Freddrenna Lyle: Candidate Profile
1st Appellate District (Democrat)
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Note: Answers provided have not been edited for grammar, misspellings or typos. In some instances, candidate claims that could not be immediately verified have been omitted.
Family: Currently reside with niece and nephew
Education: The John Marshall Law School, Juris Doctorate, 1980
University of Illinois at Chicago, Bachelor of Arts, 1973
Civic involvement: Member of the Beyond Pink Breast Cancer Advisory Group, Park Manor Neighbors, Chatham Avalon Community Council, NAACP, Rainbow PUSH, Eat to Live Group
Elected offices held: Alderman and Committeeman of 6th Ward, City of Chicago 1998-2011
Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: No.
Why are you running for this office? Is there a particular issue that motivates you, and if so, what is that?
I am running because I believe that I can continue a lifetime of service to the community at large and the legal community in particular by serving on the Illinois Appellate Court. I am running because I have a commitment to justice and am well qualified to sit on the Illinois Appellate Court. I believe it is important that there be not only diversity of race and gender but also a diversity of experiences and viewpoints on the Courts of a diverse society, at all levels.
What differentiates you most from your opponents in the race?
Each candidate for the Illinois Court has the minimum qualifications established by the Illinois Constitution. I however have a combination of professional and life experiences that differentiate me. Over 30 years of practicing law allowed me to work in diverse areas. From the criminal defense work in misdemeanor State Courts to Federal conspiracy trials, I have amassed an understanding of the workings of the criminal division. I tried cases from replevin actions to tort defense, handled matters in Chancery, Probate, Law and family law thus attaining a substantial understanding of the civil divisions of the Courts. I developed a transactional practice from real estate closings to municipal financings, permitting me to understand the issues involved in non litigation areas. Additionally, I had the opportunity of representing the people of the Chicago as Alderman of the 6th Ward. As we are the culminations of our many life experiences, those experiences shape and form our impressions and decisions. My professional and personal experiences sharpened my intellect, enhanced my listening skills and reinforced my belief in equal justice. These life lessons which can not be taught nor bought have provided me with the intellectual capacity, the analytical skills, the experience, integrity, work ethos and enthusiasm for the law, to be a great Appellate Court Justice.
Finally, is there anything we haven't asked about that you feel we should know?
To some, my path to the Appellate Court might be considered non-traditional. Rather than practice law, teach law, serve in the Bar Association and then ascend to the Judiciary, I practiced law for 18 years, serving actively in Bar Association and professional development capacities and developing a favorable reputation in the legal community. I then took a 13-year detour to provide public service in a legislative capacity as a member of the Chicago City Council, while serving in community associations and the development of young people. I then returned to the law before ascending to the Bench. It was shocking to me that some would look at my service in the highest legislative body in the City of Chicago as a disqualification for judicial service, rather than proof of the wealth of knowledge and experience that I possess. The reality however is that my path is not unusual, the Appellate Court is an elected position with the qualifications established by the Illinois Constitution and many of the Justices on the Appellate and the Supreme Court have had similar career paths.