jill otte

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 allowed me to hone my skills in decision making, analysis, reasoning, decisiveness, self-management, problem solving, and communication.

Legal Experience:


  • Chief of the Workers’ Compensation Bureau, Chicago, March 2014 to present
    • Supervise 16 litigators who appear daily in courtrooms in the Northern Illinois counties.
    • Responsible for approximately 3,700 cases.
    • Manage operations of the Bureau, including interviewing attorney applicants.
  • Deputy Chief of the Workers’ Compensation Bureau, Chicago, February 2012 to March 2014
    • Litigated approximately 50 workers’ compensation trials.
    • Managed a caseload of approximately 250 files.
  • Assistant Attorney General, General Law Bureau, Court of Claims Unit, August 2000 to February 2012
    • Litigated approximately 100 bench trials, including cases of wrongful death, personal injury, property damage, contracts, and employee discipline.


  • Assistant State’s Attorney, March 1995 to August 2000
    • Prosecuted 11 jury trials.
    • Litigated approximately 100 bench trials in Traffic/Misdemeanor, DUI, Mental Health Felony, and Felony Drug Courts.
    • Earned the Office’s informal Ace of Spades award for the highest number of felony trials in 1999.


  • Professor, August 1996 to May 2000
    • Taught students legal principles in “The Legal Environment of Business” and “Business Law.”

SIXTEENTH JUDICIAL CIRCUIT, Kane County, Geneva, Illinois

  • Judicial Staff Attorney, August 1994 to March 1995
    • Conducted research for multiple judges.
    • Organized Judge Timothy Sheldon’s check-in procedures for attorneys and litigants in Small Claims Court.
    • Assisted domestic violence pro se litigants with order of protection paperwork to present to the Family Court judges.

Judicial Candidate Assessments:

  • DuPage County Bar Association - Rated “Highly Recommended” as a judicial candidate in August 2018 after an interview assessing the following criteria: legal knowledge and ability, judicial temperament, courtroom experience, breadth of legal experiences, reputation in the legal community, activities and leadership in the legal community and community at large, diligence and punctuality, and health.
  • 2017 Administrative Law Judge Examination - Passed the testing process in September 2018 administered by the Office of Personnel Management. The testing process consisted of an application, Situational Judgment Test, Experience Assessment, Writing Sample, Logic-Based Measurement Test, Written Demonstration and Structured Interview. Each of these parts of the examination evaluated my competencies in decision making, interpersonal skills, judicial analysis, judicial decisiveness, judicial management, judicial temperament, litigation and courtroom experience, oral communication, problem solving, professionalism, reasoning, self-management and writing.


  • J.D., Drake University Law School, 1994
  • B.A. in Speech Communications, University of Illinois, 1991


  • Lived in DuPage County for almost 20 years.
  • Married for over 20 years to husband Brian and raising two teenagers.
  • Adopted a dog in 2015 and to the surprise of everyone, myself included, became a dog lover.
  • Hobbies include running, walking the dog, reading, traveling, and spending time with family and friends.
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