Elaine helps entrepreneurs and artists fulfill their visions and protect their rights. Drawing on her background in graphic arts and tech, Elaine’s practice concentrates in finance, business, entertainment, and intellectual property. Her clients hail from a variety of industries, from small businesses and startups, to tech companies and film. By bringing the creative and financial communities together, Elaine hopes to help build the Chicago independent film industry.
Before embarking upon her legal career, Elaine was a photographer, a multimedia programmer, and an adjunct instructor in graphic arts and information design with a BFA and an MFA in Photography. From the very beginning, she was deeply interested in intellectual property rights.
Elaine subsequently received her J.D from Chicago-Kent College of Law, where she was a fierce competitor in moot court. Elaine also externed in the Northern District of Illinois and the Illinois Appellate Court, First District. On the client side, she assisted pro se litigants at the Chicago Legal Clinic’s Chancery Advice Desk. Elaine also worked to provide access to justice through technology, preparing web content for Illinois Legal Aid Online.
Before entering private practice, Elaine served for seven years as an assistant Attorney General for the State of Illinois in the Civil Appeals Division. She finds her immersion in the world of government regulation invaluable in understanding and serving the needs of her private sector clients.
Elaine provides pro bono legal services through the Circuit Court of Cook County Elder Justice Center, and the Our Lady of Mercy Legal Clinic, which is sponsored by Chicago Volunteer Legal Services. She is also a mentor at 1871, and an occasional guest practice judge for Chicago-Kent’s Moot Court Honor Society.
Elaine has been invited to speak or moderate panels on a variety of law-related topics, including consumer fraud, law practice management, the intersection of film and finance, and crowdfunding.
Education: Chicago-Kent College of Law, JD; Columbia College Chicago, MFA; The Ohio State University, BFA
Admissions: Illinois; California (pending), U.S. Court of Appeals, 3rd Circuit
Professional Memberships: Chicago Bar Association , Illinois State Bar Association, American Bar Association
Community and Activities: Small Business Advocacy Counsel, IFP Chicago, Midwest Independent Film Festival, Options Alliance, 100 Women in Hedge Funds, Holiday Pops Chicago
Chris Williams directs his practice to helping clients with the front end work. He shows Broker-Dealers, Investment Advisors, 3PLs, and entrepreneurs how an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
Chris initially left the world of financial regulations to help the same people he regulated. With a background including the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) and Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), he understands the demands placed on compliance teams and gears his practice towards providing an outside, in-house role.
Along with financial compliance, Chris helps entrepreneurs and small businesses in drafting and filing all the legal documents necessary to start their business, run their companies, and raise capital from investors. Chris has helped small businesses raise funds and expand their products into markets across the country, as well as, sell their company off to international corporations.
Chris’ goal is to take his clients’ business challenges and find viable solutions.
Chris completed his undergraduate degree in English at Marquette University, Milwaukee. Between undergraduate school and law school, Chris was a competitive sailor, racing in Olympic grade regattas with the goal of reaching the London Olympics. After racing, Chris received his law degree from Loyola University Chicago, School of Law.
Chris practices in the following areas:
- Securities Law
- Advisor and Broker-Dealer Compliance
- Policies and Procedures – Anti-Money Laundering, Business Continuity Planning, Know your customer
- Regulatory Compliance – SEC, FINRA, SRO, and Blue Sky
- Regulatory Documentation and Form Filing
- Crowdfunding – Reg A+
Chris now maintains a separate law practice focusing on regulatory compliance in addition to serving as Of Counsel to The Lens Legal Group.
Education: Loyola University Chicago School of Law, JD ; Marquette University, BA
Professional memberships: Chicago Bar Association, Illinois State Bar Association