2018 Cook County judicial voting guide: 6th subcircuit

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In the 6th subcircuit, which covers mostly Chicago’s Northwest Side, eight candidates are vying for three judicial seats.

Once elected, there is no difference in responsibility of the countywide judges and subcircuit judges. All voters will have the chance to vote for all countywide candidates, but voters only vote for subcircuit candidates in their own area.

Not sure if you live in the 6th subcircuit? Try using this handy map to find out. Go back to the countywide races here or learn more about our guide below.


Chevere vacancy
Democratic primary:

Kent A. Delgado

Name: Kent A. Delgado (D)
Running for: 6th subcircuit: Chevere vacancy
Bio: Delgado was appointed to a judicial vacancy in January 2017, hearing cases in the probate division. Delgado, who has been a licensed attorney in Illinois since 1996, spent 10 years as a Cook County prosecutor. He then spent 10 years in private practice, specializing in various areas including criminal defense, traffic, and probate work, before being appointed judge. Delgado filed to run for a 6th subcircuit judicial seat in the 2012 primary, but withdrew.
Bar association ratings: Positive
This year: Delgado was found well qualified by the CCL; he is one of only five candidates to receive that rating from the group. The CBA and ISBA found him highly qualified. The CCL wrote Delgado is praised for “his dealings with pro se litigants” and “his ability to manage his probate courtroom and for the sensitivity that he shows to litigants.” The ISBA wrote, “He is considered to be extremely knowledgeable and very approachable with very high integrity.”
Past: Delgado was found qualified by the CCL and CBA in his 2012 run for judge.
Notable: Delgado is endorsed by the Chicago chapter of the Fraternal Order of Police.
Survey Response: The candidate did not return answers to an Injustice Watch questionnaire.

David C. Herrera

Name: David C. Herrera (D)
Running for: 6th subcircuit: Chevere vacancy
Bio: Herrera, who has been a licensed attorney in Illinois since 2000, spent 17 years working as a Cook County prosecutor in various divisions including felony trial, criminal appeals, and juvenile justice. He lost his position in August 2017 during budget cuts and now works as a criminal defense attorney in private practice.
Bar association ratings: Mixed
The CCL found Herrera not qualified, citing Injustice Watch’s reporting about Herrera’s anger issues and temperament. The CBA also found him not qualified, noting temperament concerns. The ISBA found him qualified, writing, “He is considered to have good courtroom ability, to be diligent, and to be creative with his research. Herrera did not respond to requests for comment on his ratings.
Notable: Injustice Watch reported in February that Herrera drew serious concern from supervisors at the prosecutor’s office for difficulty controlling his anger and problems working with female supervisors, including an angry outburst at one female supervisor in which he stood inches from her face as he questioned a decision she had made. Read the full story.
Survey Response: The candidate did not return answers to an Injustice Watch questionnaire.

Sean P. Kelly

Name: Sean P. Kelly (D)
Running for: 6th subcircuit: Chevere vacancy
Bio: Kelly has been a DuPage County prosecutor for more than 10 years. According to his campaign website, he currently works in the felony narcotics unit. He previously worked in the civil child support and felony trial divisions. Kelly was also general counsel for the Haymarket Group, a public affairs consulting firm. He has been licensed as an attorney in Illinois since 2006.
Bar association ratings: Negative
The CCL, ISBA and CBA gave Kelly negative ratings. The CCL noted his relatively short career and lack of complex litigation experience, and the CBA suggested that “additional practice experience would better prepare him.” The ISBA wrote, “While he has tried both juries and bench trials, and is considered to be professional, attorneys interviewed during the investigation questioned his experience in complex cases and with complex litigation.” Kelly, in response to the evaluations, said that while he respected the bar group’s opinions, “I disagree. I guess the word ‘complex’ could have different meanings to different people, I think I’ve certainly been involved in some complex litigation.”
Survey Response: The candidate did not return answers to an Injustice Watch questionnaire.

Republican primary:

There are no Republican candidates running for this seat. 


