Thursday, July 27, 2017

Jacobson accepts assistant general counsel position

Debra Jacobson
IASB has announced that Debra Jacobson has accepted the position of assistant general counsel.

Previously, Jacobson worked as a senior associate with the law firm of Hodges, Loizzi, Eisenhammer, Rodick & Kohn LLP, where she practiced school law. Jacobson started at IASB on July 17. She joins IASB’s Office of Legal Counsel, with General Counsel Kimberly Small and Assistant General Counsel Maryam Brotine to provide legal counsel to the executive director and the Association.

“Debra rounds out the office of general counsel’s experience,” said Small. “Debra has a broad background in school law, including a lot of experience in the corporate areas of school law; she will also learn the work of the IASB Policy Services Department this year, working with Cathy Talbert, IASB Associate Executive Director of Policy Services. This collaboration will take the quality of IASB policy services to an even higher level.”

Jacobson received her bachelor’s degree from University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign in 2002 and received her Juris Doctor from Indiana University Mauer School of Law in 2005. She has served with the firm of HLERK since, with a focus on corporate, students, and special education matters. Jacobson counseled and represented school districts with respect to contracts, real estate, tax objections, OMA/FOIA, student residency matters, IEP meetings and due process, and policy decisions.

Jacobson has been an active member of the Illinois Council of School Attorneys and other professional legal organizations, presenting for ICSA as recently as last fall at its 2017 annual seminar.

As assistant general counsel, Jacobson will focus on creating and maintaining the Policy Reference Education Subscription Service (PRESS) materials used by IASB’s Policy Services Department for its work with boards as she assumes her role of assistant PRESS editor. Other key responsibilities will be developing curricula with legal content and their materials for school board development, along with providing in-person training sessions. Her position will also support the Advocacy/Governmental Relations department and provide support for the continuity and success of the policy services department.

"The increasing policy-related trends and anticipating implementation of ESSA-related issues that schools will face prompted a need for additional resources on our legal team,” said IASB Executive Director Roger Eddy. “Also, our members let us know that they value PRESS Policy Services and Debra will be instrumental in maintaining that effort. With the addition of Debra to the existing team of Kimberly and Maryam, IASB will continue to maintain its quality and innovation in the legal services that it provides to IASB members,” Eddy said.