Abner Mikva served five terms in the Illinois House and in all three branches of the federal government. He was White House Counsel for President Bill Clinton, and, prior to that, Judge and Chief Judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Previously, he served in the U.S. House of Representatives for five terms.
Before beginning his public service, Judge Mikva practiced law in Chicago, where he was a partner of the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice Arthur Goldberg. He received his law degree from the University of Chicago, cum laude; was editor of the Law Review; and was a member of the Order of the Coif and Phi Beta Kappa. Judge Mikva clerked for U. S. Supreme Court Justice Sherman Minton.
Currently, Judge Mikva is Lecturer and Senior Director of the Mandel Legal Aid Clinic at the University of Chicago Law School. He is the author of texts on the legislative process, and co-author of a political science textbook on the U.S. Congress, entitled: The American Congress: The First Branch.
Zoe Mikva began her career teaching elementary school. Since teaching in Evanston, Chicago and Washington, D.C. for a total of 14 years, she has been an advocate for public education and civic participation for several decades. While in D.C., Ms. Mikva also served as a special assistant to the Administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, started her own business helping nonprofits that lobby Congress, and was Director of Development for the Advocacy Institute. Most recently, she developed the Chicago Schools Policy Luncheon series for Business & Professional People for the Public Interest.
As a volunteer, Ms. Mikva tutored for the Washington Literacy Council and held leadership positions in the PTA, Operation Head Start, and the Illinois ACLU. She was an elected representative of the District Education Council of the National Education Association and served on the board of directors of Micah House, which shelters previously homeless women. Currently, Ms. Mikva is an elected member of a local school council in Chicago and, along with Judge Mikva, guides the Mikva Challenge Grant Foundation, a nonprofit organization devoted to providing Chicago high school students with opportunities to participate in the political process.