About Us

Dedicated to clients, committed to community

The American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers was founded “To provide leadership that promotes the highest degree of professionalism and excellence in the practice of family law.” The Illinois Chapter became the Academy’s first state chapter, remaining one of its most active.


Illinois Chapter Fellows advance the practice of family law among their peers by organizing and leading seminars and teaching continuing legal education classes. Fellows also help educate legislators at the state level–helping to ensure that the implementation of laws matches the intention behind them and that laws affecting families are thoughtfully considered.


The Illinois Chapter’s Board of Managers and its officers assume a guiding role in upholding the Chapter’s principles and vision.

Stuart G. Gelfman

Robert D. Segal
President Elect

Kimberly Cook
First Vice President

Shana Vitek​
Second Vice President

Raif Palmer
Third Vice President

Jeffrey W. Brend
National Delegate

Stephen Botti

A. Marcy Newman

Gunnar J. Gitlin
Immediate Past President

James M. Quigley
Past President

Term expiring October 2026

Brian Blitz
Ashley Davis
Kathryn Mickelson
Jared Pinkus
Jamie Ryan

Term expiring October 2025

Staci Balbirer
Jacki Birnbaum
Myra Foutris
Steve Rakowski
Richard Zuckerman

Term expiring October 2024

Laura Ashmore
Donna Farley
Paulette Gray
Vanessa Hammer
Steve Peskind