Lise T. Spacapan is a tireless advocate, creative problem-solver, and thought leader. She is experienced in managing large, diverse organizations in which substantive challenges require skills in organizational relations, state and federal regulations, legislative process, ethics and compliance, internal investigations, hiring, media communication, union processes, procurement, contracts, and a wide variety of state and federal litigation. She most recently served as General Counsel, Office of the Governor, Bruce Rauner. She advised the Governor and members of senior administration staff on wide-ranging matters of ethics and compliance, employment, internal investigations, personnel, litigation, and regulatory and legislative initiatives. The Governor’s Office oversees approximately 50 agencies, boards and commissions throughout the State of Illinois, with a work force of roughly 45,000. She directly oversaw a staff of 11 lawyers and one assistant, and held dotted line oversight of the general counsels who served in the agencies.

Lise previously served as the General Counsel to the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services. She directly managed a law department of 90 people across the state and served as a member of Executive Staff, advising an agency of 2,500 employees. She represented the agency in matters involving contracts, relationships with vendors, legislators, and federal and state court matters. She served as Interim Director of DCFS in June 2017.

Lise was a partner at three national law firms: Kirkland & Ellis (1984-1997); Jenner & Block (1997-2013); Husch Blackwell (2013-2015). Her clients were predominantly Fortune 50 companies. She was lead counsel on class actions, breach of contract, product liability, business disputes involving failed joint ventures, warranty and supply chain contracts, toxic tort and environmental matters, antitrust concerns, lender liability, insurance coverage disputes, and employment/whistleblower lawsuits in courts in: Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Georgia, New Mexico, California, Colorado, New York, Florida, Louisiana, Texas and Virginia. She has argued in the Federal Courts of Appeal for the Seventh and Eleventh Circuits and in the Illinois Appellate Court; and has filed amicus briefs on behalf of chemical companies and the American Chemistry Council in the United States Supreme Court.

Practice Areas

  • Complex Litigation & Appeals
  • Compliance & Corporate Governance
  • Public Law
  • Employment Counseling & Litigation


  • LL.M, Health Law, DePaul College of Law (2014)
  • J.D., DePaul College of Law; Editor-in-Chief, DePaul Law Review (1983-1984)
  • B.S., Vanderbilt University (1979)

Admissions and Qualifications

  • Illinois
  • U.S. District Courts for the N.D. of Illinois (Trial Bar) and S. D. of Illinois, E.D. of Wisconsin
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth, Seventh, Tenth and Eleventh Circuits

Prior Experience

  • Office of the Illinois Governor, Bruce Rauner (General Counsel, August 2017-January 2019
  • Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (General Counsel, August 2015-August 2017
  • Husch Blackwell (April 2013-August 2015)
  • Jenner & Block (September 1997-April 2013); (Co-Chair of Product Liability Practice Group 2006-2013)