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Welcome to The Chicago Bar Association’s @theBar, a podcast where young and young-ish lawyers have interesting and unscripted conversations with their guests about legal news, events, topics, stories and whatever else strikes our fancy.
More Episodes
Mar 29, 2024

A Discussion with Cary Donham – West Point’s First and Only Conscientious Objector

In this episode, Jonathan Amarilio interviews Cary Donham about his experience as the United States Military Academy at West Point’s first and only conscientious objector, as chronicled in his recent memoir, “A...

Jan 10, 2024

Remembering U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor

Michael Scodro, former clerk to the Honorable Sandra Day O’Connor and current partner with the law firm of Mayer Brown, joins Jon Amarilio and Maggie Mendenhall Casey to discuss Justice O’Connor’s career,...

Nov 20, 2023

The #FreeBritney Edition (Rebroadcast)

The @theBar podcast is taking a holiday break in November and will return in December with new content. This episode, previously released in July 2021, discusses the conservatorship of Britney Spears, providing...

Oct 25, 2023

The Northwestern University Hazing Scandal Explained

Jon Amarilio and Maggie Mendenhall Casey are joined by attorney Patrick Salvi II to discuss the Northwestern University hazing scandal that has made national headlines in recent months. Salvi represents several former...

Sep 27, 2023

The World’s Most Famous Doll (Who Shall Remain Nameless for Legal Reasons) Goes to Court to Protect Her Brand

With the success of Margot Robbie and Greta Gerwig’s blockbuster movie, we are once again living in a doll’s world. Toymaker Mattel has long had a reputation for aggressively defending its Barbie-related...

Aug 25, 2023

The Right to Repair Your Stuff with Gay Gordon-Byrne

Nearly every person has had the frustrating experience of being told that an appliance or piece of electronic equipment cannot be repaired.  Why are we told that a laptop cannot be repaired...

Jun 22, 2023

Not Your Average Wellness Podcast for Lawyers

As the saying goes, if you don’t make time for your health now, you’ll be forced to make time for your health problems later. In this episode, hosts Jonathan Amarilio and Trisha...

May 17, 2023

Defending Against Domestic Violent Extremism: A Discussion with Brian Michael Jenkins

In this episode, host Jonathan Amarilio speaks with one of the world’s leading authorities on terrorism and the man famously known for predicting 9/11, Brian Michael Jenkins of the RAND Corporation. They...

Apr 3, 2023

Celebrating 5 Years of Podcasting

This month marks 5 years CBA’s @theBar bringing you interesting and unscripted conversations about legal news, events, topics, stories and whatever else strikes our fancy.  Celebrate this milestone with us by delving...

Feb 28, 2023

A Closer Look at the U.S.’ First Reparations Program with Evanston’s Mayor Daniel Biss

Should reparations be given, and if so, who should get reparations and what form should they take? These are questions the U.S. has been pondering since General Sherman made the largely unanswered...

Feb 10, 2023

The Tylenol Murders: Discussing New Evidence in the Unsolved Case

In fall 1982, seven people in the Chicagoland area died after taking cyanide-laced Tylenol capsules, and no one knew why or who might be next. Law enforcement quickly determined that the poisoned...

Jan 11, 2023

Cheri Bustos and Gretchen Carlson: A Discussion About Legal Reforms for Sexual Assault and Harassment Victims

Recently retired Congresswoman Cheri Bustos (IL-17) and journalist and television personality, Gretchen Carlson, join our hosts Jonathan Amarilio and Maggie Mendenhall Casey for discussion about the Ending Forced Arbitration of Sexual Assault...

Nov 30, 2022

The Killer Clown Edition: The Prosecution of John Wayne Gacy (Rebroadcast)

@theBar wishes to honor the career of retired Cook County judge William J. “Bill” Kunkle Jr. after his recent passing by re-broadcasting our interview with him about his experience as the chief...

Nov 17, 2022

Starved Rock Murders: The Case for Chester Weger’s Innocence

In March 1960, Illinois Starved Rock State Park became the site of the brutal murder and possible sexual assault of three middle-aged women who were visiting the park from nearby Chicago. Authorities...

Oct 19, 2022

Legal Ghost Stories with Author-Historian Adam Selzer

In this special Halloween episode, @theBar gets into the spooky spirit with author-historian, podcaster and tour guide Adam Selzer of Mysterious Chicago. Adam regales hosts Trisha Rich and Maggie Mendenhall Casey with...

