Athena Farmakis

Athena Farmakis

Attorney

Athena Farmakis was born and raised in the Chicagoland area, attended and graduated with a B.A. from Northwestern University, and received her law degree from DePaul University College of law. With over 25 years of litigation experience, Athena brings a unique, well-rounded, balanced career having tried 67 jury trials and hundreds of bench trials in complex and media-sensitive cases. Athena dedicated most of her legal career to serving the public for over 20 years as a Cook County Assistant State’s Attorney.

Known for her zealous advocacy, Athena fought for the rights of countless victims and their families in homicide, sexual assault, child abuse and many other violent crimes often resulting in personal and catastrophic injury. She also led the prosecution of countless weapons, narcotics and financial crimes cases. Her dedication and hard work has afforded her with vast, wide-ranging trial expertise and knowledge of the litigation process. Athena has also actively participated in Continuing Legal Education (CLE) trainings and has made several presentations as speaker, lecturer and panelist. She has additional experience in real estate, having managed a multi-unit apartment building attending to tenant disputes, tax appeal matters, and capital improvement projects.

Athena is very active in her community and is committed to people and issues outside of the courtroom. She currently serves as president of her 30 story high-rise condominium association on the north-side of Chicago where she presides over disciplinary and mediation hearings and works closely with association attorneys in managing legal disputes. Athena is a member and supports numerous local bar associations and is the current secretary of the Hellenic Bar Association of Illinois. She has represented clients in immigration matters for the Hellenic Bar’s pro bono legal clinic which serves low-income members of the Greek community of Chicago.

Underscoring her commitment to diversity and our youth, Athena has served on the Diversity Scholarship Foundation’s scholarship committee and was an instructor for the Constitutional Rights Foundation, “Lawyers in the Classroom” program for Chicago area middle schools. She loves dogs and cherishes her volunteer work at animal shelters. She enjoys being active and is a regular cyclist, runner, and tennis player.

Bar Admissions

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  • Supreme Court of the United States 2012-present
  • United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois 1993-present
  • State of Illinois 1993-present

Professional Associations & Committees

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ASSOCIATIONS

  • Redeploy Illinois Oversight Board: former member of the board overseeing the Illinois Redeploy program seeking to reduce the number of incarcerated youth through non-detention community alternatives.
  • Constitutional Rights Foundation Chicago: Lawyers in the Classroom program – instructor/teacher
  • Women’s Bar Association of Illinois – Member, Volunteer
  • Chicago Kent College of Law, Substitute Trial Advocacy Instructor, Mock Trial Judge

COMMITTEES

  • Hellenic Bar Association of Illinois – Officer, Judicial Evaluation Committee Chair, 2012-2015
  • Diversity Scholarship Foundation: Scholarship Committee

Education

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EDUCATION

  • DePaul University College of Law
    Chicago, Illinois
    Juris Doctor, 1993
  • Northwestern University
    Evanston, Illinois
    Bachelor of Arts 1990

Experience

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VANDERGINST LAW, ATTORNEY (4/20 – present)

ATHENA FARMAKIS, Attorney at Law – 2018 – 2020

COOK COUNTY STATE’S ATTORNEY’S OFFICE, CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, 1994 – 2018

  • Attorney Litigation Supervisor,  2012 – 2018
  • Felony Trial Attorney, Criminal Prosecutions Bureau, 1999-2012
  • Criminal Prosecutions Attorney, 1994-1999

Publications & Seminars

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  • Trial Advocacy Training, Panelist
    Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office
    2017, 2015, 2014

SPEAKER

  • Identification Evidence, Lecture Speaker
    Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office
    2013
  • Opening Statements/Closing Arguments, Lecture Speaker
    Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office
    2013
  • Discovery and Due Diligence Considerations, Speaker
    Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office
    2013
  • Preparing Witnesses, Lecture, Speaker
    Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office
    2013

Civic & Charitable Organizations

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  • Condominium Association – President
  • Animal Care League – Volunteer, Oak Park, IL.
  • Teen Living /Ignite For Homeless Youth
  • National Hellenic Museum – Member, Volunteer