Mr. King, a resident of the Fourth Subcircuit, was appointed by the Court to fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge William J. Kunkle. The appointment is effective October 24, 2014 and will terminate December 5, 2016, when the position is filled by the 2016 General Election.
Justice Mary Jane Theis recommended the appointment to the Supreme Court after she announced an open application process and after the candidates were reviewed by bar associations and Justice Theis’ bipartisan screening committee.
“I am humbled and honored by the Supreme Court’s confidence in me,” King said. “I am grateful to Justice Theis and the Court for this opportunity. I am eager to serve the people on the bench, and looking forward to starting work.”
King received his B.A. and M.A. degrees in journalism from NIU before earning his juris doctor degree from The John Marshall Law School in 1981. Mr. King served in the United States Marine Corps in both active and reserve duty from 1970-1976 and was honorably discharged in 1976.
Since 1988, Mr. King has worked as a solo practitioner, focusing his practice on personal injury, chancery, estate, and criminal matters. In addition, he has also served since 1988 as a special assistant attorney general for the Illinois Attorney General’s office. His responsibilities include preparing cases before juries in eminent domain matters. Mr. King also serves as attorney for Lyons Township.
Upon graduation from law school, Mr. King worked for two years as assistant corporate counsel for the City of Chicago. From 1983 to 1987, he also worked as an assistant attorney general in the special litigation division of the Illinois Attorney General’s office. While there, he represented numerous state agencies, including the Department of Transportation, the Department of Corrections, Department of Mental Health and Developmental Disability, and the Lottery Control Board at both the trial and appellate levels for federal and state courts.
Mr. King’s extensive legal experience includes working as a staff attorney for the Cook County Treasurer’s office; as district attorney for the South Lyons Township Sanitary District; and as an attorney for the Justice-Willow Springs Water Commission.
Mr. King is a member of the Chicago Bar Association, the Illinois State Bar Association, the Chicago Council of Lawyers, and is a member of the Phi Kappa Theta national fraternity. He has also served as a volunteer attorney for the Lyons Township Mental Health Commission since 1987.
He was recommended by the Alliance of Bar Associations, including the Women’s Bar Association of Illinois. He was also found Qualified by the Chicago Bar Association and the Chicago Council of Lawyers.
Under the Illinois Constitution, the Supreme Court holds the authority to fill interim judicial vacancies until the next General Election. Traditionally, the three justices from the First Judicial District in Cook County rotate in recommending a candidate to the Court for the appointment.
In addition to co-chairs Judges Andersen and Gallagher, members of Justice Theis’ screening commit-tee are: retired U.S. District Court Judge David H. Coar; Alison C. Conlon; Mary A. Dempsey; Jean M. Golden; Denise Kane; Elizabeth A. Kaveny; Michael D. Monico; Michael I Rothstein; Sr. Cathe-rine M. Ryan; Francine Soliunas; Miguel del Valle; Richard Waris; and Mark E. Wojcik.
The Alliance of Bar Associations for Judicial Screenings is comprised of bar groups working collabo-ratively to improve the process of screening judicial candidates in Cook County. The participating bar groups are: the Asian American Bar Association of the Greater Chicago Area; Black Women’s Lawyers Association of Greater Chicago; Chicago Council of Lawyers; Cook County Bar Association; Decalogue Society of Lawyers; Hellenic Bar Association; Hispanic Lawyers Association of Illinois; Illinois State Bar Association; Lesbian and Gay Bar Association of Chicago; Puerto Rican Bar Association of Illinois and the Women’s Bar Association of Illinois.