History of the DuPage County State’s Attorney’s Office
For the first 54 years of statehood, Illinois had no county-based prosecutor offices. Under Illinois’s first two constitutions and applicable laws, prosecutors were elected or appointed in each of the state’s judicial circuits which almost always included more than one county. These officers, interchangeably called Circuit Attorneys and State’s Attorneys were tasked with the duty of prosecuting all criminal cases as well as providing legal advice to any state or county officials in their jurisdiction. The 1870 Constitution provided that in 1872 and every four years thereafter, the voters of each county would elect a State’s Attorney. Since that time, the way in which Illinois voters have selected their local prosecutors has remained the same.
Constitutional & Legislative History
In 1819, the First General Assembly adopted legislation providing for the duties and selection of the attorney general and three circuit attorneys with the Attorney General also serving as the circuit attorney in the First Circuit in downstate Illinois. These early prosecutors were appointed by the Governor with the advice and consent of the Illinois Senate and were entrusted with the responsibility to prosecute "all matters and things, pleas, actions, and suits, wherein the state is a party.” In 1827, the term “circuit attorney” was temporarily replaced with the term “state’s attorney” when the General Assembly revised the law proscribing the duties of the Attorney General and local prosecutors. Section 1 of that legislation provided that it shall be the duty of the attorney general to “when required, to give his opinion without fee or reward to any county commissioner’s court [County Board] …when required to do so, upon any question of law relating to any criminal or other matter in which the people, or any county, is concerned…” Section 4 of the 1827 Act directed state’s attorneys to “do and perform the duties, within the judicial circuit in which he shall reside, which are, by the first section of this Act, required of the attorney general.” Accordingly, as early as 1827, State’s Attorneys have served in the dual role as prosecutors and counselors to county government.
In 1835, the General Assembly assumed the responsibility of electing state’s attorneys for terms of two years, ending the previous system of appointment by and service at the pleasure of the Governor. It was during this time that the area that is now DuPage County was formally incorporated.
In the 1840s, the General Assembly reversed itself and re-designated local prosecutors as “circuit attorneys,” but this change would not last for long. Beginning with the ratification of the Constitution of 1848, circuit-based prosecutors became state’s attorneys again. Interestingly, from 1848 until 1867, the State of Illinois functioned without an elected or appointed Attorney General and the state’s attorneys served as the sole prosecuting authority in the State of Illinois. During this time, state’s attorneys were popularly elected for four-year terms in each of the multi-county judicial circuits. Between 1848 and 1870, statutes occasionally used the term “prosecuting attorney” to refer to state’s attorneys as the 1848 Constitution permitted the General Assembly to provide for the election of county prosecutors in place of circuit-wide elected state’s attorneys.
The state’s third constitution, ratified in 1870, provided that in 1872, and every 4 years thereafter, state’s attorneys were to be elected by county, rather than by judicial circuit. Since 1870, continuing after the 1970 Constitution, the principal powers and duties of the state’s attorneys have remained largely the same – with some of the statutory provisions still retaining language from the 1820s.
William George Smith, 1872-1876
The first DuPage County State’s Attorney elected under this new system was William G. Smith who served one four-year term. He was born in Westhaven, VT in 1816 and moved to Illinois in 1853, settling first in McHenry County before moving to Warrenville and later Wheaton by 1864. He was admitted to the bar in 1867 and after building a successful practice, he was elected as a Republican to the newly-created office of DuPage County State’s Attorney in 1872. In June 1876, Smith assisted the sheriff in arresting an “insane man.” In the process, the prisoner struck Smith in the head with a stone. Four years later, this injury would lead to a severe stroke of apoplexy that resulted in Smith’s retirement as an attorney. He opened and maintained a collections business operated into at least the mid 1890s.
