Tamara N. Holder is one of Chicago’s rising attorneys and legal analytical stars. She has received recognition and awards from some of the country’s most powerful and political people and organizations. Tamara is a highly sought after public speaker and is often interviewed on television and radio.
Tamara is the principal of The Law Firm of Tamara N. Holder, LLC, founded in 2005. Her work includes: criminal defense, expungement, race discrimination, police brutality, public policy and pro bono practices.
In the legal world, even a dismissed misdemeanor arrest can return to haunt people. Many of Tamara’s clients have thus found themselves facing lifetime bans on employment, education, adoption and even access to credit – all because of a prior arrest record. Seeing the need for outreach in this area, Tamara founded www.xpunged.com, a Chicago-based expungement practice that provides a second chance to those individuals who have expungeable offenses under Illinois law. She also helps ex-offenders seek a Governor’s pardon for non-expungeable offenses.
In 2006, Tamara was invited to work with Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, Sr., Founder and President of the Rainbow PUSH Coalition. With a commitment to pro bono work unparalleled in the City of Chicago, she soon founded The Rainbow PUSH Expungement Clinic at its headquarters. Every Monday night, a crowd gathers for her to review their criminal records and provide advice on expungements and other legal issues.
Tamara works closely with Rev. Jackson in crafting and executing public policy initiatives, together with programs to increase opportunities for minorities and the economically disadvantaged; as well as initiatives designed to get guns off the nation’s streets, help reduce street gang violence, and offer educational opportunities for young people. As a result of her work, she quickly caught the attention of not only Chicago’s civic leaders, but also of those nationwide.
Tamara was the first in the country to expose the railroad industry’s improper employment practices toward those with criminal records. She spearheaded a Congressional inquiry and a hearing before the Congressional Committee of Homeland Security in February of 2007. Then, in July of 2007, Tamara testified as an expert witness before the Congressional Committee of Transportation, Sub-Committee of Maritime and Infrastructure. Her testimony was crucial to preventing passage of an invasive, anti-worker, anti-business piece of legislation calling for mandatory identification cards for transportation workers, a statutory scheme criticized by organized labor and management alike.
Tamara has met privately with Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich on the issue of pardons and Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan on criminal sentencing and expungement laws. She shares relationships with many of the nation’s top political leaders, such as Congressmen John Conyers and Bennie Thompson, to name a few.
Tamara has appeared on CNN Headline News “Prime Time News” and “Nancy Grace” regarding missing Florida child Caylee Anthony; she has also been interviewed by the Fox News Channel (FNC) and locally by WGN, ABC7, NBC5, CBS2 and Fox Chicago. She is a frequent guest on the Reverend Jackson’s weekly “Up Front” cable program as well as radio’s WVON 1690 “The Cliff Kelly Show.” Other radio interviews include “the Sanita Jackson Show,” “the Al Sharpton Show,” Clear Channel’s WGCI-FM, WGN and AM WIND.
Tamara sits on the exclusive board of Women of Power (an organization within the Cook County Sheriff’s Office) alongside some of the state’s most powerful leaders, including Congressmen Danny Davis and Jesse Jackson, Jr., as well as many judges and elected officials. The organization is devoted to helping women within the criminal justice system rehabilitate.
Tamara is often invited to speak at colleges and organizations about the impact a criminal record can have on one’s life. Most recently she has spoken at the College of Lake County, Northeastern Illinois University, Illinois Department of Human Services, Illinois Department of Teen and Family Services, Near North Health Service Corp., Cook County Jail and the Rainbow PUSH Coalition.
Tamara is an early graduate from college (The University of Arizona, 2000) and law school (The John Marshall Law School, 2005). While in law school, she learned criminal trial practice as an intern for the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office in Chicago and contract negotiation and mediation at Miramax Films in Los Angeles. She learned criminal trial practice as an intern for the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office in Chicago and contract negotiation and mediation at Miramax Films in Los Angeles.