I have had the good fortune of knowing Scott Frankel for close to 30 years. I cannot imagine a more highly qualified candidate than Scott to serve the people of the state of Illinois as judge of the 11th Subcircuit of Cook County.
I met Scott when we both worked in a very busy courtroom in Englewood. It was a tough place to work in a high-crime area. He was a young public defender at the time and I was a young assistant state’s attorney. We often tried cases against each other and I could see even then that he was passionate about the law, cared deeply about his clients, and, as he demonstrated on a daily basis, was extremely intelligent. He had left a high-powered law firm to do something that he felt mattered more — serving the citizenry.
Scott would eventually move on to try countless jury trials at the Criminal Courts Building at 26th and California. He then built a highly successful law practice, trying both criminal and civil cases throughout the state and in federal court. He has litigated every type of case and has even represented several defendants facing the death penalty, a highly specialized area of the law. He has argued numerous appeals before the 7th Circuit and before the Illinois appellate court. His is a reputation beyond reproach.
Since those early days, I also went into private practice focusing on state and federal criminal defense work. I have had the privilege of trying cases with him at 26th and California and I have worked with him on cases at the Dirksen Federal Building. Very few lawyers have tried as many complex cases as he has in as many diverse areas of the law. I never saw him lose his cool, his poise or his professional manner, no matter how challenging the case. Very few lawyers know the feeling of representing an individual whose life is in your hands.
As a result, Scott not only understands the intricacies and nuances of how the criminal justice system works but also understands the stakes involved. He will be a tough judge, but also fair and compassionate. He will take the time to review each case on the merits and make individualized decisions tailored to the facts.
Scott Frankel is the type of person the citizens of Illinois need on the bench. It’s not about the title or the prestige. He really is someone who cares.