Erika Harold is a litigation attorney at Meyer Capel, P.C. in Champaign, Illinois, where she handles complex commercial litigation matters and disputes involving wills, estates and trusts.
Prior to this, Erika worked as an attorney in the litigation groups of Sidley Austin LLP and Burke, Warren, MacKay & Serritella, P.C., representing businesses in commercial disputes and advising religious institutions in matters involving First Amendment protections.
Ms. Harold has devoted her professional career to service. Before entering the legal profession, Erika was crowned Miss America 2003. In this role, she championed the community service platform Preventing Youth Violence and Bullying, the Children’s Miracle Network, and the USO, a nonprofit organization dedicated to serving men and women in the military. Ms. Harold continues to support these causes and many more, frequently speaking at conferences and symposiums, including the Lake County Juvenile Justice Council’s conference on bullying and Loyola University Chicago School of Law’s Cyberbullying and Sexting Symposium, sponsored by the Children’s Legal Rights Journal.
Ms. Harold received her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Illinois, where she was born and raised. Erika received her Juris Doctorate from Harvard Law School, graduating in 2007.
Since receiving her J.D., Ms. Harold has made a name for herself in the Illinois legal community. Erika taught students about the U.S. legal system as part of the Lawyers in the Classroom program, coordinated by Constitutional Rights Foundation Chicago. She also has coached students in the City-Wide Mock Trial Competition, sponsored by the Chicago Coalition for Law-Related Education, and will be part of the teaching faculty for Harvard Law School’s 2017 Trial Advocacy Workshop.
Aside from working with students, Ms. Harold also serves on the Illinois Supreme Court Committee on Equality. In 2014, Erika was a candidate for Congress in Illinois’ 13th District, where she earned almost 42% of the vote in a 3-person race and was endorsed by the Chicago Tribune for being “passionate and forthright” and “saying things that need to be said.” Erika was also named by the American Conservative Union as one of the Top 10 Conservatives Under 40.
Ms. Harold has served on the Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism since 2017.