My roots to the Southside are deep, but where I grew up was divided between two places.

My father, Thomas J. Mescall is from the Southside of Chicago. He attended St. Leo High School. He attended the University of Albuquerque where he met my mom.

My mother, Mary Molina, is from Albuquerque New Mexico.

My parents divorced when I was 3, so I was raised in Albuquerque, New Mexico, but I spent every holiday and my entire summers at my Grandparents’ home in St. Cajetan Parish, where my father presently resides.

I remember spending my summers at the Kennedy Park Pool, being a frequent patron of the Purple Cow and being spoiled rotten by my grandparents, Jim and Helen Mescall. My older brother, Tommy Mescall named my Irish grandfather “Como Esta.” That’s right, we called our grandfather, how are you. There was some controversy when my father brought my mother home to meet the parents. My mother is 100% Hispanic. My father is 100% Irish. My grandfather wanted my brother to feel accepted and loved, and he endearingly tried to introduce him to Spanish phrases. Well, after repeating “como esta” so many times to my brother, poor Tommy started to call our grandfather como esta, and the name stuck. Pretty soon every neighborhood kid on 113th & Washtenaw knew CPD Patrolman James Mescall as “como esta aka como”. His father, my great grandfather, was a CPD Detective killed in the line of duty at the hands of a drunk driver.

My brother Tommy and I outside
our Grandparents’ home in
St. Cajetan’s Parish (summer of 1983)

I attended St. Pius X High School and graduated in 1995. I began running track & field in the 3rd grade. Although I was offered track scholarships at the University of New Mexico and other universities on the West coast, my Dad told me about how he saw a beautiful University while visiting his friend in Coral Gables, Florida. Something called me to that University. By the time I expressed interest, the deadlines had passed on obtaining any scholarship money, and I knew it was very unlikely a Division 1 school like Miami would ever offer me any money to compete for them. I knew running at this level would be extremely challenging, but something was calling me to take on the challenge, and so I headed off, an 18 year old kid, across the country from Albuquerque New Mexico to The University of Miami, Florida. I walked on the track team my freshman year, and I managed through hard work, perseverance and passion to earn an athletic scholarship for the next 3 years. I competed in the Women’s heptathlon comprised of 7 events: the 100m hurdles, long jump, high jump, javelin, 200m dash, shotput and 800m. In 1997, the NCAA integrated women’s pole vault as an event. My coach explained I had no choice—I had to learn how to pole vault. It was college track that I learned the true lessons of hard work, discipline, teamwork, perseverance and overcoming our biggest obstacle, ourselves.

We were two-time Big East Conference Champions during my tenure. My senior year I was voted co-Captain of the Women’s track & field team. My teammates became more than friends, they became family. I graduated with honors in English with minors in philosophy and broadcast journalism

After graduating from The University of Miami in 1999, I drove to my grandmother’s house in St. Cajetan where I lived with her as I attended The John Marshall Law School.

I met my husband, Peter M. Kramer on the first day of law school where we were assigned to the same L1 class.

I graduated from John Marshall in 2.5 years. I took the New Mexico Bar exam in February of 2002, where I was soon thereafter sworn in as an Assistant District Attorney in Albuquerque New Mexico.

As a young prosecutor, I started my career in Metropolitan Court, where I specialized in misdemeanor D.U.I. and Domestic Violence cases. I did numerous bench trials and 20 misdemeanor jury trials.

I then applied to become as assistant in the Felony Crimes Against Children Division. I worked tirelessly under the supervision of an amazing champion for children’s rights and Saint of a person, Lisa Trabaudo. I was single, no children, able to devote all of my energy to defend child victims of rape, incest and physical abuse resulting in death and permanent injury. Mrs. Trabaudo was a tremendous mentor who took me under her wing and taught me countless lessons about trial work and the true meaning of being a dedicated public servant.

The most challenging, complex as well as the most rewarding work I have done in my career, I did in the Crimes Against Children Division.

Through hard work and dedication, I was the youngest person in the District Attorney’s Office to achieve the rank of Senior Trial Attorney.

I tried 26 felony jury trials in this Division, 80% of which were child rape cases involving children under the age of 12. The other 20% were child physical abuse cases resulting in either death or permanent disability such as blindness.

After practicing law for 6 years in New Mexico, I realized that one of the most dangerous criminals is time. Time is a thief, and I knew if I didn’t stop working at the rate I was, life was going to pass me by. I returned to Chicago, to my Peter…and it was true love because I had to take the Illinois bar exam.

My mother, Mary Molina and
my brother Tommy and I the day
I was sworn into the New Mexico State bar,
Santa Fe New Mexico 2002

I was fortunate enough to be hired by The Cook County State’s Attorney’s office, where I was considered a lateral hire. My first assignment was the felony review unit. After several years in the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office, I rose to the rank of a first chair felony trial assistant, which is the highest rank one can receive as a trial lawyer in our office of approximately 750 prosecutors.

In Illinois, I have tried 62 felony jury trials, and 100s of bench trials and motions.

As a first chair trial attorney, I am responsible for managing a Court call of several hundred felony cases and overseeing and helping two other assistant State’s attorneys assigned to the Courtroom. I personally handle all the first degree murder cases and any case involving a deceased victim.

I am currently assigned to one of the most challenging Courtrooms in Cook County, namely that of The Hon. Vincent M. Gaughan.

I currently live in Christ the King Parish with my husband Peter Kramer and our 4 wonderful children: Regina (10), Abel (8), Therese Mary (7)
and Walter James (3).

We are active parishioners at Christ The King.

I have followed my calling, and it has led me to the honorable career of making the community a safer place.

I believe my calling is shifting to a different role in public service, the Judiciary.

I believe in defending the Constitution, honoring People’s rights and fighting for Justice.

If it is so meant to be, I would like to work for you, the People, in the capacity of a Judge.

I am grateful for the opportunity to run for Judge, and I thank you for your support.