the future is now 2024

The Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism is pleased to announce the speaker lineup for its annual Future Is Now: Legal Services conference, which will be held virtually from 12 – 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 18.

Conference attendees will learn to innovate and thrive in their legal practice while creating a culture of civility and professionalism. Four hours of professional responsibility CLE are available for attendees, including one hour of diversity and inclusion CLE and one hour of mental health and substance abuse CLE.

The Future Is Now 2024 speaker lineup

The Future Is Now will feature TED-like talks, fireside chats, and interactive panels from judges and lawyers who are leaders in issues of access to justice, civility in the courtroom, generative AI, mental health and well-being, diversity and inclusion, and more.

Speakers include:

  • Elizabeth M. Rochford, Illinois Supreme Court, served as Associate Judge of the Nineteenth Judicial Circuit before being elected to the Illinois Supreme Court in 2022, and took the lead on developing and initially presiding over a courtroom dedicated to Self-Represented Litigants in family law. She will discuss a lawyer’s obligation to advance access to justice and unique equal justice challenges in Illinois.

  • John Kim, Chair of the Commission on Professionalism, joined the Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism in 2019. He was appointed Vice-Chair in 2022 and Chair in 2024. He currently serves as Associate General Counsel at Edward Jones where he counsels on labor and employment matters. Kim will discuss how lawyers can navigate their professional responsibilities amidst the challenges highlighted throughout the conference.

  • Jazz Hampton, CEO and General Counsel of TurnSignl, will discuss filling justice gaps through innovation and embedding legal services in clients’ daily lives. Hampton’s on-demand TurnSignl app connects drivers to lawyers over video chat to de-escalate interactions during traffic stops and car accidents. TurnSignl has been featured on PBS NewsHour, NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt, and others.

  • Bree Buchanan, Senior Advisor at Krill Strategies, has dedicated more than 25 years to issues of lawyer well-being, including as former Executive Director of the Institute for Well-Being in Law, Chair of the ABA Commission on Lawyers Assistance Programs, and Director of the Texas Lawyers Assistance Program. She will discuss the practicalities of mental health and well-being for lawyers.

  • Patrick R. Krill, Founder of Krill Strategies, is a lawyer, licensed and board-certified addiction counselor, and researcher who has initiated and helped lead many of the legal profession’s efforts to improve mental health over the last decade. He will join Buchanan to discuss the current mental health and well-being issues in the legal profession and strategies to confront and address such challenges.

  • Michelle Silverthorn, Founder and CEO of Inclusion Nation and best-selling author of “Authentic Diversity,” has spoken about diversity and inclusion to law firms, Fortune 500 companies, Hollywood studios, universities, and non-profits. Silverthorn will use real-life scenarios to teach attendees how to be better allies in legal workplaces.

  • Damien Riehl, a lawyer and legal technologist, helps lead the design and development of products at vLex Group integrating AI-backed technologies (e.g., GPT) to improve legal workflows. Riehl will discuss the practical uses of generative AI in legal services, including demonstrating use cases.

  • Trisha M. Rich, Partner and Chair of the Legal Profession Team at Holland & Knight LLP, where she practices litigation, legal ethics, and professional responsibility law. Rich will examine ethical issues and duties that arise from using generative AI in legal practice.

  • Barbara N. Flores, Cook County Circuit Court, served as a Commissioner on the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission before her appointment to the bench and focused in labor and employment work at the federal, state, and local levels. Judge Flores will discuss how lawyers should respond to real-life instances of incivility in the courtroom.

  • Matthew D. Lee, Champaign County Circuit Court, was an attorney and partner focused in criminal defense at Meyer Capel, P.C. in Champaign, Ill., and an Assistant State’s Attorney with the McLean County State’s Attorney’s Office before his appointment to the bench. Judge Lee will join Judge Flores in to discuss common scenarios of incivility that judges experience in their courtrooms, and provide insight into more civil, efficient, and effective behavior.

Register by Friday, March 15, to secure early bird rates. Ticket prices will increase after March 15. Space is limited.

Register here:

If you are an Illinois attorney experiencing a financial hardship that makes it difficult to pay the fee for this CLE program, please email the Commission on Professionalism at In your email, please state your name, ARDC number, that you would like to attend the Future Is Now: Legal Services Conference, and that you are requesting a financial hardship exemption.

Once the Commission receives and reviews the email, you will be contacted with instructions on how to fully participate in the program with the program fee waived. The Commission does not want costs to prevent attendance at its programs.

About the Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism 

The Illinois Supreme Court established the Commission on Professionalism under Supreme Court Rule 799 to promote integrity, professionalism, and civility among the lawyers and judges of Illinois, to foster a commitment to the elimination of bias and divisiveness within the legal and judicial systems, and to ensure those systems provide equitable, effective, and efficient resolution of problems for the people of Illinois.

The Commission achieves this mission through professional responsibility CLE, lawyer-to-lawyer mentoring, legal professionalism programming, educational resources, and more. To learn more, visit and follow us on social media.

Press Contact 

Laura Bagby, Communications Director

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