2014 – Mary Jo Quinn
Mary Jo Quinn brings a unique perspective to the corporate law arena in her work at Allstate, having been a special education teacher for seven years before attending law school. Today, Mary Jo continues to advocate for some of the most vulnerable in our community through her work with Cabrini Green Legal Aid (CGLA), where she works to ensure that people with criminal records have the second chances they deserve. Mary Jo came to Allstate from Jones Day in 1996 and currently heads Allstate’s Securities Team of lawyers. She also leads their law department’s mentoring program and fosters many of her own mentor relationships both inside and outside of Allstate.
In 2009, Mary Jo introduced Allstate’s law department to CGLA with the simple invitation to “come down to the Expungement Help Desk for half a day to see what it’s like.” Since then, nearly 60 volunteers from Allstate have given over 1,000 hours of pro bono services to CGLA clients, including over 100 hours from Mary Jo herself. Mary Jo has continued her leadership role, spearheading multiple training programs for Allstate attorneys on issues relating to criminal records, resulting in more than 75 attorneys getting involved. Due to Mary Jo’s leadership, Allstate is currently the only corporate law department handling clemency petitions, an important expansion of corporate pro bono.
While a member of CGLA’s advisory board, Mary Jo also encouraged other corporations to work with CGLA. Her leadership helped lead Walgreens to make CGLA one of its preferred pro bono organizations. In 2011, Mary Jo co-chaired CGLA’s annual benefit, which raised $525,000 for the organization. In the words of one of her nominators, “Mary Jo Quinn has set a new standard for pro bono contributions in the corporate sector, inspiring active support from hundreds of colleagues—and advancing the work of CGLA to benefit the people who need us most.”