James Simon

Adjunct Professor


James L. Simon, Esq., has over 35 years of professional experience in advising, counseling, and representing clients in diverse complex commercial litigation, business transactions, and dispute resolution. Currently, Simon serves as city attorney for the City of Urbana. Prior thereto, he was a partner in several Chicago-area law firms and served as general counsel for an investment firm. Simon is licensed to practice before the Illinois Supreme Court, United States District Court for the Northern District, Illinois, the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, and the United States Supreme Court. He has also represented clients in complex litigation in a number of federal district courts and circuit courts of appeal.

Simon has represented a diverse clientele including business organizations, large healthcare institutions, trade associations, standards-setting organizations, not-for-profit organizations, and units of local government. His substantive experience includes matters involving anti-trust, bankruptcy, commercial collection, condominium governance and management, constitutional, construction, contract, consumer fraud, corporate and institutional policy development and implementation, corporate governance, creditors’ rights, defamation, deceptive business practices, discrimination, embezzlement, employment, equipment leasing and financing, healthcare, harassment, landlord-tenant, local government, mineral lease, misappropriation of trade secrets and proprietary information, misrepresentation, real estate sale and acquisition, and trust and estate issues.

In the field of alternative dispute resolution, Simon has served as a neutral and as an advocate in numerous mediations and holds a certificate in mediation training. He has also served as panel chair in over 100 small-case arbitrations for the Circuit Court of Cook County’s mandatory-annexed arbitration program. Prior to coming to the University, Professor Simon taught Negotiations Skills & Strategies at DePaul University College of Law for nine years, lectured on the subject in in MCLE-accredited courses in the Chicago metropolitan area, and team-taught in the 40-hour MCLE-approved mediation training program sponsored by DePaul University Center for Dispute Resolution. He also was instrumental in the creation of the mediation in mortgage foreclosure program for the Nineteenth Judicial Circuit, Lake County, Illinois which commenced operation in 2013.

Simon earned his JD degree magna cum laude honors from DePaul University College of Law in 1977. He received a BFA degree in industrial design from the University of Illinois.


JD DePaul University College of Law
BFA University of Illinois


Negotiation Skills and Strategies