2017 Forty Attorneys Under 40 Presentation

Matthew R.  Carter
Matthew R. Carter
Winston & Strawn LLP
▶Complex commercial and appellate litigation, white collar criminal litigation, corporate
40 Under Class – 2017

As a partner with Chicago’s Winston & Strawn, Matthew Carter works with some of the most talented legal minds in the city. But even here, Carter stands out.

Former Illinois Governor and Former Winston & Strawn Chairman, Jim Thompson, had this to say about Carter, “In addition to being a bright and gifted lawyer, Matthew is one of the rare lawyers who can be a leader, but has the ability to fit in and be a member of a team.” The Governor continued, “Clients love Matt and they know they are in good hands with Matt on their team.” According to professional colleagues, Carter has already earned a series of important legal victories that belie his age.

“By any measure, Matt’s accomplishments are outstanding,” said Gino DiVito with Chicago’s Tabet, DiVito and Rothstein. “Quite simply, he is a credit to our profession.”

To stand out at Winston & Strawn, an attorney needs impressive legal victories. Carter has these.

Carter was a key member of the team that successfully defended Philip Morris in an appeal to the Illinois Supreme Court from an Illinois Appellate Court opinion reinstating a $10.1 billion consumer fraud judgment against the tobacco manufacturer.

That case, one of the most-watched Illinois Supreme Court cases in the last 10 years, ended successfully for Philip Morris, with the Supreme Court vacating the $10.1 billion judgment.

In 2015, Carter helped a client obtain the dismissal of a RICO complaint alleging over $400 million in damages in the Northern District of Illinois. Carter argued the case before the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, which affirmed the dismissal in 2017.

Michael Reagan, an attorney in Ottawa, Illinois, said that results like this are little surprise to him. He’s worked with Carter, and knows just how talented this attorney is.

“[Matt] brings a fresh and innovative mind to bear on complex problems, but his ideas are deeply formed by a scholar’s respect for the historical and theoretical underpinnings of legal doctrines,” Reagan said.

Adam Vaught, with Chicago’s Hinshaw & Culbertson, has also worked closely with Carter. And like other city attorneys, came away impressed with Carter’s legal mind and professional demeanor. “He has the rare gift of being able to analyze complicated legal issues and work them down to simple solutions,” Vaught said.

Illinois Supreme Court Justice Rita B. Garman recognized Carter’s work on practice-related articles for the Illinois State Bar Association, noting that she “reads these pieces with interest, as he has used his familiarity with the rules and procedures of the Illinois Supreme Court to share his insights with other lawyers.”

Carter finds time, too, to volunteer. He is a volunteer with the Illinois Judges Foundation, serving on the Foundation’s Auxiliary Committee to help raise funds supporting the foundation’s work.

“Matt is kind, thoughtful and mature beyond his years,” said Illinois Supreme Court Justice Thomas Kilbride, who pointed to Carter’s work with the Illinois Judges Foundation and stated that Carter has “the compassion and temperament necessary to become a truly exceptional attorney.

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