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Jill Leka

Clark Baird Smith LLP

Jill Leka is a strategic business partner helping employers solve their thorniest labor and employment law issues. She focuses on traditional labor matters as well as those involving employment litigation and the public (including educational) sector.  In that role, she also proactively counsels public, not for profit and private sector clients to position them for success. She represents employers in grievance and interest arbitrations, unfair labor practices and Union representation proceedings, disciplinary, pension/PEDA/PSEBA, constitutional and discrimination litigation, as well as conducts complex investigations. Ms. Leka has successfully negotiated hundreds of collective bargaining agreements.  She also advises not for profits and educational institutions, including institutions of higher learning in all legal matters, including serving as General Counsel and all issues associated therewith.  Prior to starting CBS LLP with her colleagues, she practiced at Seyfarth Shaw LLP from 1993 until 2010, where her legal focus closely resembled that at CBS LLP. Ms. Leka currently serves as General Counsel for the National Public Employer Labor Relations Association and as a member of the Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA) Human Rights Committee. In addition, she is an author of “Much Smarter Bargaining” (NPELRA 2017), “Freedom of Speech in the Public Workplace” (CABA 1998), “Illinois Statutes Affecting Public Employee Relations” (IPELRA 1995), and “Survey of Employment Law” (1993 Southern Illinois University Law Journal).  She has conducted numerous training programs on a variety of subjects and is a frequent speaker on various labor and employment topics. She earned a B.S. from Southern Illinois University and a J.D. from Southern Illinois University School of Law.