Judge Kerrie Maloney Laytin was appointed as Circuit Judge for the Circuit Court of Cook County by the Illinois Supreme Court on December 17, 2018, effective January 18, 2019. She is currently assigned to the First Municipal District in the Richard J. Daley Center, hearing municipal matters, including landlord-tenant disputes, criminal traffic court misdemeanors such as driving under the influence, petitions to rescind statutory summary suspensions, and municipal ordinance violations. She has presided over more than 100 bench trials, contested motions, and hearings since assuming the bench. Judge Maloney Laytin was found qualified or recommended by all evaluating bar associations.
Before her judicial appointment, Judge Maloney Laytin acquired 22 years of legal experience in public service, most recently as Senior Counsel and Assistant Corporation Counsel at the City of Chicago Law Department’s Appeals Division. During her more-than-sixteen years at the Appeals Division, she represented the City of Chicago, City employees, and City agencies in over 100 appeals in state and federal appellate courts, including the Illinois Appellate Court, First District; Illinois Supreme Court; U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit; and U.S. Supreme Court. She was responsible for appeals from start to finish, handling settlement negotiations, drafting and filing briefs, and presenting oral arguments. She gained substantive knowledge in multiple legal areas through her work on appeals originating from federal district court and numerous divisions of the Circuit Court of Cook County, such as the Law, Chancery, and Municipal Divisions. She presented 45 oral arguments to state and federal appellate courts, including five to the Illinois Supreme Court.
Judge Maloney Laytin also was a Staff Attorney for the Legal Assistance Foundation of Chicago (now Legal Aid Chicago), where she provided direct legal services to people living in poverty with legal issues involving subsidized housing and eviction, family law, domestic violence, foreclosure, employment discrimination, unemployment insurance, consumer protection, and public benefits. She appeared weekly in the Circuit Court of Cook County for court proceedings, including oral arguments.
Before that, Judge Maloney Laytin served as Trial Attorney in the U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Division, Federal Programs Branch, in Washington, D.C. There, she represented the United States, federal agencies, and government officials in U.S. District Courts around the country, including challenges to the constitutionality of statutes and administrative actions.
Judge Maloney Laytin earned her law degree at Columbia University School of Law, New York, New York, in May 1997, where she served as Writing & Research Editor for the Columbia Law Review and received Harlan Fiske Stone academic honors. She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from New York University, New York, New York, in May 1993, double majoring in English/American Literature and Sociology, with a Women’s Studies Minor, and graduating magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa.
Judge Maloney Laytin is active in numerous bar associations and in her community. She is passionate about youth and education causes. She currently serves as a member of the Board of Trustees for High Jump, an organization providing intensive academic enrichment, support, and counseling to low-income middle school students striving to better their educational opportunities. She volunteers for Columbia Law School, Social Justice Initiatives, as regional advisor for students and graduates interested in Chicago-area government or public interest careers. She is actively involved at her children’s schools and was recently trained by the Illinois Judges Association to present the in-school program, Your Future – Your Choice, about our justice system and how it applies to teenagers. Judge Maloney Laytin also has volunteered with her children for Stand Up For Kids Chicago, an organization providing outreach services to homeless and at-risk youth, and for the Lakeview Pantry. She grew up in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois, where she attended Urbana High School.