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Kelly A. Tautges

Pro Bono Counsel & Director


Kelly Tautges serves as Faegre Drinker’s pro bono counsel and leads the professional team that manages and supports the firm’s pro bono practice and community service activities.

Pro Bono Experience

Before joining the firm, Kelly was the Chicago Bar Foundation’s (CBF) Director of Pro Bono & Court Advocacy. She led the organization’s pro bono efforts, including work with lawyers, law firms, corporations, the courts, and pro bono and legal aid organizations to maximize the impact of pro bono work in ensuring access to justice. She also led the CBF’s advocacy efforts with the courts and administrative agencies for policies promoting access to justice, including policies that make the courts and administrative agencies more accessible for people without lawyers.

Legal Experience

Kelly began her legal career practicing civil and commercial litigation with Vedder Price in Chicago for six years, where she also served on the firm’s Pro Bono Committee and represented children and families pro bono in adoption, delinquency and guardianship proceedings.

Faculty Positions

  • Loyola University of Chicago School of Law — Adjunct Professor, Access to Justice Practicum, 2015-17; Legal Writing & Analysis, 2007-11; Appellate Advocacy, Child Law Section, 2006
  • University of Illinois College of Law, Chicago Program — Adjunct Professor, Access to Justice Practicum, 2014-17


Bar Admissions


Court Admissions

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois


Loyola University Chicago School of Law
J.D. cum laude, Children's Legal Rights Journal (executive articles editor) (2001)

Marquette University
B.A. in Social Work (1997)

Insights & Events

Leadership & Community

Professional Associations

  • Minnesota State Bar Association — Access to Justice Committee, Co-Chair, 2018-Present
  • Minnesota Supreme Court Triage Portal Advisory Committee — 2018-2020 
  • Association of Pro Bono Counsel
  • Minnesota State Bar Association

Firm Leadership

  • Chair, Pro Bono Committee


  • National Association of Pro Bono Professionals (NAPBPRO) — Tanya Neiman Pro Bono Professional of the Year Award, 2022
  • Faegre Drinker — Pro Bono Honor Roll, 2020-23
  • Faegre Baker Daniels — Pro Bono Honor Roll, 2018-19
  • Association of Corporate Counsel, Chicago Chapter — Thurgood Marshall Award of Excellence, 2016
  • Loyola University Chicago School of Law — Distinguished Service Award, 2012
  • Chicago Daily Law Bulletin — 40 Illinois Attorneys Under 40 to Watch, 2012
  • Vedder Price — Award for Outstanding Pro Bono Contribution, 2003
Awards Methodology
No aspect of these recognitions has been approved by the highest court of any state.
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