Aaron William Sindlinger, 1876-1880
We know very little about our second state’s attorney. While the DuPage County Clerk and the Election Commission do not have records indicating the name of the individual who served in the four-year period following Smith’s time as State’s Attorney, records of the Illinois State Archives reflect the election of Aaron W. Sindlinger in 1876. State’s Attorney Sindlinger appears to have been born in Pennsylvania in 1847 and was a graduate of the University of Michigan’s law school in 1872. Interestingly, the records of the Supreme Court reflect the admission of an “Aaron W. Sindling, Jr.” to the bar in 1873, and there is no record of Aaron W. Sindlinger. Mr. Sindlinger appears to have completed his term in office (there is no record of a mid-term special election) but did not seek reelection. As of 1880, the US Census reflected that there was an attorney named A. W. Sindlinger residing in Chaffee, Colorado. The records of the Colorado Bar Association also show the admission of an Aaron W. Sindlinger in 1881 suggesting that Sindlinger may have moved west after finishing his term in office. This is reinforced by contemporary alumni listings of the University of Michigan which indicated that the Aaron Sindlinger who graduated in 1872 resided in Plainfield, Illinois during the 1870s and in Denver by the 1910s and also explains why there is very little local information about him. As a footnote, an important Colorado Supreme Court case on the professional responsibilities of lawyers resulted in the disbarment of attorney A. W. Sindlinger in 1901. See People of the State of Colorado ex. rel. Colorado State Bar v. Sindlinger, 28 Colo 258 (1901). It remains unclear whether the two attorneys are one and the same.
Lawrence Charles Cooper, 1880-1888
The next state’s attorney of record was Lawrence C. Cooper, who served from 1880-1888. Cooper was born in Camden, England and immigrated to the United States at the age of 4. He was admitted to the Illinois Bar in 1868. Following his tenure as state’s attorney (then the longest), Cooper continued to reside in DuPage County and practice law. He died of pneumonia at his home in Glen Ellyn in March of 1917 at the age of 73.
John Henry Batten, Jr. 1888-1896
Like his predecessor, Republican John Batten was English by birth. Born in London in 1850, he was educated in Chicago schools. Following his admission to the bar he moved to Naperville in 1873. Batten served as state’s attorney for eight years before being elected county judge in DuPage County in 1896. He later served as a judge of the Cook County Probate Court until 1902. Batten moved to Chicago and practiced law there for the remainder of his life. He succumbed to a long illness on January 19, 1928 at the age of 77.
Mazzini Slusser, 1896-1904
DuPage County voters elected Mazzini Slusser as their state’s attorney in 1896. A native of Pontiac, Michigan, he was an 1876 graduate of the University of Michigan. State's Attorney Slusser was admitted to the Illinois Bar in 1893 after having practiced law in Ohio for 10 years -- including service as Fulton County Prosecutor. During his time as state's attorney, Slusser maintained an outside law practice and served as general counsel to various telephone and telegraph companies. After leaving office, Slusser would later serve as a DuPage County judge and later a circuit judge in Cook County. In 1922, he was nominated by the GOP as one of its candidates for the Illinois Supreme Court. Slusser died in Arkansas at the age of 73 in January 1926. Slusser appears to have the distinction of being the only DuPage County State's Attorney to have served as an elected prosecutor in another state.
Henry Howard Goodrich, 1904-1906
State’s Attorney Henry H. Goodrich was born in Lisle Township in 1852 as the first son of a prominent DuPage County family. His father Charles was a founding member of the Republican Party. Goodrich attended Beloit College and what is now North Central College in Naperville and taught briefly before attending Union College of Law (now Northwestern University’s Law School). After being admitted to the bar in 1879, Goodrich practiced law in Naperville and served as editor of the local newspaper, the Naperville Citizen. He was elected to succeed Mazzini Slusser in 1904, but died in office in 1906. Goodrich carries the unfortunate distinction of having the shortest tenure of any known elected DuPage County State’s Attorney.
Charles William Hadley, 1906-1920
Following Goodrich’s death, Charles Hadley was appointed DuPage County State’s Attorney. Hadley was born in West Chicago in 1875 to a prominent Republican family. He was an 1899 graduate of Wheaton College and was elected Justice of the Peace in 1900 while still attending Northwestern University Law School. He was admitted to the bar in 1902 and practiced law for just four years before his appointment as state’s attorney. By 1910, Hadley was serving as President of the Illinois State’s Attorney’s Association. After leaving office in 1920, Hadley served as a Special Assistant Attorney General prosecuting public corruption cases in Rock Island and McHenry Counties. From 1929 to 1932, Hadley served as the Chairman of the Illinois Commerce Committee and unsuccessfully sought the Republican nomination for Illinois Attorney General in 1932 and 1936. According to the Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois, Volume 2 published during Hadley’s tenure as state’s attorney, Hadley was “an upright lawyer who is an honor to the profession. There is no man who comprehends better than he the ethics of his calling, nor who is more fearless in the prosecution of evil doers. His conscience dictates his policies and he follows them without thought of personal loss or gain.” At the time of Hadley’s death in 1951 at the age of 75, he was the county’s oldest practicing attorney. Assuming an appointment in January 1906 soon after Goodrich’s death, Hadley’s approximately 5,400 days in office give him the distinction of being DuPage County’s longest-tenured prosecutor.
