implicit Bias and Its Impact in Legal Practice

Segment One:     Overview of Implicit Bias

Segment Two:     Implicit Bias Across The Law

Segment Three:   Panel Discussion of De-biasing Techniques for Judges and Lawyers

9:30 - 2:30

Spouses’ Event:

Enjoy private tours of two of Milwaukee's Museums: The Grohmann Museum and the Milwaukee Art Museum. Guests will enjoy lunch followed by a private shopping experience at the Museum Store of the Milwaukee Art Museum. Transportation will be provided via a mini-coach bus.
10:35 - 10:50
Morning Break


12:30 - 2:00

Annual Luncheon

Report on the State of the Circuit, Hon. Diane Wood, Chief Judge


Michael Strautmanis

Vice President of Civic Engagement, Obama Foundation (Presidential Library)


2:15 - 3:30

Plenary Session III

The Use of Internet Research by Judges And Juries

Judges Posner and Hamilton

District Court judge(s)

Law professor





3:45 - 4:30

Working Group Reports

A.     Report from Judge Crabb working group on pro se litigation and recruitment of counsel                                                       

B.     Report from Judge Kennelly working group on conditions of supervised release



Annual Reception

6:00 - 9:00

Annual Dinner



Hon. Elena Kagan, Associate Justice, Supreme Court of the United States


Tuesday, May 3



7:30 - 12:00



7:45 - 8:45

Newer Lawyers’ Mentoring Breakfast with the Judges

All lawyers and judges are invited to attend. Judge Wood will deliver remarks. Questions will be provided at the tables for discussion.


Memorial: Hon. Richard D. Cudahy, Circuit Judge, presented by Hon. David F. Hamilton, Circuit Judge

9:15 - 10:15

Co- Plenary Session: Deference Mistakes

Professor Jonathan Masur recently published an article entitled “Deference Mistakes,” in which he argues that courts, in citing and following prior decisions, often fail to recognize the deference regime under which those decisions were decided.  He will discuss the topic with judges and lawyers.

Hon. Gary Feinerman, Northern District Of Illinois, moderator

Prof. Jonathan Masur

District Court/Court of Appeals Judge

Carolyn Shapiro, Illinois Solicitor General [suggested]


9:15 - 10:15

Co- Plenary Session: Municipal Bankruptcy

Prof. Douglas Baird, U of C.

Judge Steven Rhodes (Ret.)

Kevyn Orr

Brian Murray, moderator


Morning Break

10:00 - 10:50

Civil Breakout

The Role of Mediation in Case Resolution                                                                                  

In 2012 less than 2 percent of federal civil cases went to trial.  Through effective mediation, procedural and substantive justice can be effectuated in an efficient manner. Learn from the experts what preconceptions might be an impediment to resolution and how to best utilize a free service to the benefit of your clients.

Program participants: 

                              Magistrate Judge Valdez

                              Mediator from the Seventh Circuit program

                              Private mediator (?)

                              Plaintiff and Defense counsel representative

 10:00 - 10:50

Criminal Breakout

Disparities in Enforcement, Prosecution, and Punishment                                               [ROOM]

Description: This breakout session fits well with the conference’s overarching topic of implicit bias. Subtopics the panel will address include: race disparities in sentencing, with a focus on dueling empirical analyses that alternately find judicial discretion or prosecutorial discretion to be the source of those disparities; geographic disparities in sentencing; race disparities in law enforcement, including the question of selective enforcement on the basis of race in stash house robbery cases and arrests, see United States v. Davis, 793 F.3d 712 (7th Cir. 2015) (en banc).


. Hon.  Lynn Adelman , Eastern District of Wisconsin
. Hon.  Ketanji Brown Jackson , District of Columbia., former chair of the US Sentencing Commission

. Professor Sonja Starr (U. Mich.) has written extensively on the topic. Can present empirical perspective

AUSA Julie Porter (Chief of the Criminal Division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Chicago)
Aisha Edwards, Supervising Attorney, Cabrini Green Legal Aid (former Assistant States’ Attorney, current criminal defense lawyer)
Moderator: Alison Siegler (Univ. of Chicago Law School)

10:00 - 10:50

Bankruptcy Breakout

Bankruptcy Appeals: New Rules and Strategic Considerations

Hon. Charles N. Clevert, Jr., E.D. Wis.

Hon. A. Benjamin Goldgar, N.D. Ill. Bankruptcy Court

Jerome R. Kerkman, Kerkman & Dunn

Ann Ustad Smith, Michael Best & Friedrich LLP

Hon. Diane S. Sykes, United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit

Hon. Susan V. Kelley, E.D. Wis. Bankruptcy Court (moderator)

10:00 - 10:50 Intellectual Property Breakout

Supreme Court’s Recent Patent Law Decisions

Hon. Rubén Castillo, Chief Judge, N.D. Ill.

Hon. Virginia M. Kendall, N.D. Ill.

Hon. James D. Peterson, W.D. Wis.

Arthur Gollwitzer III, Michael Best & Friedrich LLP

Andrew T. Dufresne, Ph.D., Michael Best & Friedrich LLP


District Breakouts


Northern District of Illinois Judicial Panel


Central and Southern Districts of Illinois Judicial Panel


Northern and Southern Districts of Indiana Judicial Panel


Eastern and Western Districts of Wisconsin Judicial Panel

12:00 p.m.

Annual Business Luncheon for Federal Judges and Clerks of Court



Annual Meeting and Business Luncheon of the Seventh Circuit Bar Association

All members of the Seventh Circuit Bar Association are invited to attend this luncheon and annual business meeting, at which new officers and members of the board of governors will be elected.


1:00 p.m.

Executive Session for Members of the Federal Judiciary


3:00 p.m.

Judicial Council Meeting


4:00 p.m.