About Your Blogger

get-attachment.aspxKen Schmetterer is an attorney and a partner in the litigation practice group of DLA Piper.  Previously, Ken worked for six years as an attorney for the City of Chicago Department of Law, working primarily on constitutional and commercial disputes.  He has devoted a substantial amount of time on pro bono matters, with an emphasis on matters impacting at-risk youth.  He currently serves as a director and pro bono counsel for UMOJA Student Development Corporation, based in Chicago.  UMOJA equips young people to succeed in college and confidently claim their future by building a web of dynamic relationships that bring together schools, families and community partners to bridge the gap between the talents and ambitions of low-income youth and the resources they need to thrive.  Ken also serves as a director of the National Juvenile Defender Center,  which supports the juvenile defense bar and seeks to improve access to counsel and quality of representation for children in the justice system.  He authored or co-authored Amicus Briefs submitted to the United States Supreme Court on behalf of the American Bar Association on juvenile justice cases:  Miller v. Alabama,  Jackson v. Hobbs and Graham v. Florida (involving the constitutionality of sentences of life without the possibility of parole for juvenile offenders) and J.D.B. v. North Carolina (involving police questioning of children in school).  He was the co-author and senior editor of “From Juvenile Court to the Classroom:  The Need for Effective Child Advocacy”, part of DLA Piper’s Signature Pro Bono Project.  He was awarded by the Chicago office as pro bono partner of the year in 2004, 2006 and 2010.  He was awarded the Chicago Appleseed Fund for Justice Pillar of Justice.Pro Bono Champion Award in 2013.  His work was recognized by the Chicago Sun Times Judge Marovitz Lend-A-Hand Program in awarding  DLA Piper its Law Firm Partner of the Year Award in 2007.  Ken admittedly knows virtually nothing about blogs and welcomes your help in improving this one.

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