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Honorary Board


Ann Chen

Ann Chen is Assistant General Counsel at TransUnion, managing legal matters in litigation, employment, intellectual property, real estate, and tax. She has significant in-house experience advising global businesses, including in the financial services, healthcare, and consumer goods industries. She is a leader in the area of diversity, equity, and inclusion, including previously leading the Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion program for the in-house legal department of a Fortune 100 company and as a Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD) Fellow. Ann received her BA from Yale University and her JD from the University of Michigan Law School. She clerked for U.S. District Judge Adalberto Jordan in the Southern District of Florida (now on the 11th Circuit). The National Law Journal previously named Ann a "Top 40 Under 40 - Chicago's Rising Stars."


Jason DeJonker

Jason DeJonker thrives on finding spot-on solutions for his clients. As an experienced deal maker and litigator, he is something of a law firm rarity – adept in the courtroom, in the boardroom, and at the closing table. Jason uses his vast know-how to assist clients with creditor’s rights and bankruptcy matters. Private equity investors, financial institutions, special servicers, Fortune 500 corporations, trustees and receivers bank on Jason’s creative approach to problem solving in both litigation and transactional matters.

Jason’s experience includes lender and borrower-side loan workouts, representations of debtors and secured creditors in Chapter 11 bankruptcy cases (including DIP and exit finance) and the plan confirmation process, commercial foreclosures, and complex collection and judgment collection matters. Out of the courtroom, he routinely counsels clients on structuring distressed transactions (including traditional M&A and commercial real estate transactions involving all asset types), provides advice to corporate management and boards of directors on fiduciary duty issues, and helps private equity and traditional lender clients in structuring commercial real estate and C&I loans.

At BCLP, Jason serves on the firms' Global Leadership Board and is actively involved in the management of the firm. Diversity, equity, and inclusion are at the heart of Jason’s commitment to community service and legal excellence. He previously served as the chair of BCLP’s lawyers of color affinity group, and is currently an active member of the firm’s Global Diversity & Inclusion Advisory Board. He previously held leadership positions with the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA), the Asian American Bar Association of Chicago (AABA), the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD), and the Chicago Committee for Minorities in Large Law Firms. Jason, who was a Chick Evans Scholar (golf caddy scholarship) as a youth, is also a director of the Western Golf Association (WGA) and he previously-served as the chair of its Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Council. He also serves on the Board of Directors of Link Unlimited, an organization that connects high potential African American high school students in the Chicagoland area with mentors, resources, and foundational skills required for success as they advance into, through, and beyond college.



Debjani Desai

Debjani Desai is the General Counsel for the Illinois Office of Comptroller. She leads a team of lawyers in Chicago and Springfield to provide legal counsel on state comptroller mandates, such as ordering payments through the Treasury, managing the state’s fiscal accounts, and conducting audits and reports on the state’s fiscal health. She advises the office on litigation, legislation, finance, operations, compliance, and labor and employment matters. In prior roles, she served as an Administrative Law Judge presiding over medical vendor and Medicaid appeals. She managed state and federal litigation for the state Medicaid agency serving elderly, disabled, and indigent populations. She also advocated for victims as a prosecutor of financial crimes and public corruption. Debjani sits in leadership positions for various bar associations and community organizations that promote diversity, inclusion, and equity. She is President of the South Asian Bar Association of Chicago's Foundation, a SABA Advisory Council member, a Board Member of the Women's Bar Association of Illinois, and a SABA North America Leadership Institute participant. She is a junior board member of the Chicago Lighthouse, serving the blind, visually impaired, disabled and Veteran communities. She has previously served as President of the South Asian Bar Association of Chicago and Board Member of the Asian American Bar Association of Greater Chicago.


Jasmine Hernandez

Associate Judge Jasmine V. Hernandez serves in the First Municipal District of the Circuit Court of Cook County. She hears non-jury civil matters, including pro se small claims. Prior to joining the judiciary, Judge Hernandez litigated labor and employment matters with the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs in its Office of Chief Counsel - Midwest District. In addition, she served as an Assistant State’s Attorney with the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office. In that capacity, she prosecuted felony and misdemeanor offenses committed by both adults and juveniles, as well as focused on Internet sex crimes involving children.

The Judge earned her B.A. from Boston University, a J.D. from University of Illinois College of Law, and a M.S. in Labor Relations from the University of Illinois' School of Labor and Employment Relations. A committed public servant, Judge Hernandez has demonstrated her civic interest for the development of women and minorities in the law when she served as a past president of both the Asian American Bar Association of Greater Chicago and the Filipino American Lawyers Association of Chicago. She is also an active member of the Chicago Bar Association ("CBA") and serves as a veteran member of the CBA’s Editorial Board, which publishes the 35-year-old national legal publication called the Record.


Peter Kim

Peter Kim is Chief Counsel of Litigation and Employment at Jones Lang LaSalle. He provides employment counseling to his business partners and manages labor and employment litigation. Prior to this in-house role, Peter was a partner at Litchfield Cavo LLP focusing on litigation involving employment, aviation, pharmaceutical, and financial industry class action claims. He earned his J.D. from Loyola University Chicago School of Law and his B.S. from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Before entering the field of law, Peter was a financial analyst at the Northern Trust. He is the immediate past president of The Hana Center and current board member. The Hana Center is a 50+ year old NFP organization providing social service to the community as well as social justice advocacy.

Samera Ludwig

Samera Syeda Ludwig is a partner at Lowis & Gellen LLP where she focuses her practice on employment discrimination, immigration and commercial disputes. She is also the Chair of the firm’s Immigration Practice. Samera has an active pro bono practice partnering with the National Immigrant Justice Center assisting individuals in obtaining asylum, U visas and other relief. Samera also sits on the Board of the Chicago High School For The Arts. Samera received her B.A. with Honors from Wesleyan University and her J.D. from Columbia Law School.


Sonni Choi Williams

Sonni Choi Williams was appointed as the City Attorney for the City of Lockport, Illinois in June of 2017. Prior to her appointment, Ms. Williams worked for the City of Peoria for over 17 years. She has over 20 years of experience in municipal law and defending civil state and federal tort and injunction cases including appeals before the state and federal appellate courts and the Illinois Supreme Court.

Ms. Williams was admitted to the practice in 1999; U.S. District Courts: Central District- IL in 2002 and Northern District-IL in 2017; U.S. Court of Appeals, 7th Circuit in 2007; and U.S. Supreme Court in 2013. She received her J.D. from the Northern Illinois University College of Law in 1999 and her B.A. in history from the University of Iowa in 1994. Ms. Williams was appointed by the Illinois Supreme Court to the Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism from 2005 to 2016 and to the Illinois Attorney Registration & Disciplinary Commission (ARDC) Hearing Board currently as a Chair presiding over attorney disciplinary cases. She is a member of the American Bar Association (ABA); National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA); Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA); Will County Bar Association (WCBA); Will County Women’s Bar Association (WCWBA); and Black Bar Association (BBA) of Will County. Ms.Williams served two terms on the ISBA Assembly, two terms as an ISBA Board of Governor (2012-2018), and was elected in April 2021 as the ISBA's 3rd Vice-President, making history as the first woman lawyer of color to be so elected in the position. Through automatic ascension, Ms. Williams will be the President of the largest bar association in Illinois in June of 2024. She currently serves on the boards of Korean-American Bar Association of Chicago (KABA); Asian-American Bar Association Chicago (AABA), Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education (IICLE); Prairie State Legal Services, and Lockport Township High School Foundation.


Asian American Bar Association of

Greater Chicago

321 S Plymouth Court
Chicago, IL 60604


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