Illinois Professional Responsibility CLE Requirements

Illinois professional responsibility CLE requirements have changed. Illinois attorneys are required to complete a minimum of one hour of Diversity/Inclusion training and one hour of Mental Health/Substance Abuse training during each two-year reporting period. These new requirements are now part of the six hours of total Professional Responsibility CLE required for attorneys during each reporting period. This two-hour program has been approved for two hours of professional responsibility credit: specifically, one hour of Mental Health/Substance Abuse and one hour of Diversity/Inclusion.

Please note, CLE Certificates for the program titled, The Path to Lawyer Well Being & Conscious Inclusion, will be emailed to webcast participants 7-10 business days after the live viewing which took place on February 21, 2019.

Presented by:

Robert A. Clifford

Founder and Senior Partner, Clifford Law Offices, Moderator


Program Information:

Date: Thursday, Feb. 21, 2019
Time: 2:30-4:30 p.m. CST
Place: The 2019 program is available via webcast broadcast live from the DePaul Center, Room 8005, One East Jackson Blvd. Chicago, IL.

Registration is required to attend the free program.

For questions, please call Clifford Law offices at (312) 756-7575 or email

Hour 1

The Path to Lawyer Well Being

Too many in our profession are too exhausted, too impaired or too disengaged to develop into their best selves. Many find themselves in a profession drained of civility and compassion and plagued by chronic stress, poor self-care, and high rates of depression and alcohol problems.

The result is that the legal profession may not be living up to its full potential as an institution in which attorneys can thrive, best serve their clients and contribute to a better society. Further, recent research demonstrates that lawyers are far more likely to suffer from substance use and mental health disorders compared to other professions and the public as a whole. What can we do and how do we create a movement of change towards improving the health and well-being of the legal profession?

This program discusses practical steps that can be taken by lawyers, law firms, bar associations, judges, legal educators and regulatory counsel to shift the legal culture from one that can be self-destructive to one that focuses on the well-being that is expected by all those who look to the legal system for justice. In addition, participants also will learn ways to foster healthy lifestyles within their practice settings as well as how to implement some stress-reduction techniques at home and in the workplace in examining best practices for promoting healthy lives in the legal profession.

Moderated by:

Robert A. Clifford

Founder and Senior Partner, Clifford Law Offices, Moderator


Robin Belleau

Executive Director, Lawyers' Assistance Program (LAP)

James Faught

Associate Dean for Administration, Loyola University School of Law, and Chicago Bar Association, Future of the Profession Chair, Law Student and New Lawyer Committee, LAP Board Member

Hon. E. Kenneth Wright, Jr.

Cook County Circuit Court, Presiding Judge, Municipal Division, and Chair, Illinois State Bar Association Special Committee on Health and Wellness

Tracy L. Kepler

Director, Center for Professional Responsibility, American Bar Association

Karen Munoz

Lawyer, Certified Yoga Instructor, LAP Illinois Task Force on Well Being and CBA Member of Mindfulness & the Law Committee

Hour 2

Conscious Inclusion

Implicit bias occurs in every aspect of the law – from the courtroom to the law firm to legal non-profit organizations. It is a daily challenge to consciously include those who deserve to be part of the picture. The Illinois Supreme Court IPI Civil Jury Committee promulgated a new instruction for civil jury trials in Illinois on implicit bias in May 2018, recognizing that we “all have feelings, assumptions, perceptions, fears, and stereotypes about others. Some biases we are aware of and others we might not be fully aware of, which is why they are called implicit biases or ‘unconscious biases.’” Additionally, it warns that “our biases” often affect how we act, favorably or unfavorably, toward someone. Bias can affect our thoughts, how we remember, what we see and hear, whom we believe or disbelieve, and how we make important decisions. Illinois is the seventh state to require MCLE on the elimination of bias. The terms surrounding this issue hold no universal definition, and our panel of various experts in this field will discuss what these issues mean in the context of various institutions, interest groups and legal entities.

Our speakers will discuss a “how-to” in these various areas and how diversity can be meaningful. It is the moral thing to do. It’s the right thing to do. And it’s even good for business. The first step, though, is understanding implicit bias and recognizing when it may be permeating your decisions. Hypotheticals will be discussed as well as ways to reduce implicit bias and how diversity and inclusion can become part of one’s everyday life in this one-hour interactive, lively discussion.

Moderated by:

Robert A. Clifford

Founder and Senior Partner, Clifford Law Offices, Moderator


Hon. Thomas More Donnelly

Cook County Circuit Court, and Chair, Illinois Judicial College Board of Trustees, the Illinois Supreme Court’s educational arm

Cunyon Gordon

Senior Counsel and Director, Settlement Assistance Program, Chicago Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights

Josie M. Gough

Assistant Dean for Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity at Loyola University Chicago’s School of Law

Allison Wood

Principal of Legal Ethics Consulting, P.C., Former Hearing Board Chair and former Litigation Counsel with the ARDC

2019 The Path to Lawyer Well Being & Conscious Inclusion

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