James D. (“Jimmy”) Shanahan is co-chair of Taft’s public finance practice. He has served as bond counsel, underwriter’s counsel, bank counsel, issuer counsel, disclosure counsel and other special counsel on a variety of tax-exempt and taxable financings. Jimmy has experience working on financings for schools, towns, counties, water and sanitary districts, airport authorities, park districts and other entities which have the ability to access the tax-exempt market including private activity financings. Jimmy has worked on financings in an aggregate of over $3 billion, issuers large and small, including the Indiana Bond Bank, the Indiana Finance Authority, the State of Illinois, the City of Chicago, and the Illinois Finance Authority.

Jimmy also counsels clients in non-transaction public finance matters. He has argued successfully on behalf of clients before the Indiana Tax Court, has represented clients in SEC and IRS regulatory reviews, and has worked with clients to create and develop disclosure practices and procedures mandated by the SEC.

All Service Areas


  • Indiana University Maurer School of Law (2008)
  • Marquette University, M.S., Applied Economics
  • Marquette University, B.S., magna cum laude, Economics


  • State - Indiana
  • State - Illinois

Speeches and Publications

  • “School Construction Finance,” Ball State University – EDAD 688 School Facilities, June 11, 2015.
  • “Mardi Gras 2015: A Celebration of School Finance,” IASBO Region 9 Meeting, Feb. 20, 2015.
  • “Cornucopia of Public Finance,” IASBO Region 1 Meeting, Nov. 19, 2014.
  • “Capital Needs in Current Legislative and Political Climate,” Wabash Valley Educational Service Center, Oct. 16, 2014, Workshop.
  • “Opportunities in Debt & Capital Markets Financing,” 2015 CDFA Illinois Financing Roundtable Conference – Development Finance Best Practices: Programs & Tools that Work, Chicago, Ill., May 2014.
  • “Leveraging Assets, Maximizing Resources and Building the Illinois Economy,” 2014 CDFA Illinois Financing Roundtable Conference – Illinois Infrastructure Imperative, Chicago, Ill., May 2014.
  • “Successful Bond Financing Strategies in the State,” 2013 CDFA Illinois Financing Roundtable Conference – Maximizing Development Finance in the Prairie State, Chicago, Ill., May 2013.
  • “Overview of Municipal Finance,” Indiana Continuing Legal Education Forum Seminar – Municipal Public Finance, Indianapolis, Ind., May 2012.
  • “Illinois School Finance: The Referendum,” Governor’s State University (Administrators’ Academy No. 682) – Planning a Successful School District Referendum, Frankfort, Ill., Oct. 1, 2010.

Professional Affiliations

  • National Association of Bond Lawyers


  • Indiana Municipal Lawyers Association


Community Involvement

  • National School Boards Association, Council of School Attorneys


  • Knights of Columbus