While the firm is now under the ownership and management of attorney Heather A. Widell, we would be remiss not to mention and give our deepest appreciation and gratitude to the previous owner of the law office, John F. Lyke Jr., without whom, the Law Offices of Heather A. Widell as they exist today would not have been possible.
The Honorable Judge John Fitzgerald Lyke, Jr., was raised on the South-side of Chicago in the Robert Taylor housing project and Englewood communities. He graduated from Kenwood Academy High School, then enlisted in the United State’s Army. Following Honorable Discharge from the National Guard, John set out to achieve his lifelong dream of becoming a lawyer and attended IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law. John helped pay for law school by working at the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) during the day and going to law school at night.
After earning his law degree from Chicago-Kent in 1990, he then joined the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office as an Assistant State’s Attorney. As a prosecutor, John worked in the Traffic Division, Juvenile Division, Felony Review Division, Homicide/Sex Unit, Grand Jury Unit, Felony Trial Division and as a Special Prosecutor in the Southside Community Prosecutions Division.
After approximately 6 years in the State’s Attorney’s Office, John hung his own shingle and became the owner and founder of The Law Office of John Fitzgerald Lyke, Jr. where his office concentrated in Criminal Defense, Personal Injury, and Civil Rights for the next 18 years.
In August 2014, John hired Heather Widell as his associate attorney. Until John was appointed to the bench a year later, he mentored Heather. John taught Heather all the intricacies of the criminal defense process while strengthening her relationships with Cook County Judges and Assistant State's Attorneys. When John was appointed to the Circuit Court of Cook County, his firm was in high demand and John decided to pass on his life work to his protege, Heather Widell. The Law Offices of Heather A. Widell opened its doors in July of 2015.
Shortly after opening The Law Offices of Heather A. Widell after John was appointed to be a Circuit Court Judge, Heather discovered quickly she could not do everything on her own and turned to her best friend from law school for assistance. Nicholas Economakos brought a civil litigation background and passion for criminal defense. The Law Offices of Heather A. Widell will now strive to not only continue providing passionate and highly effective criminal defense to our clients, but also expand to fight for clients who have suffered civil damages in personal injury and other civil matters.
Our practice would not be complete with the best Office Manager in the business, Cindy Springer-Smith. Cindy brings with her 15 years of paralegal and office manager experience and handles all matters in the office when the attorneys are in court fighting for the clients. Cindy manages the scheduling, contracts, and billing and so much more. Cindy always goes above and beyond to assure that each and every one of our clients receives the necessary attention that they deserve and is always be readily available to answer questions and handle any concerns.