Kristi Nelson

Chen Nelson Roberts Ltd. Chicago, Illinois
Shareholder September 2005-Present

Represent clients in complex commercial litigation matters, including contract, employment, unfair competition, immigration, unemployment, fraud, RICO, construction and real estate, and other commercial claims. Represent clients in federal and state courts and before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Provide counseling to clients regarding employment and severance contracts, business disputes, workplace complaints, immigration matters, and corporate compliance issues.

Recent case examples include: Rennell v. Rowe, et al., Case No. 09 C 2193 (N.D. Ill.) (represent defendants in RICO case); Ruttenberg v. Ruttenberg, Case No. 08 C 4898 (N.D. Ill.) (represented defendant in RICO case that was dismissed by court); GD 22 Washington LLC v. Block 37 Office LLC, Case No. 07 CH 6383 (Cir. Ct. Ill.) (represent defendants in civil fraud claim).

Serve as a Panel Member of the Business Conduct Committee (“BCC”) and Probable Cause Committee (“PCC”) for CME Group. The BCC has jurisdiction over Members of CME and CBOT with respect to matters relating to conduct, trading practices, sales practices, trading ethics and market manipulations or other actions that threaten the integrity of the market. The PCC receives and reviews investigation reports from the Market Regulation Department and determines whether a reasonable basis exists for finding that a violation of an Exchange rule may have occurred.

Serve as investigator for Northwest Airlines’ Equal Employment Opportunity Office. Conduct internal workplace investigations of complaints of EEO matters and issue final investigative reports.


United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois  
Law Clerk to the Honorable Judge Suzanne B. Conlon January 2005-July 2005

Consulted with Judge on pending matters, researched legal issues, and drafted legal opinions. Wrote draft opinions regarding employment discrimination, construction of patent claims, exclusions under the Freedom of Information Act, various types of civil rights’ violations, and availability of habeas corpus relief, among many other issues. 


Freeman, Freeman & Salzman, P.C. Chicago, Illinois
Partner December 2003-January 2005
Associate July 1999-December 2003

Represented clients in complex commercial litigation matters, including employment, unfair competition, contract, antitrust, securities, and business torts. Represented clients before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Illinois Department of Human Rights and Illinois Human Rights Commission.

Case examples include:

Defended Chicago Mercantile Exchange in federal discrimination lawsuit alleging race and national origin discrimination. Won summary judgment. Ting v. Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. (N.D. Ill.).

Defended division of General Motors Corporation in federal employment discrimination jury trial alleging gender discrimination. Negotiated successful settlement following hung-jury verdict. Santelli v. Electro-Motive Division of General Motors Corp. (N.D. Ill.).

Won judgment for NCR Corporation in age discrimination arbitration claim.

Defended former corporate executive in alleged securities fraud case. Assisted in negotiation of successful settlement. SEC v. Buntrock, et al. (N.D. Ill.).

Defended rooftop owners surrounding Wrigley Field in unfair competition and misappropriation action brought by Chicago Cubs. Chicago National League Ball Club v. Skybox on Waveland, et al. (N.D. Ill.).

Represented large corporate clients in action against vitamins manufacturers for alleged price-fixing and market allocation in violation of the Sherman Act. In Re Vitamins Antitrust Litigation (D.D.C.). 


Dickinson-Wright Illinois Chicago, Illinois
Associate July 1997-July 1999 (Chicago office closed)

Represented clients in variety of commercial litigation disputes, including employment, contract and tort matters. Defended clients before the Illinois Department of Human Rights and Illinois Human Rights Commission, tried state court breach of contract bench trial, took and defended depositions, interviewed witnesses, reviewed documents and evidence to prepare cases for trial.

Represented General Motors Corporation in proceedings before the Illinois Human Rights Commission, including Barz v. General Motors Corporation (reverse race discrimination) and Spinks v. General Motors Corporation (sexual harassment).

Represented Motorola in various employment litigation matters, including Williams v. Motorola, Inc. (S.D. Fla.) (gender discrimination) and Rowe v. Motorola, Inc. (S.D. Fla.) (race and national origin discrimination). 


Rudnick & Wolfe Chicago, Illinois
Associate September 1995-July 1997

Represented clients in commercial litigation matters; represented client in federal sentencing hearing; researched and wrote appellate briefs.



DePaul University College of Law, Chicago, Illinois
J.D., with honors, 1995
Elected to Order of the Coif
Law Review Member 1994, Editor 1995
Top Ten First Year Law Student Scholarship
Academic Scholarship each semester
Northwest Suburban Bar Association Scholarship
Intern, Homicide Task Force, Cook County Public Defender’s Office (1994)

University of Tulsa, Tulsa, Oklahoma
B.A., cum laude, 1992
Psychology major/Spanish minor

Awards / Membership

Selected by Super Lawyers Magazine as an Illinois Rising Star Attorney 2009 and 2010.

Board Officer (VP Development) and volunteer attorney for Chicago Volunteer Legal Services.

Volunteer attorney for Asylum and Special Immigrant Juvenile programs for National Immigrant Justice Center of Heartland Alliance. Represented clients from Togo, Somalia and Kenya in deportation proceedings and related immigration claims.

Member of Chicago-Lincoln Inn of Court.

Member of Chicago Bar Association and American Bar Association.


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