Sep 15, 2022

Rethinking Self-Defense with Markus Funk

In this edition, decorated former federal prosecutor and partner at Perkins Coie, Markus Funk, joins the podcast to discuss his book, Rethinking Self-Defence: The ‘Ancient Right’s’ Rationale Disentangled, with hosts Jonathan Amarilio...

Aug 17, 2022

Mass Shooting in Highland Park: An Interview with Mayor Nancy Rotering and Corporation Counsel Steve Elrod

On the morning of July 4, 2022, thousands of people were gathered to watch the annual Independence Day Parade in the suburban community of Highland Park, Illinois, when a gunman opened fire...

Jul 14, 2022

Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization: A Conversation with Michelle Wetzel General Counsel of Planned Parenthood of Illinois

On June 24, 2022, the U.S. Supreme Court decided the landmark case of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which held that the Constitution of the United States does not confer the...

Jun 29, 2022

The Scarlet A Edition (Rebroadcast)

This episode was previously recorded in 2019 before the Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization overturning Roe v. Wade, but the conversation is just as relevant today. In...

May 26, 2022

War in Ukraine: Colonel Yevgeny “Eugene” Vindman Discusses the Law of War

In this edition, host Jonathan Amarilio and co-host Trisha Rich are joined by Colonel Yevgeny “Eugene” Vindman, who served as a deputy legal advisor on the National Security Council (NSC) and came...

May 18, 2022

War in Ukraine: Immigration Attorney Andy Semotiuk Discusses the Humanitarian Crisis

In this edition, host Trisha Rich and co-host Jennifer Byrne are joined by immigration attorney, author, Forbes contributor, and former UN correspondent, Andy Semotiuk, to discuss the history of the conflict between...

Apr 20, 2022

The Science of Legal Writing: An Interview with Judge Robert Bacharach of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit

In this edition, host Jonathan Amarilio and co-host Margaret Mendenhall Casey are joined by Judge Robert Bacharach of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit to discuss his recent book...

Mar 30, 2022

@theBar from the Mailbag

Listen to the first-ever mailbag episode of CBA’s @theBar! Host Jonathan Amarilio is joined by co-hosts Trisha Rich, Maggie Mendenhall Casey and Jennifer Byrne for a conversation that is even more unscripted than...

Feb 17, 2022

The Jussie Smollett Case: An Interview with Special Prosecutor Dan Webb

Dan Webb discusses his successful prosecution of actor Jussie Smollett.

Jan 12, 2022

An Interview with Amanda Knox: Beyond Did She or Didn’t She

Amanda Knox sheds light on the issues of wrongful conviction and criminal justice reform.

Dec 15, 2021

The Chicago Mafia Edition: Former Federal Prosecutor Markus Funk discusses the trial that put a hit on the Chicago Outfit

Markus Funk joins to discuss the US government's 2005 indictment of the Chicago mafia.

Dec 8, 2021

Teaser: The Chicago Mafia Trial, Mailbag and Season 4 Kick-off

What's on tap @theBar.

Oct 21, 2021

The ‘Dr. Death’ Edition: A Conversation with Dallas D.A. Michelle Shughart about the crimes and prosecution of Christopher Duntsch

Take a look behind-the-scenes look at the criminal prosecution of the man known as "Dr. Death", Christopher Duntsch.

Sep 23, 2021

The Law School Deans Roundtable Edition

Dean Hari Osofsky of Northwestern Pritzker School of Law and Dean Jennifer Rosato Perea of DePaul University College of Law join for a roundtable discussion about the current state of legal education.

Aug 25, 2021

The Flint Water Crisis Edition: A Conversation with Lead Plaintiffs’ Attorney Corey Stern

Jonathan Amarilio is joined by Corey Stern, lead counsel for the plaintiffs injured in the Flint, Michigan water crisis. Corey discusses the origins of the water crisis, the role citizen advocates played...

Jul 29, 2021

The #FreeBritney Edition

California probate attorney Justin Gold to discusses the conservatorship of Britney Spears.

Jun 30, 2021

The Art of Shameless Self-Promotion Edition

In this edition, guest host Trisha Rich and co-host Jennifer Byrne are joined by public relations and legal marketing expert Debra Pickett of Page 2 Communications for a discussion about how lawyers...

May 26, 2021

The Dark Waters Edition: A Discussion with Environmental Attorney Rob Bilott

Rob Bilott sits down with host Jonathan Amarilio to discuss his struggle on behalf of tens of thousands of poisoned Ohio and West Virginia residents and his ongoing efforts to stop the...

