By DENNIS GRUBAUGH
Giving back to the community is important to ensure its future prosperity, says Attorney Jo Anna Pollock. She uses her legal experience to represent individuals and businesses who have been hurt by others.
“We must maintain a commitment to protect the aspects of the community that so often go underappreciated – like the intrinsic value of our children and their environment, and the valuable contributions of entrepreneurs and artists.”
Pollock has been an attorney since 2004 at Simmons Browder Gianaris Angelides & Barnerd LLC in Alton. She works in the complex litigation department, where she devotes her practice to representing clients on a contingency fee basis so that clients need not pay for legal representation out of their own pocket. She said she knew from an early age that she wanted to work in a career where she could “stick up for people who’d been taken advantage of by others.”
Pollock handles all stages of disputes, from litigation avoidance all the way through trial and appeal. Much of her work is done in federal court, and she pursues cases nationwide. She has recovered millions of dollars for clients, successfully protected her clients’ intellectual property by shutting down infringing product lines, and has been recognized by Super Lawyers as one of the top women lawyers in Illinois and as a “Rising Star.”
As the mother of two daughters, ages 8 and 10, Pollock cares deeply about many issues in the community, which she weaves around her role as a lawyer. These include the environment, children, education, and the arts. She says her pro bono efforts have been personally fulfilling. Among cases are those dealing with abused and neglected youngsters.
“There’s no doubt that giving a voice to children in the community has been meaningful to my work,” she said. She also extends some of her pro bono efforts to aspiring artists and photographers by enforcing their copyrights against those that steal their original work.
To help young people prepare for a meaningful career, she created an internship program through the Madison County Bar Association, aimed at introducing high school students to the law.
Pollock earned her juris doctorate from Saint Louis University School of Law and graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor of arts degree in psychology and criminal justice from Lindenwood University in St. Charles, Mo.
Among professional activities, she serves as the chair of the intellectual property group for a national bar association, an appointed member to an Illinois State Bar Association committee on federal civil practice, and as an appointed member of Edwardsville Community School District Citizens Advisory Council. She also serves as an arbitrator through the state court of Illinois. She frequently writes and speaks about legal trends in the community.
With any spare time, she can be found enjoying the outdoors with her family pursuing a variety of interests, from hiking to water sports to skiing.