Justinians honosr Garanzini, Emerson

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Corporate leader Lisa Emerson and Loyola administrator Rev. Michael J. Garanzini shared the spotlight when the Justinian Society of Lawyers hosted its annual installation and awards dinner on Sept. 16 at the Palmer House Hilton. (708-338-0760)

The following officers were formally installed at the event: Jessica DePinto (president), Frank A. Sommario (first vice president), Michael Bonamarte (second vice president), Vincent Vidmer (third vice president), Natalie M. Petric (treasurer) and Judge Regina A. Scannicchio (secretary).
1 GaranziniRev. Michael J. Garanzini, S.J.
Award of Excellence

The Reverend Michael J. Garanzini, S.J., was the 23rd President of Loyola University Chicago from June 2001 until June 2015. In July 2015, he transitioned into his new role at Loyola as Chancellor. A seasoned university administrator, tenured professor, author and scholar, Father Garanzini has spent the majority of his career working in higher education.

In June 2011, Father Garanzini was appointed by Adolfo Nicolás, S.J., the superior general of the Society of Jesus, to serve as the Secretary for Higher Education for the Society of Jesus. In this new role, which officially began on September 1, 2011, and is in addition to his continued service as president and CEO of Loyola, Father Garanzini assists the Father General on a part-time basis, coordinating and championing Jesuit higher-education issues around the world.

Father Garanzini’s solid academic credentials combine with a rare blend of experience in teaching, research, service and administrative leadership at some of the nation’s leading Jesuit institutions of higher learning, including Georgetown, Fordham, Saint Louis and Rockhurst universities, as well as Gregorian University in Rome.

Prior to becoming President of Loyola, Father Garanzini was a full professor of psychology at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., where he had been special assistant to the president for two years. Before joining Georgetown, Father Garanzini was a visiting professor at Fordham University in New York.
EmersonLisa Emerson
Outstanding Leadership Award

Lisa Emerson is the retired Vice President of Global Total Compensation at McDonald’s Corporation and a recognized leader in the field of compensation and benefits. Recognized for her strong leadership, business acumen and expertise in the field of human resources, Lisa is renowned for her innovative approach to creating programs that link business strategy, culture and rewards.

As Vice President of Global Total Compensation, Lisa was responsible for all aspects of McDonald’s global compensation and benefits strategy and execution, redesigning the program to align with the company’s global business strategy. This included executive and broad-based compensation, expatriate policy and administration, stock plan policy and administration, health and welfare plans, and retirement benefits. Lisa’s exceptional performance record reflects a responsible approach to risk taking, a deep commitment to people and values, and the keen ability to lead complex, corporate-wide change.

Lisa was a member of McDonald’s global human resources leadership team and served as an executive sponsor on McDonald’s Woman’s Leadership Network, OakBrook chapter. Lisa is also a member of the board of directors of Hephzibah Children’s Association, an award-winning Oak Park social service agency that offers child welfare and family services, foster care and adoption programs, and short- and long-term group homes for children traumatized by neglect and abuse.

Jessica T. DePinto
2015 Justinian President

On May 14, 2015, Jessica T. DePinto was sworn in as the 94th president of the Justinian Society of Lawyers. Jessica has more than 15 years of experience in federal regulatory compliance and business law, guiding Fortune 500 companies in their global trade regulatory compliance objectives.

While a manager in Deloitte Tax LLP Customs and Global Trade practice group, she conducted in-depth assessments of clients’ policies and procedures. She has advised audit committees on companies’ compliance risks and advised trade departments on risk management strategies to improve internal controls and meet compliance objectives.

With a deep technical knowledge of global trade regulations, Jessica has been responsible for designing and delivering best practices compliance training programs for clients in diverse and highly regulated sectors, including textiles, apparel and footwear.

She edited and managed Deloitte Tax Customs and Global Trade Eminence Publication, “The Link Between Transfer Pricing & Customs Valuation,” one of the most authoritative guides of its kind, compiling essential information regarding import valuation and implications of related party pricing in more than 50 countries, spanning six continents.

While in private practice with Chicago-based and Midwestern firms, she successfully advocated clients’ positions before federal regulatory agencies and represented clients in penalty actions before U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Department of Homeland Security.

Jessica has also advocated clients’ positions before the U.S. Department of Commerce, International Trade Administration. She served as chair of practice committees for the Chicago and Illinois State Bar Associations and has published on issues pertaining to import regulations.

