Backgrounds of candidates to replace Fitzgerald

AP News
Posted: Jan 01, 2013 1:08 PM

The White House is considering four candidates for the U.S. attorney's job in Chicago to replace for Patrick Fitzgerald, who left to enter private practice. They are:

— Lori Lightfoot would be the first African-American and first woman to hold the job. A partner at the Chicago law office of Mayer Brown, she headed the Chicago Police Department's Office of Professional Standards between 2002 and 2005. From 1996 to 2002, she worked as an assistant U.S. attorney in Chicago. She recently represented Illinois Republicans in their failed challenge of a new congressional map drawn by Democrats.

— Zachary Fardon is a partner at the Chicago law firm Latham Watkins. As a federal prosecutor in Chicago, Fardon helped prosecute former Republican Gov. George Ryan in 2006. In 1999, he took a lead role in convicting a Puerto Rican independence activist for planting bombs at an Army recruiting station. He has also served in the U.S. attorney's office in Nashville, Tenn.

— Jonathan Bunge is a partner at Chicago's Kirkland Ellis law office. He was a government attorney at the U.S. attorney's office in Chicago 1990 to 1999, where he led the prosecution of a Ford Heights, Ill., chief of police and six other officers on corruption and racketeering charges. Bunge served as a special assistant attorney general in the Illinois attorney general's office from 2005 to 2009, where he helped run a public integrity unit.

—Gil Soffer, a partner at the Chicago' Katten Muchin Rosenman law firm, worked as a prosecutor in the U.S. attorney's office in Chicago from 1994 to 2000. He served as an associate deputy attorney general in the U.S. Department of Justice in 2008. Democratic Gov. Patrick Quinn appointed Soffer in 2009 to the Illinois Executive Ethics Commission, formed to promote ethics in the executive branch.


Sources: Sen. Dick Durbin's office, websites of the candidates' law firms, AP archives.