A Presentation by University of Illinois Chicago School of Law Dean Nicky Boothe

“Lawyers and Society – A 2023 Updated Social Contract”

A Presentation by University of Illinois Chicago School of Law Dean Nicky Boothe

 In The Social Contract, eighteenth century French political philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau suggested that all participants in a society must surrender an equal amount of rights and impose the same degree of duties in return for the privileges and benefits of freedom and a free society. The legal profession has established a form of “social contract” because of the critical role it plays in the governance of a free society. Under that “contract,” in return for the substantial privileges attorneys enjoy, we must surrender a proportionate amount of rights and assume a proportionate degree of duties to society. For the privileges accompanying our lives as lawyers, there is therefore a proportionate responsibility to use the skills we possess to serve society. As we adjust to life “post-2020,” we have an opportunity (and perhaps a responsibility) to revisit our social contract with society and determine where revisions and/or amendments are needed. In her talk, “Lawyers and Society – A 2023 Updated Social Contract,” UIC Law Dean Nicky Boothe will discuss some potential revisions/amendments to renew our traditional social contract.

Dean Boothe became Dean of the University of Illinois Chicago School of Law in June 2022. A leader in legal education and experienced litigator, Dean Boothe was previously a tenured member of the Florida A&M University College of Law faculty, where she taught since 2006. Before joining UIC Law, she was a Visiting Professor of Law at the Boston University School of Law. During her time with FAMU, she served as the Interim Dean of the College of Law, as well as the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs. Before entering legal academia, Dean Boothe was a defense litigator for almost a decade.

A nationally recognized leader in the field of ethics and professionalism in law, Dean Boothe has served as a Fellow for the National Institute for Teaching Ethics and Professionalism and as a member of the Florida Supreme Court Special Committee on Professionalism. A member of the American Bar Association Civil Rights Litigation Committee and the Order of Barristers, she is a certified speaker by the Florida Department of Insurance and holds certifications for interviewing and counseling in the legal field.

A frequent speaker, panelist, and commentator, Dean Boothe’s work has been honored with numerous awards, including the Silver and Bronze Pro Bono awards from the Florida Supreme Court for her participation with the Florida Juvenile Dependency System. She has been recognized as FAMU School of Law Faculty of the Year and student-selected hooding ceremony representative of the year.

An avid scholar, her scholarship addresses issues of legal professionalism and ethics, social media and human trafficking and has been published in numerous law reviews and journals, including the Georgetown Journal of Gender and the Law, Brigham Young University Journal of Public Law, Nebraska Law Review, Pace Law Review, Loyola Law Review, and American University Journal of Gender, Social Policy & the Law, among many other publications. Her op-eds have appeared in local and national publications.

Dean Boothe’s work also reflects a longstanding focus on antiracism; diversity, equity and inclusion; student well-being, and community service. She was a co-founder in 2020 of the Florida Law Schools’ Consortium on Racial Justice. She recently developed a “Mindfulness in Life and Law” seminar and is also a member of the Mindfulness in Law Society.

Professor Boothe earned her JD, cum laude, from Florida State University and her Bachelor of Science from the University of Florida.

January 24, 2023

Union League Club
65 W. Jackson Blvd.
Chicago, IL 60604

11:30 a.m. Registration
12:00 p.m. Lunch and Program
1:30 p.m. Adjournment

Tickets are $60 for members and $65 for guests

Cancellation Policy: If you need to cancel your reservation, please email attorneys@lawyersclubchicago.org 72 hours in advance of the event to avoid receiving an invoice or to receive a refund if you have prepaid.

Hourly Schedule

11:30 am -
12:00 pm -
Lunch and Program
1:30 pm -


Jan 24 2023


11:30 am - 1:30 pm




Union League Club
65 West Jackson Boulevard, Chicago, IL 60604


The Lawyers Club of Chicago
(312) 804-9889
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