James A. Rhodes graduated from Loyola University of Chicago in 1976 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science and received his Juris Doctorate Degree from the John Marshall Law School in 1976. He served as an Assistant State's Attorney in both the Criminal Division and the Civil Division where he acted as counsel to the DuPage County Zoning Board and the Sheriff of DuPage County. In 1981, he went into private practice concentrating in the representation of municipalities, their officials and employees in civil rights, employment, and constitutional law litigation in both the state and federal courts and before the Illinois Human Rights Commission and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Mr. Rhodes served as Village Attorney for the Village of Wheeling from 1982 to 2002. He currently serves as the Village Attorney for the Village of Carol Stream and serves as special counsel to a number of municipalities. He has been admitted to the bars of the State of Illinois, the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, and the United States Supreme Court.
Mr. Rhodes is actively involved in a number of professional organizations. He is a current a Director of the Illinois Local Government Lawyers Association and a member of the Illinois Municipal League’s Home Rule Attorneys Committee. He is a past Illinois State Chairman of the International Municipal Lawyers Association, a past President of the Illinois Local Government Lawyers Association, and has served as a member of the Northwest Municipal Conference Attorneys Committee.
In 2017, Mr. Rhodes received the Illinois Local Government Lawyers Association’s highest award, the Robert J. Mangler Distinguished Service Award, recognizing his distinguished service to local government law over his career.
Mr. Rhodes has published numerous articles on local government law. His recent publications include:
Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education Practice Volumes
Co-author, Chapter 1, Building Regulations, Illinois Land Use Law Practice Handbook, Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education, 2017 Ed.
Illinois Municipal League
Co-author, Manual on Liquor Licensing and Regulation, 2017 Ed., Illinois Municipal League Publication
Co-author, The Sunshine Laws: Open Meetings Act and Freedom of Information Act, 2016 Ed., Illinois Municipal League Publication
Co-author, Manual on Home Rule versus Non-Home Rule Status (What’s Best for your Municipality?), 2014 Ed., Illinois Municipal League Publication
Co-author, Manual on Municipal Forms of Local Government, 2014 Ed., Illinois Municipal League Publication
Manual on Police and Fire Disciplinary Matters, 2010 Ed., Illinois Municipal League Publication
Illinois Municipal Review
Co-author, Getting on the Ballot: Top Ten Mistakes for Candidates to Avoid When Circulating and Filing Nominating Petitions, Illinois Municipal Review, September, 2016
Co-author, Official Duties of the Municipal Clerk as the Local Election Official, Illinois Municipal Review, November, 2016
Co-author, Navigating the Election Objection Process, Illinois Municipal Review, December, 2016
Mr. Rhodes has lectured extensively on local government law topics for the Illinois Local Government Lawyers Association, the Illinois Municipal League and the International Municipal Lawyers Association.
His practice is concentrated in the representation of local government entities and their officials, land use and redevelopment, construction, election law, police and fire hiring and discipline and general corporate matters. He is experienced in virtually all aspects of local government law from annexations to zoning.