PILI’s 45th Anniversary Awards Gala

SAVE THE DATE: In 2023, PILI’s Annual Awards Luncheon will return and be held on Wednesday, December 6, 2023 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Palmer House Hilton.

About the Event

This special event will be held in place of PILI’s Annual Awards Luncheon in 2022 to celebrate 45 years of engaging, inspiring and empowering those advancing equal access to justice. We will be raising funds to support PILI’s future growth while also celebrating the very best aspects of the legal profession: the generosity, expertise and commitment of the legal community helping those in need. The event will start with a cocktail reception from 5:30 to 6:30 followed by a three course dinner. The awards will be presented during the program over dinner from 6:30 to 8:30. The event will include a live and silent auction. The dress for the event will be business attire and not formal wear.

Ticket options are as follows:

    • Individual Guest: $300
    • Nonprofit/Government/Judiciary: $200
    • Individual Sponsors (includes two admissions): $1,000
    • Table Host (includes 10 admissions): $2,500

Purchase Tickets

Sponsor this Event

We are offering several sponsorship opportunities and recognize event sponsors on all web and print material related to the event. Firm and corporate sponsorships start at $5,000, and all funds raised go towards PILI’s Programs. PILI is still seeking sponsors for this event.


Every year, PILI presents several awards to acknowledge lawyers and legal programs whose dedication to service, fairness, and justice inspires us and makes us proud. Our 2022 recipients will be honored at the 45th Anniversary Awards Gala on Thursday, December 1st. Congratulations to this year’s award recipients!

  • Distinguished Public Service Award: Jose Rivero of Cullen, Haskins, Nicholson & Menchetti, P.C.
  • Pro Bono Initiative Award: Sidley Austin LLP
  • Distinguished Fellow Alumni Award: Sabreena El-Amin, Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at the City of Chicago Office of Inspector General 
  • Distinguished Intern Alumni Award: Ruth Lopez-McCarthy, Senior Immigration Fellow at the State of Illinois 

Learn more about this year’s annual award recipients »

See a list of past annual award recipients »

Featured Presentation

Join Khalil Gibran Muhammad and Ben Austen from “Some of My best Friends Are…” for a live podcast during the event on “Mass Incarceration at 50 and its Impact on Our Client Communities.”

Some of My Best Friends Are… is a podcast hosted by Khalil Gibran Muhammad and Ben Austen, two best friends who grew up together on the South Side of Chicago in the 1980s. Today a Harvard professor and an award-winning journalist, Khalil and Ben still go to each other to talk about their experiences with the absurdities and intricacies of race in America. In Some of My Best Friends Are… Khalil and Ben invite listeners into their unfiltered conversations about growing up together in a deeply-divided country, and navigating that divide as it exists today.

Please contact PILI’s Executive Director Michael Bergmann at 312-832-5129 or by email with any questions about this event or the work of PILI.