Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of HR0116
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Full Text of HR0116  98th General Assembly




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2    WHEREAS, The members of the Illinois House of
3Representatives were saddened to learn of the death of former
4Illinois Supreme Court Justice Mary Ann McMorrow, who died on
5February 23, 2013; and
6    WHEREAS, Justice McMorrow was born Mary Ann Grohwin on
7January 16, 1930, in Chicago; she grew up in the St. Stanislaus
8Kostka Parish on the northwest side and later graduated from
9Immaculata High School and Rosary College, now Dominican
10University; and
11    WHEREAS, Justice McMorrow, a pioneer for women in law,
12received her law degree in 1953 from Loyola University School
13of Law, where she was the only woman in her graduating class,
14and class president and associate editor of the law review; she
15began her career as a researcher for Loyola University and then
16worked for the law firm of Riordan & Linklater; she was later
17appointed Assistant State's Attorney in Cook County, and in
181976 was elected judge of the Circuit Court of Cook County; in
191985, the Illinois Supreme Court named Mary Ann McMorrow to the
20Appellate Court, a position to which she won election in 1986
21and served as the first woman chair of the Executive Committee;



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1    WHEREAS, Though Justice McMorrow broke down long-held
2gender barriers throughout her career and served as a mentor to
3many women in the legal profession, she earned the respect and
4admiration of all who knew her; she became the first woman to
5prosecute felony cases in Cook County while serving as
6Assistant State's Attorney; in 1992, she became the first woman
7to serve on the Illinois Supreme Court in its then 173-year
8history, and in 2002, she became the first woman to serve as
9Chief Justice; she retired from the bench in 2006; and
10    WHEREAS, Justice McMorrow fought for fairness and justice
11throughout her career; she advocated for legal aid to help low
12income residents, called on lawyers to serve the poor, and
13urged those in the legal profession to offer their talents in
14pro bono services; in early 2011, she joined a long list of
15advocates, including a number of former U.S. Attorneys, in
16urging Governor Pat Quinn to sign legislation abolishing the
17death penalty; in her 14-year tenure on the Illinois Supreme
18Court, she was involved in landmark cases and decisions,
19including the Baby Richard case, in which she urged a hearing
20on the best interests of the child, and limits on jury awards;
21she wrote for the Supreme Court 225 majority opinions and an
22additional 85 concurring and dissenting opinions; and
23    WHEREAS, Justice McMorrow's long and distinguished career
24was filled with many honors and achievements; she was inducted



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1as a Laureate of the Academy of Illinois Lawyers in 2009; among
2her numerous awards, she received the Medal of Excellence Award
3from the Loyola University School of Law Alumni Association in
41991, The Fellows of the Illinois Bar Foundation Award for
5Distinguished Service to Law and Society in 1996, Chicago
6Lawyer Magazine's Person of the Year in 2003, the American Bar
7Association's Margaret Brent Award in 2005, the Women's Bar
8Association of Illinois' Myra Bradwell Woman of Achievement
9Award, and three honorary degrees; she served as a master
10bencher of the American Inns of Court and member of the
11American Judicature Society, the National Association of Women
12Judges, and the Board of Directors of the Illinois Judges'
13Association; and
14    WHEREAS, Justice McMorrow was preceded in death by her
15loving husband of 24 years, the late Emmett J. McMorrow; she is
16survived by their daughter, Mary Ann McMorrow, and her sister,
17Frances Grohwin; therefore, be it
20we mourn, along with her family and friends, the passing of
21Justice Mary Ann McMorrow; and be it further
22    RESOLVED, That a suitable copy of this resolution be
23presented to the family of Justice McMorrow as a symbol of our



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1deep sympathies and great esteem.