Rubén Castillo, a first chair litigator, focuses his practice on corporate investigations, white collar criminal defense, private arbitration, and mediation work for litigants. In addition, he serves as chair of Akerman Bench, one of the nation’s largest panels of former appellate and trial court judges, seasoned appellate lawyers, and former state and federal law clerks who provide guidance and feedback for optimal trial and appellate court presentations.

Prior to joining Akerman, Rubén served as Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, becoming the first Latino to hold this position in the district. He is known as a pioneer jurist who was pivotal in bringing diversity to the federal court system and the Chicago legal community. He has presided over high-profile and precedent-setting cases that continue to shape our legal system, and has advocated for clients from all walks of life, from Fortune 100 organizations to those underserved by our legal system. Before serving on the bench, Castillo was regional counsel to the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund. He also served as Assistant United States Attorney in the Special Criminal Prosecutions Division for the United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Illinois.

For more than 20 years, Rubén has taught trial advocacy at Northwestern University School of Law, with law students recognizing him with five teaching awards.

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Honors and Distinctions

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