Chauncey William Reed, 1920-1934
In 1920, voters selected Chauncey W. Reed to serve as DuPage County State’s Attorney. Reed was born in West Chicago in 1890 and by 1913 was serving as City Treasurer. Educated at Northwestern University and Webster College of Law, Reed served in World War I before returning to DuPage County to practice law. Like his predecessors, Reed was a member of the Republican Party and was DuPage County Republican Chairman for much of his time as state’s attorney. Like Hadley, Reed would also spend fourteen years in office, resigning in 1934 to take a seat in the United States House of Representatives. He was elected to the next ten Congresses where he served until his death in 1956. At the time of his death, Reed was the Chairman of the House Committee on the Judiciary. He is the only DuPage County State’s Attorney to have chaired a Congressional Committee.
Russell Watson Keeney, 1934-1940
Reed was succeeded by his law partner, Russell Watson Keeney, who had also been serving as an assistant state’s attorney. State’s Attorney Keeney was born in downstate Pittsfield in Pike County in 1897, but was educated in Naperville. He attended DePaul University’s College of Law and became the Justice of the Peace in Lisle Township in 1920, and Township Clerk in 1924. In 1940, he became County Judge in DuPage County and later a Circuit Judge in the 16th Judicial Circuit (which then included DuPage County). After 16 years in judicial service, Keeney left the bench to take a seat in Congress in 1956, but died a little more than one year into his first term on January 3, 1957 at the age of 59. Keeney and his predecessor Reed are the only two DuPage County State’s Attorneys to have served in Congress.
Lee Earle Daniels, 1940-1952
Keeney’s successor was prominent Elmhurst Attorney and Republican Lee E. Daniels. A graduate of Loyola University where he played football, and a 1913 bar admittee, Daniels served as one of State’s Attorney Keeney’s assistants. As state’s attorney, Daniels implemented and wrote the handbook for the Tax Foreclosure method of collecting taxes and was credited with collecting over a million dollars in back taxes for the county. The Illinois State’s Attorney Association recognized him as “Mr. State’s Attorney” in 1951 for his legislative initiatives and an educational campaign to improve traffic safety. In addition to his duties as state’s attorney, and previously as an assistant state’s attorney, Daniels was a prominent football referee for the Big Ten Conference having previously referred high school games in Chicago. An outspoken anti-Communist, he opted to seek the Republican Nomination for Illinois Attorney General in 1952 in lieu of a fourth term, but was defeated in the primary by DeKalb County Judge Latham Castle and returned to private practice. The following year, he was appointed to head Illinois’ Youth Commission and in 1956 was elected to the first of three terms in the Illinois House of Representatives. Defeated for renomination in 1962, Daniels was preparing to run for his old seat when he suffered a fatal heart attack in February 1964 at the age of 73. One of his grandsons, Lee A. Daniels, would follow him in representing Elmhurst in the Illinois House and eventually served as its Speaker. Daniels’s assistant state’s attorneys included future state’s attorney and federal judge William J. Bauer and future Congressman John Erlenborn.
William Lyman Guild, 1952-1958
Next to hold the office was William L. Guild, the great nephew of Charles Hadley. State's Attorney Guild was born in 1910 in Wayne Township graduated from Wheaton College and earned his law degree from Northwestern University. He was admitted to the bar in 1934. Guild later enlisted in the Army and served in the JAG Corps during World War II. After the war and a stint in Washington, Guild returned to Wheaton and became a part-time assistant state's attorney before being elected state's attorney in 1952. Guild served for six years before being elected as a DuPage County judge in 1958. His term on the bench was cut short when he was appointed Illinois Attorney General, but he and the other statewide Republican candidates were defeated for election later that year in a Democratic landslide. He returned to the DuPage County bench in 1962 where he served until his elevation to the appellate court in 1970. He retired from the bench in 1980 and continued to practice law until his death in 1993. Guild was the first DuPage County State’s Attorney to serve in an Illinois statewide constitutional office.
