Jill Otte for Judge - Endorsed by Labor
Jill Otte for Judge - Endorsed by Womens' Rights Organizations
Why I'm Running
My Passion to Serve the People of DuPage County
My career ambition has long been to be a judge. Serving DuPage County as a Circuit Court Judge would allow me to continue my 27 year legal career as a public servant. I am passionate about ensuring that all citizens are treated respectfully and professionally in our courtrooms. Additionally, the DuPage Judiciary is in need of diversity as women and minorities are greatly underrepresented.
Why Vote for Me?
I will be an effective judge because I have trial experience and the proper temperament. I have been a litigator for 27 years and tried hundreds of cases in both criminal and civil courtrooms, and as a prosecutor and as a defense attorney. I have also witnessed many courtroom scenarios where deescalating the atmosphere was required.
At the Kane County State’s Attorney’s Office from 1995 until 2000, I litigated over 100 criminal trials, including 11 jury trials. In August 2000, I made the switch from criminal law to civil law and moved to the Illinois Attorney General’s Office. I spent over 11 years defending State agencies in cases involving personal injury, wrongful death, property damage, contracts, and employee discipline. In 2012, I was promoted to Deputy Chief of the Workers’ Compensation Bureau. I litigated about 50 trials and maintained a caseload of approximately 250 cases.
In 2014 I was promoted again to my current position as Chief of the Workers’ Compensation Bureau in Chicago. I now manage 16 attorneys who appear daily before 23 arbitrators in 10 venues. About half of my time is spent advising these junior attorneys on matters such as trial strategy, client issues and communication issues with opposing counsels, witnesses, and clients. My current position as Chief has honed my skills in decision making, analysis, reasoning, decisiveness, self-management and communication.
In addition to my courtroom experience, my temperament also makes me well suited for the bench. I have maintained my composure in many difficult courtroom situations. For example I have learned that good manners matter. I have found that if I am polite when speaking with others, including judges, witnesses, courtroom staff, and coworkers, they tend to give me the same courtesy. I have found that my natural tendency to be thoughtful, courteous and kind serves me well.
Finally, women and minorities are greatly underrepresented in the DuPage Judiciary. In the last 12 years, 25 judges have been appointed and only eight appointees were women. Only two appointments have been persons of color. Of the current 46 judges, only 13 are women. A more diverse judiciary would better represent our community as a whole. I think that my perspective as a woman, an attorney, and a mother will be beneficial to all those who appear before me.
I look forward to the privilege of being able to serve the citizens of DuPage County as a Circuit Court Judge.