Charles R. Schmadeke concentrates his practice representing business and governmental clients in litigation and mediation, including cases involving employment issues, civil rights defense, regulatory matters, and contract and tort claims.

With more than 25 years of litigation, mediation and administrative law experience, Mr. Schmadeke has handled professional licensing matters, claims of unfair competition, infringement of intellectual property rights, deceptive business practices, employment discrimination, and cases involving the Uniform Commercial Code and student discipline issues. He has represented and counseled governmental clients on a wide variety of matters, including governance, organization and fiscal issues, civil rights, regulation enforcement, and employment. In addition, on behalf of management, Mr. Schmadeke has negotiated collective bargaining agreements.

Professional Background

Before joining Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP in January 2003, Mr. Schmadeke served in senior positions in Illinois state government. He was the General Counsel to the Illinois State Comptroller, where he advised the Comptroller on constitutional and statutory matters and fiscal affairs, and also conducted cases before the civil service board and handled litigation with cemeteries, funeral homes and other entities regulated by the Comptroller.

Mr. Schmadeke also worked 11 years for the Illinois Attorney General as Chief of the General Law Bureau, which represents all state agencies, state officers and state employees in federal and state litigation. In addition to supervising a staff of 21 attorneys and overseeing an active caseload of thousands of cases before federal and state courts and administrative tribunals, Mr. Schmadeke personally handled many cases including matters involving civil rights, professional regulation and employment issues.

Mr. Schmadeke is the Partner-in-Charge of Hinshaw’s Springfield office.

In the Fall of 2005, Mr. Schmadeke completed intensive training in mediation from the faculty of Pepperdine University School of Law’s top-ranked Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution.

Honors & Awards

  • Recognized by his peers as a Leading Lawyer in the categories of Civil Rights, Municipal, Lobbying & Administrative Law; Civil Rights/Constitutional Law; and Employment Law: Management
  • Rated by Martindale-Hubbell for ethics and legal ability
  • Recognized as a "Super Lawyer" by Illinois Super Lawyers magazine (2005)


  • "Electronically Stored Information and Litigation Hold Letters," National Commission on Correctional Health Care (NCCHC), National Conference, Las Vegas, Nevada, October 22, 2014.
  • "Preparing Effective Answers and Motions in Civil Litigation," Office of the Illinois Attorney General, Springfield, Illinois, May 2011.
  • "Wage—Hour Laws" and "Federal and Illinois Mandated Leave Laws," Community Bankers Association of Illinois seminar "A Guide to Human Resources Law," Springfield, Illinois, June 2008.
  • "Student Legal Issues," for the Illinois Association of School Board Officials, in September 2005.


  • Authored and edited works on administrative law for the Illinois Institute of Continuing Legal Education and he has recently written a chapter on administrative investigations for the administrative law handbook published by the Illinois State Bar Association.


J.D., The John Marshall Law School, 1977

  • Member, John Marshall Law Review
  • Phi Delta Phi honorary

B.A., Northern Illinois University, 1974