Amy Campanelli Sworn in for a 6-year Term as Cook County’s Public Defender

Campanelli’s Experience includes 23 Years in the Public Defender’s Office

Amy Campanelli was sworn in as Cook County’s newest Public Defender by Appellate Court Justice Stuart Palmer during a ceremony held this afternoon in the Cook County Board Room.

Campanelli was nominated to serve a six-year term as Public Defender by Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle in March. Her appointment was unanimously approved by the Board of Commissioners during today’s Board Meeting.

Campanelli, a 23-year veteran of the Cook County Public Defender’s Office, most recently served as the Deputy of Suburban Operations for the Law Office, where she managed more than 150 assistant public defenders, supervisors, chiefs, support staff and investigators and oversaw all specialty/therapeutic courts.

Campanelli also has experience in all divisions of the Public Defender’s Office, including Juvenile, Felony Trial, Capital and Homicide Cases. She served as the office liaison between all suburban police departments, the Cook County Department of Corrections and the Sex Offender Management Board for the State of Illinois. She is a mental health specialist and has conducted numerous trainings for attorneys. Campanelli received her undergraduate degree from the University of Illinois and her JD from the Kent College of Law.

Campanelli is only the second woman to serve as Public Defender for Cook County.

“I have dedicated my life to representing the indigent accused and I know that fairness and justice are the most critical components of our criminal justice system,” said Campanelli. “I am humbled to be able to do this great work and am grateful to President Preckwinkle for trusting me to lead this office of well-trained, compassionate, and courageous attorneys, investigators and administrative staff who fight for justice every day.”

“I am grateful to Amy Campanelli for agreeing to take on this critically important position, and to our Board of Commissioners, who unanimously confirmed her appointment today. Throughout her nearly 30 years practicing law, Amy has proven herself to be a relentless advocate for her clients. She is passionate about the work of the Public Defender’s Office, and fully committed to our ongoing efforts to reform the County’s criminal justice system,” said Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle.

Outgoing Public Defender Abishi Cunningham was also recognized for his service as Public Defender with a resolution passed by the Board of Commissioners during today’s meeting.

PHOTO CAPTION: Amy Campanelli is sworn in as Cook County’s newest Public Defender by Appellate Court Justice Stuart Palmer during a ceremony held on April 1, 2015. Campanelli’s husband, Patrick Campanelli, holds the bible.