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Overview

Working exclusively with higher education entities, Lisa is more than involved in the industry – she is deeply committed to higher education.

She represents the full range of higher education institutions, including private non-profit, public, healthcare-affiliated, religious, small privately-owned institutions and large publicly-traded school groups. 

From serving as an administrator at a small private college to her role as vice president for a large publicly-traded school system, Lisa’s multifarious background directly correlates to her passion and dedication to furthering the business and educational goals of clients. Her knowledge of this complex, niche industry provides pragmatic approaches and tangible solutions. Plus, her years of litigation experience allow her to make strategic decisions to mitigate risks for clients.

Lisa’s extensive on-the-ground industry experience at large and small educational institutions allows her to:

  • Provide strategic and comprehensive regulatory counseling to higher education institutions regarding compliance with accreditation requirements, rules governing federal student financial aid (Title IV) and state regulatory requirements.
  • Represent higher education institutions in litigation before trial and appellate courts.
  • Assist higher education institutions through the change of control process, including serving as regulatory counsel on mergers and acquisitions as well as organizational restructuring.
  • Conduct internal investigations for colleges and universities on sensitive legal, regulatory, and governance matters.  
  • Assist institutions in preparing for accreditation visits and responding to accreditation actions, including adverse actions.

Lisa broadens and shares her knowledge through involvement in education-related causes, such as serving on the board of directors of Donnelly College, NNPRFTC, Level Playing Field scholarship foundation, and the First Friday Club of Chicago.


Industry

Services

Recognition

  • National Black Lawyers (NBL), Top 100, 2021
  • The Legal 500 United States, Leading Lawyer, 2021 
  • Illinois Super Lawyers, Rising Star, 2009 

Education

  • J.D., Saint Louis University School of Law
    • Public Law Review, Articles Editor
  • B.A., Lake Forest College
    • American Studies
    • Honors in American Studies
    • Honors on Senior Thesis

Admissions

  • Illinois
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit

Professional Memberships and Certifications

  • Black Women Lawyers’ Association
  • Chicago Bar Association, Alliance for Women, Board of Directors, 2009
  • National Association of College and University Attorneys (NACUA)
     

Clerkship

The Hon. Charles A. Shaw, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Missouri

Experience
  • Served as regulatory counsel on various transactions, including mergers, acquisitions and restructures of public, private, publicly traded, religious and healthcare institutions of higher education.
  • Federal court litigation on behalf of university clients related to employment discrimination and faculty First Amendment rights.
  • Assisted colleges before the Illinois Board of Higher Education related to potential revocation of operating and degree-granting authority.
  • Provided counsel to online university clients related to state authorization and federal regulatory requirements for distance education.
  • Assisted various institutions in responding to and successfully avoiding potential sanctions or adverse actions from institutional or programmatic accrediting agencies.
  • Conducted comprehensive internal investigations related to sexual misconduct and governance concerns.
Community Leadership
  • Donnelly College, Board of Trustees, 2015-present
  • Level Playing Field Foundation, treasurer, 2011-present
  • National Nurse Practitioner Residency & Fellowship Training Consortium (NNPRFTC), Board of Directors, January 2018-present
  • The First Friday Club of Chicago, September 2020-present

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