Apr 15, 2021

The Speaking of Speakers Edition: A Discussion with Illinois’ New House Speaker Emanuel “Chris” Welch

New Speaker of the Illinois House of Representatives Emanuel "Chris" Welch became the first Black lawmaker to hold the position. He joins the show to talk about his story, goals and plans...

Mar 18, 2021

The Trial of the Chicago 7 Edition: Part 3 – Defendant John Froines

Part 3 of The Trial of the Chicago 7, host Jonathan Amarilio and co-host Jennifer Byrne continue the conversation about the landmark trial with John Froines, one of the last two living...

Mar 18, 2021

The Trial of the Chicago 7 Edition: Part 2 – Prosecutor Dick Schultz (Cont.)

Part 2 of The Trial of the Chicago 7, host Jonathan Amarilio continues his conversation about the landmark trial with Dick Schultz who represented the United States Government in the prosecution of...

Mar 18, 2021

The Trial of the Chicago 7 Edition: Part 1 – Prosecutor Dick Schultz

Part 1 of The Trial of the Chicago 7, host Jonathan Amarilio discusses the landmark trial with Dick Schultz who represented the United States Government in the prosecution of the Chicago 7.

Feb 18, 2021

The Smartmatic v. Fox News Edition

Erik Connolly discusses his $2.7 billion defamation lawsuit against Fox News, Rudy Giuliani, Sydney Powell and others, on behalf of his client, Smartmatic.

Dec 16, 2020

Teaser: The Trial of the Chicago 7

Take a sneak peak of what's to come in our next episode.

Oct 23, 2020

The Voting Rights Edition

John Cusick joins the show to discuss the current state of voting rights.

Sep 2, 2020

The George Floyd Edition

Benjamin Crump and Antonio Romanucci, the attorneys representing Floyd’s estate, speak about the civil rights lawsuit brought against the City of Minneapolis and the police officers accused of wrongfully taking Floyd’s life.

Aug 11, 2020

The Justice in Policing Act of 2020: A Discussion with Senator Dick Durbin

Senator Durbin discusses the Act, its core goals, and how the Act seeks to achieve meaningful policing reform.

May 20, 2020

The Constitutionality of Covid Stay-At-Home Orders Edition

Ann Lousin discusses the protesting of Illinois’ stay-at-home order and whether they have a case.

Apr 24, 2020

The Criminal Courts Adapt to COVID-19 Edition: How the Pandemic Is Impacting the Rights of the Accused

Amy Campanelli talks about the constitutional issues and the impact on the rights of the accused as criminal courts adapt to the logistical challenges brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Apr 8, 2020

The Overcoming Loneliness Edition

J.W. Freiberg talks about loneliness as a problem in our society and how we can overcome this isolation, social distancing and quarantine during the coronavirus pandemic.

Mar 4, 2020

The Represent Edition: Kate Black Explains How Women Can Run for Office and Change the World

Kate Black discusses why it's important to eliminate barriers that may stop women from running for office by demystifying the process and how her book provides an accessible step-by-step guide that any...

Feb 12, 2020

The Killer Clown Edition: The Prosecution of John Wayne Gacy (Rebroadcast)

William “Bill” Kunkle, the lead prosecutor, gives our listeners a rare, behind-the-scenes look at the crimes and prosecution of the man dubbed the “The Killer Clown”.

Jan 29, 2020

The Revolution Edition: A Live-Audience Conversation with Josh Deth, Founder of Revolution Brewing

Josh Deth talks about his journey from brewing beer in his garage to founding one of the most successful independent breweries in the United States.

Dec 5, 2019

The Murder of Innocence Edition: A Look Back on the Laurie Dann School Shooting with Eric Zorn

Eric Zorn discusses the Laurie Dann School shooting, what’s changed, what hasn’t changed, and what we can learn from the case that could help us stop the violence and restore peace in...

Nov 6, 2019

The Angel of Death Row Edition

Andrea Lyon talks about the politics, sociology and personal stories behind the death penalty in America.

Your Hosts
Jonathan Amarilio

Jon Amarilio is a partner at Taft Stettinius & Hollister in Chicago, where he co-chairs Taft’s appellate group...

Jennifer Byrne

Jennifer Byrne is the Director of Continuing Legal Education for The Chicago Bar Association, for which she implements...

Trisha Rich

Trisha Rich is a partner in Holland & Knight’s Chicago office, where she practices commercial litigation and...

Maggie Mendenhall Casey

Maggie Mendenhall Casey is a trial attorney at the City of Chicago Department of Law. She represents the...


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