The Federal Defender Program for the Northern District of Illinois is an independent, non-profit community defender organization. The nation’s first stand-alone federal defender office, our legal professionals have been fighting for justice since 1965.

What We Do

Represent Clients

Our staff works as a team to zealously represent our clients in the highest professional manner. As lawyers, mitigation specialists, investigators, paralegals, and legal assistants, our criminal defense practice is holistic and client-centered.



The right to counsel was enshrined in the Sixth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. It stands as a mission statement to everyone here.

— John Murphy, Executive Director