Jorge Cazares is a Director and Partner in Pugh, Jones & Johnson's Litigation Practice Group. His practice includes the representation of clients (in particular, management) in contract and business disputes, products liability, defamation, major personal injury defense, civil rights, employment discrimination, labor disputes and arbitrations, local governmental defense, RICO, bankruptcy, real estate and commercial litigation matters.
Jorge rejoined the Firm after serving as General Counsel for the Chicago Housing Authority. As the first Latino to serve as General Counsel for the Chicago Housing Authority, he oversaw all of the agency’s legal affairs and provided advice and counsel to the CHA’s Board of Commissioners, senior management and employees. Jorge also supervised a staff of over 50 employees which included over 20 in-house lawyers who provided legal assistance on the complicated and sophisticated real estate and finance transactions involved in creating mixed income communities. The Legal Department also represented the CHA in litigation matters, ranging from personal injury lawsuits to decades-old federal court consent decrees to providing advice and counsel on compliance with HUD and other regulatory requirements.
Jorge also served as the Chicago Housing Authority's Ethics Officer in charge of supervising compliance with the agency’s ethics policies as well as other applicable Federal and State ethics policies. Additionally, he supervised the agency’s Office of the Inspector General, which investigated reports of possible fraud and waste of CHA’s resources by the agency’s employees, residents or contractors. He also supervised the agency’s ADA compliance department as well as its One-Strike Program. Jorge currently serves as the CHA's Ethics Officer and EEO Officer.
Prior to his tenure at the Chicago Housing Authority, Jorge practiced at Pugh, Jones & Johnson since 1992. He has tried various jury and bench trials and has argued before the United Stated Circuit Court of Appeals and the Illinois Court of Appeals.
Represented global law firm in defense of legal malpractice and related claims arising from the firm’s representation of a hedge fund and its related entities alleging that the firm’s failure to structure, draft and negotiate required loan and security agreements caused it irreparable harm. Plaintiffs alleged that as a result of the firm’s failures, they never received a legal, valid and enforceable interest in the collateral and consequently suffered losses in excess of $146 million. The matter settled just prior to impaneling a jury.
Mr. Cazares has participated as a panel member in various professional organizations. He has received several awards and has been recognized for his work for various charitable organizations. Mr. Cazares was named a 2011 Business Leader of Color by Chicago United. Mr. Cazares has been selected as a Leading Lawyer from 2012-2016 by the Leading Lawyers Network.