Jack Eldon Bowers, 1958-1959
State's Attorney Bowers was born in Warsaw, Indiana in 1925 and attended Manchester College. After serving in the US Army Air Corps in World War II, Bowers earned his law degree from the University of Chicago Law School in 1950 and later became a DuPage County Assistant State’s Attorney. When his predecessor, William Guild was elected to the bench in 1958, the outgoing Chairman of the DuPage County Board appointed Bowers as interim State’s Attorney with exactly two years remaining in the term. Also vying for the appointment at the time was First Assistant State’s Attorney William J. Bauer, who had been considered by many to be the favorite for the spot. Unfortunately for Bowers, litigation initiated by the Democrats forced a special election to complete Guild's term. Also unfortunate for Bowers was his limited ability to campaign due to his decision to personally prosecute a prominent murder case. Bauer defeated Bowers by more than a 2 to 1 margin in the April 1959 special Republican primary election and went on to win the special general election in June. After his defeat, Bowers returned to the private practice of law and became president of the DuPage County Bar Association. He later chaired the Illinois Parole and Pardon Board and returned to elected office serving in both the Illinois House of Representatives and the Illinois Senate. Bowers eventually retired to Normal, Illinois where he died in December 2007 at the age of 82. Although his time in office was quite short, he is the only state’s attorney to have served in both chambers of the Illinois General Assembly.
William Joseph Bauer, 1959-1964
The winner of the Bowers-Bauer primary, William J. Bauer, became State’s Attorney in 1959 at the age of 32. Born in Chicago in 1926, Bauer moved to Elmhurst in 1941 and attended Immaculate Conception High School. Upon graduating from high school, Bauer attended Elmhurst College for one year before leaving to join the Army. After his military service was complete, Bauer returned to Elmhurst College in 1947 and graduated in 1949. He earned his law degree from DePaul University’s College of Law in 1952 and practiced law with then-former State’s Attorney Lee E. Daniels. He subsequently opened a law practice with his friend and former high school classmate, future Congressman John Erlenborn, which they would maintain together until 1964. During the 1950s, Bauer also served as an assistant state’s attorney at a time where it was common for state's attorneys and their assistants to maintain outside legal practices, and was the first assistant state’s attorney when his boss, William Guild, was elected county judge. After the County Board tapped Jack Bowers to succeed Guild, Bauer who had also sought the appointment, resigned from the office to launch his campaign. Following his election in June 1959, Bauer served as state’s attorney until 1964 when he was elected a circuit court judge in DuPage County. While still serving as judge, Bauer was nominated by President Richard Nixon to serve as the United States’ Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois in 1970, and among other things was responsible for procuring the indictment of sitting-US Court of Appeals Judge (and former Illinois Governor) Otto Kerner. Bauer served as US Attorney for 17 months before he was again nominated to a federal office by President Nixon and confirmed by the Senate – this time as Judge of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. Three years later, Nixon’s successor, Gerald Ford elevated Bauer to the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit (ironically, to the seat formerly held by then-convicted Kerner), a position he held until assuming senior status in 1994 after having served as the Circuit’s Chief Judge from 1986-1993. Even today, Bauer continues to maintain a full caseload. He is the only DuPage County State’s Attorney to have entered federal judicial service and to have served as a United States Attorney. In 2010, the DuPage County Board renamed the Judicial Office Facility Annex, which as of 2004 houses the State’s Attorney’s Office, for Bauer.
William Valentine “Doc” Hopf, 1964-1973
Succeeding Bauer was his First Assistant, William V. “Doc” Hopf. Hopf was born in Geneva in 1928 and was the son of a dentist who had served as DuPage County’s Coroner and from whom Hopf eventually inherited the nickname “Doc.” A lifelong resident of Wheaton, Hopf was the captain of the football team and a track star at Wheaton Community High School. After serving as a special deputy sheriff in 1948, Hopf earned his law degree from DePaul University’s College of Law in 1952, and joined the Army during the Korean War. Upon returning to Wheaton, he was elected Justice of the Peace in Milton Township in 1955. He served as an Assistant State's Attorney from 1957 until 1964 when he became State’s Attorney. In 1973, Hopf was appointed a Circuit Judge in DuPage County and later became Chief Judge in 1979. From 1981 until his retirement from judicial service in 1988, he served as a Judge of the Second District Appellate Court. Hopf passed away in 1998 at the age of 69.
John James Bowman, 1973-1976
In 1973, former assistant public defender John Bowman was selected by the County Board to be the new State’s Attorney following Hopf’s appointment as judge. He received the appointment over two men, one of whom later became the County’s Chief Judge and the other who became the Speaker of the Illinois House of Representatives. Bowman was born in Oak Park on Jan. 13, 1930 and received his B.A. in business administration from the University of Illinois and his J.D. from John Marshall Law School. He served in the Counter Intelligence Corps of the U.S. Army from 1952 to 1954. Following nearly a decade in private practice, Bowman became a Deputy Public Defender from 1965 to 1973 before being named State's Attorney of DuPage County. In 1976, Bowman opted not to seek election to a full term and instead ran for judge. He served on the 18th Judicial Circuit Court from 1976 to 1990. In 1990 he was elected judge of the Second District Appellate Court. Bowman is the only person to have served as DuPage County State’s Attorney after having been a member of the Public Defender’s Office. Bowman passed away after a battle with cancer on September 26, 2012, at the age of 82.
