The executive board members of the Illinois Chapter of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys are the leaders in the field of elder law. Our executive board consists of prominent attorneys who are committed to this area of law as evidenced by the large number of articles, publications, and seminars authored by these individuals. These attorneys devote hours and hours of time to our organization and to furthering the practice of elder law in compliance with the NAELA code of ethics.
All of our executive board members continue their education through the attendance and participation in local, State, and National conferences, where they learn, introduce, present, and share the most sophisticated legal strategies and techniques available in the field of elder law.
We are truly honored to each of these esteemed attorneys as part of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys Executive Board, and our proud to introduce these individuals to you:
MELISSA JOHNSON | PRESIDENT
Melissa Johnson is a partner at Generation Law where she focuses her practice on contested guardianships, decedents estates and trust contests. She is the current president of the Illinois chapter of NAELA as well as a member of the ISBA Elder Law Council. Most importantly, Melissa is married with four small children and in her spare time loves to read, listen to true crime podcasts, and attend concerts.
MALLORY MORENO| PRESIDENT ELECT
Mallory Moreno is a Principal and Chuhak & Tecson, P.C. and devotes her practice to her passion of advocating on behalf of the aging population and individuals with disabilities, many of whom are unable to speak for themselves. Her extensive experience helping clients find a sense of peace during their moments of crisis, such as losing a loved one, being faced with unforeseen health problems, experiencing family strife or planning for expensive long-term care, are what Mallory finds most rewarding about the practice of law.
Mallory’s practice focuses in adult guardianships, both contested and non-contested, estate and trust administration and litigation, including financial exploitation, will and trust contests, fiduciary disputes, issues of capacity, powers of attorneys, undue influence, financial exploitation, citations and fraud. Clients value Mallory’s compassionate, pragmatic and collaborative approach to resolving issues while she remains conscientious of their unique needs, tailoring plans accordingly. A large portion of her practice is also dedicated to long-term care planning, Medicaid, Medicaid appeals, estate planning, special needs planning and disability law.
Mallory is a Certified Elder Law Attorney (CELA), which is an exclusive honor bestowed to a select group of attorneys by the National Elder Law Foundation. As of 2021, there are only 17 CELAs in Illinois providing creative solutions for clients who are faced with elder law issues.
Mallory serves as President-Elect for the Illinois Chapter of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (IL NAELA), an organization that is closely involved in advancing legislation on behalf of elder law attorneys and their clients, which ensures that she stays abreast of the latest legislative updates in this space. She also chairs many of IL NAELA’s committees. Mallory is also a reoccurring faculty speaker for Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education (IICLE) as well as other organizations. In addition, Mallory serves as co-chair of the young lawyers’ section of the Chicago Bar Association’s Serving our Seniors Committee.
For the past five years, Mallory was named an Emerging Lawyer from Leading Lawyers, which is an honor awarded to less than 2% of all lawyers in Illinois. Super Lawyers named her a Rising Star in 2021 and 2022, and she was given the Distinguished Lawyer Designation from the Expert Network, a leading invitation-only network for professionals who have contributed meaningfully to their field, who can demonstrate a distinct perspective on the future of their profession and are considered thought leaders.
Community service plays an important role in Mallory’s life. Mallory, along with a family member who has disabilities, volunteers for the Special Olympics. She believes that her personal experiences involving the challenging issues clients with disabilities face enhance her ability to provide swift and thorough resolutions to legal issues. She also volunteers and is a board member of a not for profit called W.A.L.L.S., Inc. (Working Adults Learning Lifelong Skills), which is a life skills center for adults with disabilities.
In her free time, Mallory and her family enjoy outings at the zoo, traveling (when it’s safe), and visiting grandparents, family and friends. Other activities people may find her engaging in include reading, cooking and crafts.
PAIGE FOX |VICE PRESIDENT
Paige N. Fox brings compassion, understanding and knowledge to her practice of elder law. She takes great pleasure in helping clients and their family members as they cope with complex and unfamiliar situations that are often emotionally overwhelming and mentally tolling. As an associate in the Estate Planning & Asset Protection group, Paige finds that helping clients and their families find a course of action with which they are comfortable and advising them on how to achieve their long-term goals in order to feel secure as they age is the most rewarding part of her practice of law.
