40 Under Class – 2016
Chasity Boyce now with Skadden, worked as associate general counsel for Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner for just more than a year. But she settled some of the state’s longest-running and most complex litigation for the Department of Corrections and Department of Children and Family Services.
This isn’t a surprise to Boyce’s peers. They say that Boyce has always achieved a level of success that belies her relatively young age.
“Chasity’s leadership style is quiet, subtle but effective,” said Ngozi Okorafor with the Illinois Department of Human Rights. “She is accustomed to advancing sensitive issues, and uses her unassuming but thoughtful ability to engage all parties involved to zealously represent her clients. Chasity serves the public in every aspect of her public role. Despite her youth, Chasity [was] widely respected as a tenacious member of Gov. Rauner’s legal team.”
In her role as an associate general counsel for the Governor, Boyce was also in charge of the Governor’s clemency process. As with everything she does, Boyce excelled in this role, too. The administration reviewed more clemency petitions in its first year than any other administration in Illinois history.
Boyce has enjoyed a long record of success during her legal career. When she worked as a senior associate at O’Hagan, LLC, she quickly became the highest-billed associate on her team, won a directed verdict at trial, and took over 300 depositions.
Boyce was also a trusted advisor to several Fortune 500 clients, handling complex litigation matters for these high-profile clients.
“I’ve had the pleasure of observing Chasity in state and federal court on several occasions. As a premises and products liability attorney, Chasity often had numerous matters to cover at the same time, and I watched her employ the finesse and professionalism reserved for only top-notch attorneys,” said Tiffany Harper with Chicago’s Grant Thornton.
While building a successful legal career, Boyce has also donated countless hours to community and legal groups. Nominators say that Boyce has long been a proponent for criminal justice reform, and has continued this passion by coaching mock trial teams at Hyde Park Academy. As a past president of the Black Women Lawyers’ Association of Greater Chicago, Boyce led the charge in planning and executing the organization’s 2015 National Summit of Black Women Lawyers, the highest-attended and highest-grossing summit that the organization has ever held.
Boyce is also known for mentoring the next generation of diverse lawyers, and has been instrumental in several diversity endeavors. She and Harper co-founded the Diverse Attorney Pipeline Program (DAPP), a 501(c)(3) organization with the mission of cultivating and developing women of color law students into the next generation of diverse lawyers, and a blog that focuses on diversity issues in corporate America, Uncolorblind. This passion led her to one of the nation’s top law firms, where she works as the diversity and inclusion manager.
“Chasity is a woman of principle,” said Jamila Covington with Navistar, Inc. “She stands up for the things she believes in and feels strongly about helping others move beyond barriers. She is also an innovative thinker. She likes finding creative solutions to legal and other issues.”