Joseph Michael Fitzsimmons, 1976-1984
The 1976 Republican Primary to succeed Bowman saw two future State’s Attorneys squaring off against each other in an often bitter contest. The winner, J. Michael Fitzsimmons was born in Chattanooga, Tennessee and attended law school at Northwestern University. After graduating in 1963, Fitzsimmons joined the Securities and Exchange Commission as an attorney, serving until 1966. From 1968-1970, he was an assistant state’s attorney under Doc Hopf. Fitzsimmons left the office to become an assistant United States Attorney serving for two years before being named regional director with the U.S. Department of Justice's Office of Drug Abuse Law Enforcement. When State’s Attorney Bowman announced his intention to run for judge, Fitzsimmons challenged and upset the preferred candidate of the Republican Party and Bowman’s First Assistant, Jim Ryan, narrowly defeating him in the GOP primary by 300 votes. During Fitzsimmons’ tenure, DuPage County, as well as his office, grew rapidly. His assistant state’s attorneys included many of the county’s future elected officials, including a county board chairman, state’s attorney, and numerous judges. After being defeated by Jim Ryan in an equally bitter primary in 1984, Fitzsimmons returned to private practice. Suffering from a debilitating muscular disorder, Fitzsimmons died in 2001 at the age of 63. He appears to have been the only elected incumbent state’s attorney ever to have been defeated for renomination, let alone, reelection.
James Edward “Jim” Ryan, 1984-1995
Jim Ryan was born in Chicago in 1946 and attended what is now Benet Academy and Benedictine University in Lisle. As a young man, Ryan took up boxing and was the 1964 Chicago Golden Gloves Middleweight Champion. He earned his law degree from Chicago-Kent College of Law in 1971 and entered the DuPage County State’s Attorney’s Office. Just three years later, he was tapped by State’s Attorney Bowman to serve as his First Assistant. Ryan sought the Republican nomination for state’s attorney in 1976 but was defeated by J. Michael Fitzsimons. After eight years in private practice, Ryan challenged Fitzsimmons for the GOP nomination. Ryan criticized Fitzsimmons’s handling of several high-profile cases and went on to win the primary by approximately 10,300 votes. He was subsequently elected, and re-elected in 1984, 1988, and 1992. During his time as state’s attorney, he was elected President of the Illinois State’s Attorney’s Association. In 1990 he was the Republican Nominee for Illinois Attorney General, but lost a narrow race to then-State Comptroller Roland Burris. Four years later Ryan captured the Attorney General’s Office in a landslide election, a feat he repeated in 1998. Ryan was credited for his efforts to professionalize the Office of Attorney General and for taking a leadership role in the war on crime. His office vigorously enforced environmental and consumer protection laws and established a healthcare bureau to protect patients' rights. In 2002, Ryan was the Republican nominee for Governor, but was defeated by Rod Blagojevich as part of a ticket-wide Democratic landslide. After leaving politics, Ryan practiced law briefly before focusing on a teaching position at his alma mater, Benedictine University. Active in various community organizations, Ryan attempted a comeback in 2010 by seeking his party’s gubernatorial nomination but was unsuccessful in a heavily fractured field. He remains the only DuPage County State’s Attorney to have been elected to statewide office.
Anthony Marando Peccarelli, 1995-1996
Upon Jim Ryan’s election as Illinois Attorney General, DuPage County Board Chairman Gayle Franzen was faced with the prospect of choosing a successor. He had two apparent choices: Criminal Bureau Chief Joseph Birkett or County Board Member Robert Heap. Not wanting to give either candidate a “leg-up” in what was likely to be a hotly-contested primary, Franzen tapped Illinois Appellate Judge Anthony M. Peccarelli as Ryan’s successor. Peccarelli was born April 12, 1928, in Newark, New Jersey. He received his law degree from the John Marshall Law School and was admitted to the bar in 1961. From 1962 until 1968, he served as an Assistant State's Attorney before entering private practice. He was elected as a delegate to the Sixth Illinois Constitutional Convention, and served alongside future Illinois political leaders including Richard M. Daley, Michael J. Madigan, and Dawn Clark Netsch. In 1979, he was appointed an associate judge for the Eighteenth Judicial Circuit. He went on to become a circuit judge in 1982, and chief judge for the Eighteenth Judicial Circuit in 1989. In 1993, he was appointed to the Second District Appellate Court where he served until his appointment as State’s Attorney in 1994. After retiring as State's Attorney in 1996, Peccarelli founded a mediation service and practiced law until his death in September 2005. He was the first State’s Attorney to have been in judicial service (other than as a justice of the peace) prior to his appointment and is one of two former Chief Judges to serve in the office.
