Q&A with Illinois State Bar Association President Anna Krolikowska

  • Anna Krolikowska was voted in as the fifth female president of the Illinois State Bar Association.

    Anna Krolikowska was voted in as the fifth female president of the Illinois State Bar Association. PHOTO COURTESY OF ANGELA B. GARBOT

Updated 1/6/2022 9:33 AM

On June 17 in Springfield, Northbrook-based family law attorney Anna Krolikowska was installed as the 145th president of the Illinois State Bar Association, and just the fifth woman selected as president after a statewide vote. Krolikowska won the vote in all 102 Illinois counties.

She's served on the ISBA Board of Governors since 2014 and in its General Assembly since 2009. Involved with many ISBA committees, councils and boards during her tenure, Krolikowska is active with five bar associations and several other legal associations as well.


In 2019 she was named to the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin's Forty Under 40 list, recognized as a "Super Lawyer in Family Law" by Super Lawyers in 2019, and has earned the Chicago Volunteer Legal Services Foundation's Distinguished Service Award.

Her focus as ISBA president is threefold: inclusion and diversity for Illinois attorneys; life/work wellness; and the creation of an ISBA business institute to help support attorneys' business skills.

The Herald asked Krolikowska to participate in a brief question-and-answer session, as follows.

H: First, how does it feel to be only the fifth female president of the Illinois State Bar Association? What does it mean?

AK: I am very proud to serve as the fifth female president of the ISBA. It means that with hard work, mentorship and encouragement of amazing friends, a young girl without any lawyers in her family can become president of the ISBA. It means that paths to leadership in legal organizations are open to women.

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H: As president, what are your responsibilities?

AK: I serve as the chief spokesperson and emissary for the ISBA. I advocate for our members and work to ensure that we serve our members well. I also work to maintain a good working relationship with the Illinois Supreme Court, the Illinois judiciary and other bar associations and related organizations.

H: How did you get interested in practicing the law?

AK: Studying for the eighth-grade Constitution test peaked my interest in the rule of law. I then studied civics in high school and political studies and international relations at Loyola University Chicago. I was also very fortunate to have been selected to the Gannon Women's Leadership Program.

H: We hear you've recently had a baby. As life-work balance is an emphasis of yours, has that become more important to you with the birth of your first child? What recommendations do you have to maintain that balance?

AK: Yes, life-work has become even more important. I think many of us have been reflecting on life-work balance during the last 18 months.

My best advice would be that you can't do it all at once, so pick what you will focus on in a given moment and then be fully present.


H: What is something surprising about you most people would not know?

AK: Most people would not know that I, and my husband, are avid ballroom dancers. And, in better times, I love to travel to interesting faraway places.

H: What's the most realistic legal drama you've come across on television or in the movies?

AK: This is a great question. By far, "The Good Wife." Not only was it the most realistic legal drama I have seen, but it also captured the vibe of the legal community, and also of Chicago.

Yes, there was some made-for-TV drama but that would be true of any show or movie. And of course, (actresses) Julianna Margolis and Christine Baranski are fantastic.

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