Chicago—Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP is pleased to announce that Sheldon T. Zenner, a Chicago-based partner and the national co-chair of the firm’s White Collar Criminal and Civil Litigation and Compliance Practice, is the recipient of the Legal Assistance Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago’s (LAF) 2010 Champion for Justice Award. Mr. Zenner will be honored at an awards luncheon on June 25, 2010, at the Palmer House Hilton in Chicago.
The Champion for Justice Award is a lifetime achievement award, presented annually to an individual who, in the judgment of LAF’s Board of Directors, has demonstrated a strong commitment to the need for free legal services for the poor in general, and to the Legal Assistance Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago in particular.
The mission of the LAF is to work together to provide high-quality civil legal services to low- income and disadvantaged people and communities. Through advocacy, education, collaboration and litigation, the LAF empowers individuals, protects fundamental rights, strengthens communities, creates opportunities and achieves justice.
Over the course of his career, Mr. Zenner has helped launch the Lawyers’ Committee for Better Housing, Chicago Lawyer magazine and Congregation Sukkat Shalom, and has served on each of their boards of directors. Prior to joining Katten, he worked at the Better Government Association and Business and Professional People for the Public Interest, he was an associate at Devoe Shadur & Krupp and then clerked for U.S. District Court Judge Marvin Aspen. In 1981, he joined the U.S. Attorney’s Office, where he served until 1989. As a criminal prosecutor and supervisor in the U.S. Attorney’s Office, he prosecuted hate crimes, vote fraud and public corruption cases, helping to convict corrupt judges, bagmen and lawyers in Operation Greylord.
In addition to being a longstanding board member and supporter of LAF, Mr. Zenner has also been active in pro bono matters throughout his career, from assisting with the Lost Boys of Sudan to Lawyers for the Creative Arts and the Daniel Murphy Foundation. He also has assisted innumerable individuals of limited means in criminal and civil matters, and led a team of Katten lawyers in providing legal help in achieving freedom for Lawrencia Bembenek, who was wrongly convicted of murder and had been serving a life sentence.
At Katten, Mr. Zenner concentrates his practice in white collar and fraud litigation and is involved in a wide range of investigations involving antitrust, securities, health care, FCPA, education and tax issues. He regularly counsels boards of directors, audit committees and special committees on compliance and corporate governance issues and, over his 32-year career, has represented countless companies and individuals in both internal and external criminal and civil investigations and ancillary lawsuits.
In addition, Mr. Zenner has served as adjunct faculty at Northwestern University School of Law and Northwestern University Medill School of Journalism, having taught courses in clinical trial practice, the legal system and law and ethics of journalism. He also has lectured at the Corporate Counsel Institute, the ABA's Annual National Institute on Securities Fraud, the University of Chicago, Northwestern University and DePaul University, and is a faculty member for Northwestern University's Short Course for Prosecutors and Defense Counsel.
Mr. Zenner earned both his B.S. and J.D. from Northwestern University.