Joseph Edward Birkett, 1996-2010
Joe Birkett was appointed state's attorney in October 1, 1996, a few days before his election to the first of four terms as state's attorney. State's Attorney Birkett was born in Chicago on February 13, 1955, and lived with his mother and nine siblings in the Austin neighborhood on the city’s west side after his father’s accidental death. Following his freshman year of High School, Birkett was recruited to play football by Aurora Central Catholic High School and would eventually captain the football team North Central College team several years later. While attending college, Birkett was an avid amateur boxer whose career included a Chicago Golden Gloves Championship in 1976. Birkett graduated from John Marshall Law School in Chicago and was admitted to the bar in 1981. Later that fall, Birkett joined the DuPage County State’s Attorney’s Office and would remain in the office for the next 29 years. Over the years, Birkett advanced through the ranks and eventually was named the Chief of the Criminal Prosecutions Bureau under State’s Attorney Jim Ryan. In 1996, Birkett won a hotly contested election for the Republican nomination for State’s Attorney in 1996 - winning all but one precinct countywide in what was initially expected to be a one-sided primary (to Birkett’s disadvantage). In 2002, Birkett was the Republican nominee for Illinois Attorney General, but narrowly lost the election to Lisa Madigan. Four years later, he was then-State Treasurer Judy Baar Topinka’s running mate for Lt. Governor, but was defeated in a statewide Democratic sweep. Birkett’s tenure as State's Attorney ended on December 13, 2010 upon his appointment to the Illinois Appellate Court, Second District. At 14 years, 2 months, and 12 days, Birkett’s tenure was approximately 8 months shorter than that of Charles Hadley’s – however when added to the 15 years Birkett spent as an Assistant State’s Attorney, Birkett’s total time in the office appears to exceed the length of service of any of his predecessors.
Michael Robert Galasso, 2010
Birkett’s appointment to the Appellate Court occurred one day prior to a scheduled County Board meeting to select his successor. In order to prevent a vacancy from interfering with the essential operations of the office, DuPage County Chief Judge Stephen Culliton appointed Michael R. Galasso state's attorney just as Birkett was being sworn in as an appellate judge on December 13, 2010. State’s Attorney Galasso graduated from York High School in 1954 and earned his undergraduate degree from Elmhurst College. In 1961, he graduated valedictorian from Chicago-Kent Law School. Galasso worked in private practice in Villa Park until 1984 when he was appointed as an associate judge for DuPage County. He later became a full circuit judge and in 1995 was elected Chief Judge, a position he held for four years. In February 1999, Galasso was appointed to the appellate court and remained there until 2000 when he retired from the bench. At the time of his appointment as state’s attorney, Galasso was of counsel to the Wheaton-based law firm of Schiller, DuCanto and Fleck, LLP. Galasso’s peaceful, and largely uneventful, 2-day reign as state’s attorney earned him the distinction of having the shortest known tenure of any DuPage County State’s Attorney. He and Anthony Peccarelli are the only two individuals to have served as State’s Attorney following their judicial service as Chief Judge of DuPage County.
Robert Bruce Berlin, 2010 - Present
Michael Galasso’s tenure as State’s Attorney proved to be as brief as expected. On the morning of December 14, 2010, the DuPage County Board unanimously confirmed Chairman Dan Cronin’s nomination of Criminal Bureau Chief Robert B. Berlin to complete the term of Joe Birkett effective the following day. A career prosecutor, Berlin had previously served as Deputy Chief of Criminal Bureau’s Juvenile and Felony Trial Divisions. Prior to joining the DuPage County State's Attorney's Office, Mr. Berlin served as the First Assistant State's Attorney in Kane County and as a felony prosecutor in Cook County. Mr. Berlin was raised in the northern suburbs of Chicago and is a graduate of Dickinson College and Washington University College of Law. He and his wife Carolyn have two daughters.