Corrin Bennett-Kill — first became familiar with Tax Increment Finance (TIF) Districts while taking a 100-level course on Chicago Politics at DePaul University. Nearly 20 years after earning her bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Public Policy, Corrin is utilizing that long familiarity to educate her community about TIF, whether it be on the playground or the board table. She is a stay-at-home parent to two current Mount Prospect School District 57 students and a staunch advocate for her school district at both the local and state levels. Corrin has recently completed her third year as a District 57 Board Member and her first as Board Vice President, and serves on the ED-RED Advocacy Committee on TIFs/Bears/Finance.

Senator Mary Edly-Allen — Mary Edly-Allen represented the 51st House district in the 101st General Assembly; she has now been elected to the Senate. She has a B.A. in Education from Northeastern Illinois University and a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction with bilingual certification from National Louis University. She is the assistant director of adult education at Mundelein High School and teaches night classes to English language learners. She co-founded an educational nonprofit called Foundation46 and was a founding member of her school district’s diversity committee. She is active in many Lake County community organizations and has served on the board of the Illinois Science Olympiad.

Ares Dalianis — is a member of the Firm’s Executive Committee. Ares serves as general counsel to a number of Illinois school districts where he focuses his practice in the areas of education law, real property taxation and assessment appeals, real estate, eminent domain, TIF counseling, and school district revenue litigation. Ares has a substantial practice representing school districts before the Illinois Property Tax Appeal Board, and in the circuit and appellate courts on valuation and tax rate objections, as well as exemption, tax incentive, condemnation, and land acquisition issues. Ares is a past co-chair of the firm’s Education Practice Group and served on the firm Executive Committee from 2009 to 2015, and currently. Before joining the firm, Ares served as the Deputy Supervisor of the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office Real Estate Tax Section and as an Assistant State’s Attorney in Lake County, Illinois. Ares is the co-author of the chapter entitled “Property Tax Litigation” in the Illinois Institute of Continuing Legal Education book Real Estate Litigation (2016) and the author of recent articles in the Illinois Association of School Business Officials’ IASBO UPDATE Magazine titled “Capturing All Your Revenues” (Winter 2015) and “Referendum Requirement: Mechanics of the 110% Adequacy Referendum” (Spring 2018). Ares is a frequent speaker before diverse groups interested in property assessment, taxation, and tax increment financing issues including IASBO, IASA, the Civic Federation of Chicago, the Illinois Property Assessment Institute, Ed-Red, LEND, NWSSBO, SCOPE, SSSBO, and others.

Cathy Johnson — is currently the Assistant Superintendent for Finance and Operations at Mundelein High School District 120 and Mundelein Elementary School District 75. Cathy brings 18 years of experience as a CSBO, overseeing large, small, rural, and urban districts. Mundelein High School serves approximately 2,200 students and the elementary district serves approximately 1,500 students.

Ms. Johnson oversees the departments of the Business Office, Insurance, Accounts Payable, Buildings and Grounds, Technology, Food & Nutrition, Transportation, and Purchasing. Her resounding philosophy is that whenever a tough decision needs to be made, the clear winner will always be the students and what is in their best interests. Cathy has received her Master of Science Degree in Educational Administration and Type 75 certification from Northern Illinois University, Master of Science Degree in Human Resources from Keller Graduate School of Management and a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from Robert Morris College. She was awarded the Lee Hecht Harrison Award in the Human Resources program at Keller Graduate School of Management, for preparing a comprehensive written plan for a company’s human resource function.

Her professional affiliations include Past President and Board of Directors for the Illinois Association of School Business Officials, past President of Southwest Chapter, Association of School Business Officials International, and the Society for Human Resources Management. She is an active member of ED-RED and has served as a Joint Review Board member for multiple Tax Increment Finance committees.

Joel Finfer — is retired from a four-decade career in sales and marketing. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from Northern Illinois University and brings 30 years of passionate advocacy for public education to the Hawthorn District 73 Board. Currently, Mr. Finfer serves as the Chair of the ED-RED Executive Board.