Attorney Claudia Gallo

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Claudia Gallo
Claudia Gallo
As we’ve mentioned in these pages, year after year, the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin, a highly respected daily newspaper for the Illinois legal community, accepts nominations for its prestigious 40 lawyers under the age of 40 recognition. Every year, our community sees many of its younger attorneys recognized for their accomplishments. One of this year’s individuals recognized, among other Italian Americans, was Claudia Gallo. We highlight her career, adopting, in part, the article about her from the Law Bulletin.

Claudia Gallo, 36, is a highly respected, mature-beyond-her-years attorney in a very difficult area of practice. A partner at the highly respected family law firm of Berger Schatz, she represents clients in family and matrimonial law, including divorce, paternity and custody matters. Her work includes every aspect of representation necessary in family law matters such as contested court proceedings, complex negotiation and financial analysis. Throughout it all, Gallo remains calm and dependable.

It was pointed out in the Law Bulletin article that those who know and have worked with Claudia note that she has always exhibited a steady hand in difficult and tense negotiations, and she has often been the voice of reason when difficult issues or clients are involved. She is not afraid to speak frankly and firmly without being offensive and does not shy away from the types of conflicts that often exist when people are going through a difficult time in their lives.

An example mentioned in the 40/40 article explains, in one case, tensions were running high on both sides of a family due to drastic changes in their economic status. Claudia was able to stay poised and was not willing to take on the persona of her client. Instead, she remained firm but respectful, and was willing to discuss multiple creative solutions to the parties’ difficulties, which ultimately aided greatly in the case being settled by agreement.

Managing partner of her firm, the esteemed Barry Schatz, says of Claudia, “When Berger Schatz first hired Claudia, the firm had high hopes and great expectations for her potential as a lawyer who wanted to do litigation. Claudia has greatly exceeded both our hopes and our expectations. Her intellectual growth is now more publicized as is evidenced by her selection as one of the top young lawyers under 40 years of age.”

One reason why Gallo excels is because she has some of the best analytical skills in her area of practice, a prominent Chicago attorney interviewed for the article said. “Claudia is extremely bright, hardworking and unfailingly ethical. She has an excellent understanding of financial and trust law that most family lawyers lack. Claudia gets to the heart of financial issues in a divorce quickly and shows an insight into how and why the numbers work (or, more importantly, don’t work) in negotiating settlements.” “She also empathizes with her clients in a personal way, making them more comfortable during a very difficult time in their lives.”

An opposing attorney in a highly volatile divorce case was quoted in the article and said, “Gallo is a rare lawyer who combines excellent legal skills with the interpersonal and people skills necessary to provide the absolute best possible representation in these highly-charged cases.” The article went on to say that she is plainly a lawyer who understands what clients involved in challenging family situations need from all perspectives, and one to whom I would not hesitate to turn for these difficult types of matters.

Gallo’s ability to achieve successful results in the difficult and complex field of domestic relations is what makes her an incredible attorney, said another nominating attorney: “Not only does she maintain a high level of professionalism and civility with other attorneys; she also possesses an exceptional ability to manage and successfully resolve a broad range of complicated and contentious issues.”

Claudia’s maternal great-great-grandmother, Josephine D’Allessandra, and great-grandmother, Victoria D’Allessandra Camarata, were born and raised in Genoa, Italy.

Gallo attended Loyola University of Chicago, graduating with honors and a bachelor’s degree cum laude. She earned her J.D. from Illinois Institute of Technology Chicago-Kent College of Law with high honors, Order of the Coif in 1999. In law school, she was a member of the editorial staff of the Chicago-Kent Law Review and served as notes and comments editor. In 2004, Gallo completed the American Bar Association Family Law Trial Advocacy Institute, an intensive trial and litigation program.

Gallo is a member of the Chicago Bar Association (past co-chair, Young Lawyers Section Family Law Committee), Illinois Bar Association, American Bar Association, and Justinian Society of Lawyers. She is married and lives in the western suburbs with her husband, Mike; their children, Bella and Illiana; their yellow lab, Tucker; and her horse, Chief.

Gallo joins many other Italian-American attorneys so recognized over the years, including, among others, the Gamraths (both Celia and Rob), Franco Coladipietro, Gregory Conforti, Anthony Masciopinto, David Bonoma, Colleen Scimeca, Anita Ventrelli, John M. Spesia, Katherine Amari O’Dell, John Storino, Kenneth C. Apicella, Peter M. Spingola, Michael Bonamarte, Christopher Carani, Patrick Salvi and Karie Giganti Valentino.

About Leonard F. Amari

Leonard F. Amari is a founding, co-managing partner of Amari & Locallo, a law firm that focuses exclusively on real estate tax assessment issues. He is a J.D. recipient from The John Marshall Law School, with honors. Amari has been a John Marshall trustee since 2000 and was elected president of the board in 2007. He is past president of the Illinois State Bar Association, a member of the Chicago Bar Association’s State and Local Taxation Committee, and a member and past president of the Justinian Society of Lawyers. He has received numerous honors from many organizations recognizing his service.

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