Attorney General Kwame Raoul on Monday was sworn in as Illinois’ 42nd Attorney General.
Born in Chicago to the son of Haitian immigrants, Raoul brings a lifetime of legal and policy experience, advocacy and public service to the Office of the Attorney General.
Raoul took the oath of office, which was administered by U.S. District Judge Sharon Johnson Coleman, who is also a retired Illinois Appellate Court justice, at the 2019 Inauguration in Springfield. Joining Attorney General Raoul onstage were his children Che and Mizan Raoul, as well as his fiancée Dr. Lisa Moore, and his sisters Dr. Edwidge Raoul and Ninaj Raoul. After being sworn in, Raoul paid tribute to Lisa Madigan’s 16 years of service as Illinois’ attorney general and pledged to continue working to advocate for all Illinois residents.
“Today we make new commitments to raising our voices constructively to protect and promote our greatest assets – our workers, our young people, our natural resources, our seniors, our veterans and our diverse communities,” Raoul said.
Raoul highlighted Illinois’ diverse population and the work of the Attorney General’s Office to block misguided federal policies that violate the rights of Illinoisans. Raoul also announced plans to work with the legislature to pass legislation to create a bureau, set in state statute, within the Attorney General’s Office to protect working people from wage theft, misclassification, workplace discrimination and other violations.
Raoul also emphasized the need for a comprehensive, statewide approach to addressing the opioid and gun violence crises that plague communities throughout Illinois. Raoul called for a statewide approach that emphasizes prevention, addresses gun trafficking and responds to victims of violent crime in a trauma-informed manner.
“The level of violence we experience within our state is unconscionable. There should be no public official anywhere in Illinois who does not take responsibility for doing his or her part to address it,” Raoul said.
Raoul earned his undergraduate degree from DePaul University and his juris doctorate from Chicago-Kent College of Law. He began his legal career as a prosecutor in the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office and subsequently served as a senior staff attorney for the City Colleges of Chicago. In 2004, Raoul was appointed to serve as the state senator representing the 13th legislative district where he chaired various committees and lead negotiations and sponsored some of the most significant pieces of legislation that have become law over the past decade, including eliminating the death penalty. Raoul has also been a partner at two national law firms, serving in the health care and labor and employment practice groups.
Also Monday, Raoul announced the following top staff appointments:
• Chief of Staff Kim Janas has worked in a variety of positions in state government, including as Secretary of the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission. Formerly, she was an Associate Counsel at the Office of Illinois Senate President John J. Cullerton, where she advised the Senate Judiciary and Insurance Committees. Janas was also an Assistant Attorney General in the General Law Bureau under Attorney General Lisa Madigan and a Staff Attorney at the Legislative Reference Bureau. Most recently, Janas was the General Counsel for the Illinois State Medical Society and ISMIE Mutual Insurance Company. She is a graduate of the University of Illinois College of Law and the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.
• Executive Deputy Attorney General Adam Braun was previously Of Counsel at Greenberg Traurig LLP, where he was a member of the Government Law & Policy group since 2012. At Greenberg Traurig he has represented clients before state agencies and the General Assembly. Previously, he served as Deputy Legislative Director and Legislative Counsel to Governor Pat Quinn. Earlier in his career, he worked as Staff Attorney in the Office of the Illinois State Treasurer. Braun chaired the Illinois Holocaust and Genocide Commission from 2011-2014 and was appointed to chair the State Workers Compensation Advisory Board in 2011. He earned a juris doctorate from Loyola University Chicago School of Law and undergraduate degrees from Columbia University and Jewish Theological Seminary.
• Chief Deputy Attorney General Brent Stratton joined the Attorney General’s Office in 2005 and has served as the Chief Deputy Attorney General since 2011, overseeing more than 400 attorneys and providing counsel to the Attorney General and Chief of Staff. He previously served as Assistant Chief Deputy and Deputy Chief of the Public Interest Division. Stratton was in private practice for more than 20 years, including as a partner at Tuite, Stratton & Menaker; Jenner & Block; and McGuireWoods. His private practice included criminal defense, appellate work, and civil and commercial litigation. Stratton has also been a faculty member of trial practice programs for the Chicago Bar Association and the National Association of Attorneys General, and a lecturer for the Short Course for Prosecuting Attorneys and Defense Lawyers in Criminal Cases at Northwestern University School of Law. Stratton obtained a bachelor’s degree in political science and sociology from Whitman College and a juris doctorate from Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law.