On Thursday, June 7, 2018, Alice Sackett of our firm is sworn is like the 160th President of the Kane County Bar Association at the Dunham Woods Riding Club in Wayne. We are extremely proud of her accomplishments and at her achieving this honor. Below are comments posted in the pages of the monthly journal of the KCBA, known as the Bar Briefs. Please join us in congratulating Alice and wishing her the best in her term in the upcoming year.
When she was in the seventh grade, Alice Sackett was informed that the class was to select a topic and write a research paper. It was 1977. The class was instructed they could pick anything that they wished as a research project. Alice selected the death penalty. Prior to that point, she had not really made up her mind whether she wanted to be a psychiatrist or an attorney. Gary Gilmore had been sentenced to death in 1977 and chose to die by firing squad, which was how Alice decided on her topic. As Alice indicates, her father discouraged her from being a psychiatrist, telling her: “[y]ou won’t want to do that. All you do is listen to people’s problems all day”. As it turns out, as Alice laughingly looks back now, that is exactly what lawyers do. After researching and preparing her paper, she made a decision that she wished to become a lawyer, and specifically a criminal prosecutor. This was a goal that she pursued and achieved. After graduating with her Juris Doctor in May of 1991 from Northern Illinois College of Law; having made the Dean’s List and achieving the Outstanding Contribution to the Law School Community Award; Alice began her career as an Assistant State’s Attorney in Kane County, serving under four administrations, ranging from 1990 through 1998; and again from 2007 through 2012. Her last position in Kane County was as Supervisor of the Juvenile Delinquency and Mental Health Divisions.
Fortunately for our office, after finishing her second stint as an Assistant State’s Attorney, she began working for Turner Law Offices, as an associate, before we formed a partnership as Turner & Sackett, LLC, with offices in Sycamore and Geneva. Alice now concentrates her practice on personal injury, wrongful death, and worker’s compensation claims. In the course of her career both as a prosecutor and as a private attorney, Alice has been extensively involved in bar association activities. She describes herself as a “joiner”. She initially joined the KCBA as a good way to meet people and learn about other areas of the law. She started out on one committee and pretty soon found out that she was on four. Alice has served on the Elder Care, Disability and Mental Health; Bench and Bar; Diversity; Women in the Law; and Worker’s Compensation Committees. Several years ago, Alice decided to get more actively involved in leadership roles and she ran for and was thus successfully elected to, the position of Director on the Board of Managers of the KCBA. Following that, she has worked her way up through the ranks as Secretary/Treasurer and Vice President. Alice is also actively involved in the Illinois State Bar Association. She currently has been serving for six years on the Standing Committee for Women in the Law, and now serves that group on the social subcommittee. She maintains memberships in the Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, American Association for Justice, Illinois Worker’s Compensation Lawyers Association and DeKalb County Bar Association. Her past service also includes time on the Kane County Mental Health Protocol Task Force and the Kane County Crisis Intervention Task Force, where she was a founding member and on the instructional staff.
Alice acknowledges that there is a growing concern across all levels of traditional bar associations, whether local, state or national, with respect to declining membership. Younger attorneys often network through social media and do not see the need to join a formal bar association. Many attorneys working in government do not see the point in networking. The profession as a whole is starting to age out. In her term as President of the KCBA, she intends on focusing on making the KCBA relevant to all members and all attorneys who might be prospective members. She also intends to focus on attorney wellness. Statistically, she notes, attorneys have high rates of alcoholism, drug abuse, suicide, and early death. “We need to do a better job of supporting one another and taking care of our mental and physical health”, she says. In her year at the helm, Alice hopes to promote the KCBA as a means of providing tools for all attorneys in all age groups to better network with one another.
Alice was fortunate to have parents that influenced her values significantly from an early age. Both her mother and father were committed to education, avid readers, dedicated public servants, and fiscal conservatives. She and her two sisters were expected to obtain a good education so that they would be able to support themselves, and her father always told them that he would not be paying for any weddings until each of the girls had their own careers in place. Each of her parents gave generously of their money and their time. They would each lend a hand to anyone in need. Her grandmother taught Alice to live life to the fullest and to make her own choices because she would always be happy with them. These sets of values continue to provide a base for her and her service to the bar and its members.
In her spare time, Alice enjoys the company of her three boys: Spencer, 24; Marshal, 21; and Tate, 20; and going places or doing things with them. She has always had an interest in travel and looks forward each year to planning a trip overseas. She loves learning about other cultures, people and history. Regretfully, she says now that she wished that she had stayed with a foreign language consistently through her school years. Alice also enjoys cooking and playing golf (poorly, she says); as well as playing with her dog, Lily. We look forward to her year as President of the KCBA.