Joe's government regulation practice emphasizes land use, zoning, historic preservation and other regulatory matters; development incentives; acquisition of publicly-owned property; liquor and business licensing issues; building and life-safety code compliance; right-of-way adjustments; and subdivisions.

Over the last 27 years, Joe has obtained land use, subdivision, and license approvals for a broad range of land uses, from single-family homes to major industrial facilities. He has obtained a variety of government approvals for numerous significant developments in Chicago and surrounding municipalities. Joe also has considerable experience in affordable and supportive housing developments.

Prior to practicing government regulatory law, Joe served as a Zoning Planner with the Chicago Zoning Board of Appeals, from 1978 to 1987.

Joe received his B.A. in Political Science from the University of Illinois and his J.D. from DePaul University College of Law where he was a member of the DePaul Law Review.

Joe is a member of the Chicago and American Bar Associations. He provides pro bono counsel for a number of civic and social service organizations and holds leadership positions in municipal governance organizations, including Woodstock Plan Commission (Member, 1994-1995), Advisory Committee on the Historic Woodstock Square, the Chicago Mayor’s Business License Reform Committee, and the Chicago Permitting and Inspection Task Force.

Joe has been awarded an AV® Peer Review Rating from Martindale-Hubbell, its highest rating for ethical standards and legal ability.


All Service Areas


  • DePaul University College of Law (1990)
  • University of Illinois - Chicago (B.A., Political Science) (1984)


  • Federal - Northern District of Illinois
  • State - Illinois

Notable Matters

  • Assisted The Chicago Architecture Biennial with the negotiation and preparation of right-of-entry and exhibition agreements allowing placement of Biennial exhibits in various properties owned by the City of Chicago.
  • Assisted client in negotiation and preparation of a construction maintenance agreement with the City of Chicago which allowed the client to demolish and reconstruct extensive infrastructure improvements under and over the North Michigan Avenue and North Water Street rights-of-way adjacent to its property in connection with the construction of the new Apple store along the north bank of the Chicago River.
  • Assisted client in obtaining special use approval to allow the operation of a medical cannabis dispensary in Chicago's Norwood Park neighborhood. Approval was obtained over the opposition of numerous objectors and the local Alderman.
  • Assisted Chick-fil-A, Inc. in securing approvals for the location of a Chick-fil-A restaurant in a landmark building on North State Street in the City of Chicago.
  • Represented Swedish Covenant Hospital in the amendment of its planned development and related matters needed to allow the construction of a new ambulatory surgery center and medical office building.
  • Assisted a private/non-profit development venture in securing approvals for the construction of two affordable residential developments for senior citizens in under-served areas of Chicago’s South Side.
  • Assisted Columbia College in securing approvals for construction of its new, state-of-the-art media production center in Chicago's South Loop.
  • Assisted the property owner in securing approvals for the conversion of the former Lakeshore Athletic Club building to residential use.
  • Represented AIA Chicago Foundation in securing approvals for the construction of a monument honoring Daniel Burnham at the junction of Grant Park and Burnham Park on the Chicago lakefront.
  • Represented property owners in obtaining the entitlements necessary to permit the construction of two rental residential and retail high-rise buildings in Chicago’s central business district.
  • Assisted the property owners in securing approval for the construction of an addition to the historic Bellinger Cottage located at 2121 North Hudson Avenue in Chicago.
  • Represented the property owner in the conversion of the Palmolive Building to luxury condominium residences.
  • Represented the Trustees of the Graceland Cemetery Improvement Fund in securing approvals for a major streetscape improvement project at Graceland Cemetery.
  • Represented the property owner in the restoration of the Hotel Allegro (formerly the Bismarck Hotel), the Palace Theater, and the Metropolitan Office Building.
  • Represented the Field Museum of Natural History concerning a number of local government regulatory matters in connection with the museum’s expansion program.
  • Provide ongoing representation to Compass Group USA, Inc., a national operator of food services facilities, in connection with Illinois business license, liquor license and code compliance matters.

Speeches and Publications

  • Profiled in the Leading Lawyers Magazine–Real Estate Edition for 2017.
  • “Zoning Issues: A Developer's Perspective,” Commercial Real Estate (IICLE, 2004 Edition; 2007, 2010 and 2013 Supplements) (with co-author Jack Guthman).
  • “Processing a Land Use Application in the City of Chicago,” Illinois Land Use Law (IICLE, 2004 Edition; 2007, 2011 and 2013 Supplements) (with co-author Jack Guthman).

Professional Affiliations

  • Chicago Bar Association


Community Involvement

  • Lambda Alpha International, Ely Chapter