Through her work within the Estate & Trust Administration & Litigation group, Paige assists clients with estate planning, special needs planning, asset preservation and Medicaid planning, trust administration, probate estates, adult guardianship, negotiations with long-term care facilities, contract review and overall assistance with navigating difficulties that may come with aging. She considers herself an advocate for her clients, confronting an area of law that is often complicated and unfamiliar to most families. Client service means fighting for what is in the best interest of each client while also remaining transparent, honest and understanding. Paige is able to empathize with clients while also communicating complex issues in a thorough, yet simplified, way so that they are able to better understand and appreciate the specific matter and difficult circumstances.
As the 2022 vice president in the Illinois Chapter of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA), and chair for the NAELA Education Committee, Paige continues to develop her skill-set and knowledge on elder law and related legal matters. Early on, while attending law school, she took an interest in assisting individuals who are in their most vulnerable states, where she worked in the juvenile division of the Office of the Public Guardian. She also volunteered with the Center for Disability & Elder Law’s adult guardianship help desk, Chicago Volunteer Legal Services, Equip for Equality and the Chicago-Kent Self Help Web Center. These experiences sparked her advocacy and passion for fundraising and pro bono work.
In her free time, Paige is an active volunteer with the Chicago Bar Association (CBA) Wills for Heroes Foundation, providing essential legal documents to first responders free of charge; the CBA Lawyers in the Classroom program, helping second through eighth grade students better understand the U.S. Constitution, our legal system and law-related careers; and Elara Caring Hospice, offering support to hospice patients and their families. Paige also volunteers with Activate CHI, Bears Care, FairVote Illinois, Misericordia, the NAACP, Salvation Army, One Brick Chicago and We The Action. In 2021, Paige started her own project, #DoBetterChi, which consists of fundraising and collecting donations to create bags of food items and toiletries for individuals in Chicago’s Uptown area who are currently experiencing homelessness.
Paige is involved in a variety of coed sports and Zumba. She also enjoys playing fantasy football and attending and watching any and all sporting events. She is a diehard Chicago Bears fan and enjoys Chicago sports teams overall, but throws her own curveball into the mix as she is also a lifelong fan of the St. Louis Cardinals. In addition to sports and advocacy work, Paige loves arts and crafts, playing engine-building board games and spending time with her friends and family, including her grumpy cat and new puppy, who are the best of friends.
LINDA M. STROHSCHEIN | TREASURER
Linda M. Strohschein is the principal of Strohschein Law Group, LLC, a boutique estate planning and elder law firm with offices in St. Charles and Wheaton, Illinois. She concentrates her practice on Estate and Long-Term Care Planning, Guardianship, Estate and Trust Administration and Probate Litigation. Ms.Strohschein is Certified as an Elder Law Attorney (CELA) by the National Elder Law Foundation. Although CELA is not required by the State of Illinois, this title is earned through a multi-faceted process and the attorney must successfully pass a comprehensive certification exam to demonstrate an in-depth knowledge of Elder Law. She is a frequent speaker on a variety of estate planning and long-term care topics. Ms. Strohschein is a current member of the Kane County Bar Association. In addition, she is also a member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys and serves as the Treasurer of the Executive Board for the Illinois chapter. Ms. Strohschein received her B.A. from George Mason University and her J.D. from the John Marshall Law School.
DAWN WEEKLY | IMMEDIATE PAST PRESIDENT PRESIDENT
Dawn M. Weekly is a solo practitioner whose firm, Legacy Law Firm, LLC is in Sandwich, IL. Dawn received her J.D. from Northern Illinois University in 2004 and thereafter served a two-year clerkship with the Michigan State Court of Appeals in Grand Rapids, MI.
Dawn has been a member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys since 2009 and she has served on the Legislative Committee for several years. She is a member of the Illinois State Bar Association as well as several local bar associations. She is currently a member of the Board of Directors of the Fox Valley Community Services organization and the Veterans Legal Aid Society.
In her spare time, Dawn plays in the Indian Valley Community Band and the Talk of the Town Swing Band, where she plays clarinet, saxophone, flute, and oboe. Her bowling average is 165.