With a keen interest in education, Jessica has designed and delivered continuing legal education courses for the Chicago Bar Association and the International Trade Club of Chicago. Jessica chaired the Women in Leadership Advisory Board, The School of Continuing and Professional Studies, Loyola University of Chicago, where she is currently adjunct faculty.

Aware of the challenges facing the 21st century lawyer, she is collaborating with IIT Chicago-Kent’s Institute for Law and the Humanities to develop and deliver courses on mindfulness and resilience.

She is a proud alumna of the University of Wisconsin at Madison, where she graduated with honors. She graduated from IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law where she completed the program in International and Comparative Law. Jessica was awarded a scholarship to complete her Master of Arts in Italian Language and Literature from Indiana University-Bloomington and studied at the Universitá di Bologna.

In 2012 Jessica was named one of the “100 Women to Watch” by Today’s Chicago Woman magazine. An unapologetic bibliophile, she volunteers at the Pilsen branch of Open Books Ltd., a non-profit that operates bookstores that fund literacy programs in Chicago.

She lives in Chicago with her husband, Roberto Morrone, and is the most grateful daughter of her wonderful parents, Rosemarie and Michael DePinto.

Frank A. Sommario
1st Vice President

Frank A. Sommario is a Partner at Romanucci & Blandin in Chicago, where he practices as a petitioner’s workers’ compensation lawyer. Admitted to the Bar in Illinois, Minnesota and Washington, D.C., he received his Juris Doctor from DePaul University College of Law. He is a Certified Public Accountant who received his Bachelor’s Degree from DePaul. A Silver Fellow of the Illinois Bar Foundation, he is a past President of the Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Association and a past member of the ISBA Board of Governors. Named an Illinois Rising Star by Super Lawyers annually since 2010, Frank is a 2012 recipient of The Law Bulletin’s 40 Under 40 Award.

Michael Bonamarte
2nd Vice President

Michael Bonamarte is a Partner and trial attorney at Levin & Perconti in Chicago. A 2005 graduate of The John Marshall Law School, at age 31 he was the youngest recipient in 2010 of The Law Bulletin’s 40 Under 40 Award. In 2011, he received the William F. Harte Amicus Volunteer Award presented by the Illinois Trial Lawyers Association. Michael was named a Super Lawyers Rising Star in 2011 and 2012. His areas of practice include plaintiff’s personal injury, nursing home neglect and abuse, and medical malpractice. He is a member of the ISBA Assembly and a former member of the ISBA YLD Council.

Vincent R. Vidmer
3rd Vice President

Attorney Vincent R. Vidmer practices in Chicago, handling various legal matters, including general civil litigation, real estate transactions, estate planning and general legal drafting. A major component of Vincent’s practice resides with the Liquor and Allied Worker’s Union, assisting in collective bargaining, fringe benefits, pension and 401(K) plan administration, grievances and arbitrations, and general administration. Vincent has been recognized multiple times by Illinois Super Lawyers as a “Rising Star.” Vincent is an active member of the ISBA and West Loop Community Organization among other groups. He resides in the Fulton River District of Chicago with his lovely wife, Lauren.

Natalie M. Petric

Natalie M. Petric serves as Manager, Enforcement Counsel in the Legal and Market Regulation Department of CME Group. She is responsible for litigating cases involving market participants before the exchange’s disciplinary committees. Prior to joining CME Group, Natalie worked as a civil defense trial attorney and prosecutor in the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office. Natalie graduated cum laude from Tufts University with a bachelor’s degree in international relations. She received her Juris Doctor from DePaul University College of Law. She is married, has two young daughters, and is the proud granddaughter of past Justinian President Anthony J. Fornelli.

Regina A. Scannicchio

Cook County Circuit Court Judge Regina A. Scannicchio sits in the Domestic Relations Division. Prior to taking the bench in 2011, her practice focused in on the area of family law. She is a graduate of The John Marshall Law School and DePaul University. Regina served as the President of The John Marshall Alumni Association in 2013-14 and is currently the Chairperson of the Board of Directors of The Shrine of Our Lady of Pompeii. Regina received the Distinguished Service Award from The John Marshall Law School Alumni Association, the Spirit of John Marshall Award from the Board of Trustees and the DaVinci Award for Community Service from the Order Sons of Italy.


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Fra Noi produces a magazine and website that serve the Chicago-area Italian-American community. Our magazine offers our readers a monthly feast of news and views, culture and entertainment that keeps our diverse and widely scattered readers in touch with each other and their heritage. Our website offers a dizzying array of information drawn from every corner of the local community.

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