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4 appointed to "Assistance Attorneys" pilot program in 11th Circuit

On Tuesday, August 30, 2016 Judge Kevin P. Fitzgerald, Chief Judge of the Eleventh Judicial Circuit of Illinois, issued a groundbreaking court order when he appointed four attorneys as “Eleventh Judicial Circuit Assistance Attorneys.” The individuals honored with this cutting edge role are: Erin Donaldson, Mike McElvain, Todd Miller, and Judge Rebecca Foley. The Chief Judge’s Court Order, Administrative Order 2016 – 8, is a critical step in a pilot program spearheaded by Lawyers’ Assistance Program (LAP) Volunteer and Board member, Mike McElvain. 

The pilot program aims to make it easier for attorneys beyond the Chicagoland area, an often underserved population, to access LAP’s free and confidential services such as peer support, assessments, interventions, and referrals. The four newly appointed Court Assistance Attorneys serve as local extensions of the Lawyers’ Assistance Program. As such, they receive the same immunity and are bound by the same confidentiality as LAP employees and volunteers, as provided in the Alcoholism and Drug Addiction Interveners and Reporters Immunity Act, 745 ILCS 35/1 et. al., and the provisions of Rule 1.6(d) of the Illinois Rules of Professional Conduct of 2010.  These Court Assistance Attorneys have committed themselves to confidentially accepting “information about Eleventh Judicial Circuit attorneys and judges in need of assistance for the sole purpose of relaying that information to the professional staff at LAP.”

Any attorney, judge or law student in McClean County can confidentially contact any of these four individuals if they are concerned about their own or about a colleague’s wellbeing.  Issues of concern may include, but not be limited to: stress, anxiety, grief, depression, ARDC concerns, aging, and career transition, among many others. All services and communications are totally free and confidential.  The four Circuit Assistance Attorneys may be confidentially contacted as listed below:

Erin Donaldson

One State Farm Plaza, B-3

Bloomington, IL 61710

309-766-4023 (phone)

309-766-6862 (fax)

Todd Miller

Ogar and Miller

108 W. Monroe

Bloomington, IL 61701

309-827-8551 (phone)

309-827-0881 (fax)

Mike McElvain

234 E. Front Street

Bloomington, IL 61701

309-828-3340 (phone)

309-828-3743 (fax)

Judge Rebecca Foley

Mclean County Law & Justice Center, Rm 522

104 W. Front Street

Bloomington, IL 601701

309-888-5245 (phone)

For more information on LAP’s services, or to learn more about how you can help, visit LAP’s website at, or call LAP at 1-800-LAP-1233

Posted on September 1, 2016 by Chris Bonjean