Former Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan Lands New Job

Former Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan has found a new job.

Madigan joined Kirkland & Ellis LLP's offices in Chicago and Washington, D.C., as a litigation partner, the law firm announced Tuesday.

Madigan was Illinois' first female attorney general and served 16 years in office before deciding not to seek a fifth term in 2018, making her the longest-serving attorney general in state history.

At Kirkland, she will broadly focus on state and federal investigations and regulatory work, internal investigations, crisis management and high-level litigation, according to her bio on the firm's website.

"Throughout my life, I have been passionate about the law and driven to find solutions to complicated legal matters," Madigan said in a statement, adding, "I am thrilled to continue practicing law at Kirkland, a firm of great lawyers who are successful in helping clients both proactively and reactively."

"Important to my work will be pro bono service that aligns with my belief that everyone should have an advocate to fight for them," Madigan continued.

The daughter of powerful Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan, who also chairs the state's Democratic Party, Lisa Madigan was first elected by a 3-point margin in 2002 after one term as an Illinois state senator.

For each subsequent statewide campaign she ran thereafter, she enjoyed comfortable, double-digit victories - thus stunning the political world when she announced in September 2017 that she would not seek re-election the following year.

Her decision to step aside brought forth a wide field of candidates in the Democratic primary to replace her, from which state Sen. Kwame Raoul emerged victorious and defeated Republican Erika Harold last fall.

News of Lisa Madigan's hiring at Kirkland came nearly eight months after she left office in January. She's largely stayed out of the spotlight since her time as attorney general came to an end, even amid speculation over her political future.

When she announced she would not seek re-election, Lisa Madigan said she had no "immediate plans" to run for another office, and continued to quell rumors of her interest in running for both governor of Illinois and mayor of Chicago.

She had previously eyed a run for governor in 2013 before deciding not to move forward, citing a conflict with her father's position as the longtime speaker of the House. Speculation about a potential campaign for mayor ramped up when then-Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced in September 2018 that he would also not be seeking another term - speculation that Lisa Madigan quickly shot down. 

"I care very deeply about our city. I know that we have some significant problems to deal with and I intend to continue in helping in any way that I can but I also intend to do that as a resident of the city of Chicago, not as a candidate or the mayor of the city of Chicago," she said immediately following Emanuel's announcement.

"Lisa is recognized for her professionalism and the results she delivered during her career in public service, which earned her respect across the nation among the state attorneys general community,” Mark Filip, a member of Kirkland’s global management executive committee, said in a statement on her hiring.

"Her vast experience will be beneficial to our clients facing complex challenges, particularly as state attorney general actions become increasingly prevalent in many cases," the statement continued. 

Contact Us