Chicago Coalition Connects
 April 17, 2020

Dear Chicago Chapter Members,
Welcome to the first edition of our quarantine Connects series! Through these periodic, informal check-ins, we will share our Chapter updates, thoughts, ideas and/or resources from the week prior, and feature one of our amazing Delegates. This week, there is a lot on my mind. First, I am so impressed and grateful to be a part of this active and dedicated community of female leaders. Though we have been remote the past few weeks, the Coalition has been more active than ever – with our Executive Committee, National and local Board and Leadership Team working tirelessly to plan multiple CLE offerings and virtual programs to support our members. My thought of the week this week is about moments of light that can come during this otherwise uncertain and stressful time. Our ideas and resources include our new Slack communication channel, a fun scavenger hunt, and a great fitness resource. Our member feature this week is on our Associates Committee Co-Chair Sky Emison. I thought Sky was pretty spectacular when I first met her, but now that I know she likes Tina Fey, read about the story of her name and saw her priceless quarantine selfie with her cat?!  Well, that just warms my heart. If you think you can beat Sky’s mad quarantine selfie skills, we have a contest for you! You can highlight your quarantine skills in a fun photo challenge, as detailed below. And, if you’re still reading after all that, we’ll end with a quote of the week. Thank you to all you do to support the Coalition – have a wonderful (if, unbelievably, snowy) Friday, and enjoy the weekend.

--Sonya, President of the Chicago Chapter

What We've Been Up To And What's Next

O ur Spring Newsletter features messages from all the Coalition’s Chapter presidents, a feature from Paula Davis-Laack about mental health in uncertain times, and member updates accolades. Our National Board Co-Chair Anne Larson and National Board Member Marcia Owens organized an insightful, interesting remote program led by Dr. Arin Reeves, entitled Beyond Inclusion: Bullies Mean Girls & Other Manipulators at Work . If you missed it, you can still view the program here until the end of the month, and get CLE credit too! Our Programming Committee Co-Chairs Devon Beane, Jessica Ekhoff and Kate Johnson organized a virtual workshop focused on gratitude, and strategies to combat stress, led yoga and mindfulness instructor Dana Cruz, and followed that up last night with a relaxing virtual Vinyasa yoga class hosted by Mirepoix Wellenss Studio . Coming up on April 30, our Brown Bag Committee Co-Chairs Tanvi Patel and Jessica Winski will host an Eldercare CLE program about caring for aging parents while balancing home and work. Stay tuned for details on that and on many other remote programs, activities, and events currently in the works by our amazing committees.

Thought of the Week

This week, probably like many of you, I have been thinking a lot about staying in one place. Quite a dramatic change from my regular pace of life over the past many years. While at home, many of us are juggling family-related responsibilities, feelings of isolation or loneliness and work-connected stresses, among others. But there’s also a certain natural point of stopping and assessing (or, in some cases, reassessing) that comes with the current situation – and at least some of those moments truly can be lovely in their own right! Be it a calm, satisfying meal you cooked, or a delicious glass of wine (or two) you had on a cozy evening, seeing those tiny blue, early spring flowers poke out from the snow on a morning walk (really, Chicago?), or realizing that one actually could get quite used to wearing stretchy pants, I hope all of you have experienced some of those moments or realizations, and that they’ve helped to brighten your days.
Resources and Ideas

Join our new Slack Channel to easily share ideas and connect about working from home, parenting, quarantine tips (like where to find awesome sweatpants) and much more. It’s an easy, fun way to connect! Many thanks to our Vice President Malaika Tyson for setting this up. And, Malaika also has shared this fun neighborhood scavenger hunt you can use to keep your kids busy for hours (literally, I tried it!), or to do something fun outdoors while social-distancing with your friends.
And, if you’re looking for some fitness and nutrition ideas, our Advisory Committee Co-Chair Leslee Cohen has shared this Introduction video and link to download home workouts from Jennifer Nagel, who runs her own virtual personal exercise and nutrition business.
If you have received any great quarantine tips or ideas, please post them to our Slack channel or send them to our administrator, Mary Fichtner (email here) , and we will share with them with the group! 

Highlight your Quarantine Skills
in a Fun Photo Challenge

Get your cameras ready! Have you been filling your at-home time baking, floral arranging, or jigsaw puzzling? Join several other diverse bar organizations to show what therapeutic talents you’ve developed in the past month.
To participate, send a photo of your quarantine skill along with your name, firm, and practice area to . Photos will be included in a Coalition Newsletter, social media channels, and a compilation highlighting several of the city’s diverse bar associations and affinity groups.
Really impress us, and we’ll include your photo in a video we are putting together to promote togetherness during these times of physical distancing. Submit your finest photograph by Friday, April 24, at 5 CT.

Many thanks to our Outreach & Inclusion Committee Co-Chairs Malaika Tyson and Gray Mateo-Harris for organizing this awesome contest!

Member Spotlight
Sky Emison, Associate Attorney
Locke Lord LLP
Coalition Chicago Member

Why did you join the Coalition?
Carolyn Blessing, the former President of the Coalition is the current hiring partner at my firm. She convinced me to join, and once I saw all the incredible work that the Coalition was doing (and meeting all the wonderful women who do that work), I was hooked. It has been a very important community for me, and it is always great to meet people outside my firm with shared interests.

What committees are you active on?
I am the Co-Chair of the Associates Committee and the Locke Lord associate representative.

Give us your elevator speech … or “Call me if you have …”
I concentrate my practice on complex litigation, arbitration and healthcare regulatory matters. I am involved in all aspects of litigation, from initial case evaluation all the way to appeals. I have also represented clients on major healthcare insurance acquisitions in order to obtain state regulatory approvals. I’ve been lucky to be able to maintain such a diverse practice, and Locke Lord’s collegial environment allows me to work with attorneys across all practice groups.   

Tell us something interesting about you that many people don’t know.
My sisters’ names are Star and Summer. So growing up, we were called the “Solar Sisters.” Our parents are unique to say the least .

Favorite book or podcast?
My favorite book is Bossypants by Tina Fey. I was never into autobiographical comedy books, but it is just too hilarious not to love.

Quote of the week:
"There is no wealth but life." 
–John Ruskin