Cooke vacancy
Democratic primary:

Charles “Charlie” Beach

Name: Charles “Charlie” Beach (D)
Running for: 6th subcircuit: Cooke vacancy
Bio: Beach was appointed as a judge in the 6th subcircuit in September 2017, and he is running to keep the seat. He currently sits in traffic court. Beach was a trial attorney for 17 years, mostly in private practice at his own firm, focusing on DUI and driving cases. He spent one year as a Cook County assistant public defender and one year as a law clerk to an appellate court judge. Beach is the co-founder of a CBA pro bono program that helps motorists get their driving privileges reinstated.
Bar association ratings: Positive
The CCL, CBA, and ISBA found Beach qualified. The CBA noted Beach is “well regarded by lawyers who appear before him for his knowledge of the law, legal ability, diligence, and compassion.”
Notable: He is endorsed by the Chicago chapter of the Fraternal Order of Police.
Survey Response: In response to an Injustice Watch survey question about the most pressing issues facing the justice system, Beach wrote, “The justice system has a credibility problem and the election and appointment of good judges are key to restoring confidence.”(Full survey)

Ed Underhill

Name: Ed Underhill (D)
Running for: 6th subcircuit: Cooke vacancy
Bio: Underhill has worked at the law firm Masuda Funai for more than 30 years, where he practices civil litigation and criminal defense. He tries cases in both state and federal court. During and directly after law school, he briefly worked as a prosecutor in DeKalb County. Underhill does pro bono work through the Legal Aid Foundation and Bucktown Community Organization. Underhill also ran for judge in 2016.
Bar association ratings: Positive
This year: The CCL, CBA, and ISBA found Underhill qualified. The CCL noted Underhill “is praised for his research and writing skills” and “has a professional demeanor.”
Past: In 2016, the CBA and CCL found Underhill qualified.
Survey Response: The candidate did not return answers to an Injustice Watch questionnaire.

Andrea M. Webber

Name: Andrea M. Webber (D)
Running for: 6th subcircuit: Cooke vacancy
Bio: Webber has been licensed to practice law since 2002. She spent most of that time in the office of the Cook County Public Defender, including four years in the homicide task force division. She previously worked in the felony trial and traffic divisions. She teaches trial advocacy and volunteers teaching constitutional law to middle schoolers.
Bar association ratings: Positive
The CCL, ISBA, and CBA found Webber qualified. The CBA noted her experience trying complex cases. The ISBA wrote she, “is widely praised by attorneys for her legal knowledge in complex matters and strong work ethics.”
Survey Response: The candidate did not return answers to an Injustice Watch questionnaire.

Republican primary:

There are no Republican candidates running for this seat. 


Lopez Cepero vacancy
Democratic primary:

Stephanie K. Miller

Name: Stephanie K. Miller (D)
Running for: 6th subcircuit: Lopez Cepero vacancy
Bio: Miller was appointed to the bench in January of 2017 and now presides in the pretrial division, setting bail for defendants. Miller spent 16 years as an assistant state’s attorney in Cook County, where she worked in numerous divisions.  Miller was also an attorney and Guardian Ad Litem with the Cook County Public Guardian’s Office. Miller is the co-founder and a current board member of the Lesbian and Gay Bar Association of Chicago.
Bar association ratings: Positive
The CBA found Miller qualified, writing that she has “extensive trial and court experience” and that she “is dedicated to public service and is actively engaged in community and bar association work.” The CCL and ISBA also found her qualified.
Notable: Miller has been endorsed by the Chicago chapter of the Fraternal Order of the Police. Miller made news when on Feb. 18, a Chicago man, who is now in custody, shouted threats at Miller from his car while she was campaigning and later threw a snowball through the window of her home.
Survey Response: In response to an Injustice Watch questionnaire, Miller highlighted her extensive courtroom experience, stating that her “background on and off the bench [has] prepared [her] to continue to serve as judge.” (Full survey)

Linda Perez

Linda Perez

Name: Linda Perez (D)
Running for: 6th subcircuit: Lopez Cepero vacancy
Bio: Perez is currently a Cook County assistant public defender in the felony trial division in Markham.  She has been with the office nearly 16 years, working in the criminal and civil divisions.
Bar association ratings: Mixed
The CBA and CCL found Perez qualified. The ISBA found her not qualified, writing, “She is considered to be a hard-working zealous advocate. Concerns were raised, however about her lack of recent litigation and the lack of complex litigation, as well as the depth and breadth of her total experience.” Perez did not respond to a request for comment on her ratings.
Survey Response: Responding to an Injustice Watch questionnaire, Perez wrote that her understanding of the “frustrations that members of the public feel when dealing with the overcrowded courtrooms and when they are not adequately informed regarding the status of their case,” will help her be a good judge. (Full survey)

Republican primary:

There are no Republican candidates running for this seat. 


Injustice Watch has spent the past several months scouring the public record about the candidates. We’ve looked through everything from the candidates’ past employment to court records and campaign contributions. We’ve studied past disciplinary trouble, and we’ve collected the recommendations of the three major bar associations: the Chicago Bar Association (CBA), the Chicago Council of Lawyers (CCL) and the Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA). We also offered each candidate the opportunity to complete a survey offering information detailing their experience and reasons for running. (All survey responses have been uploaded online.)

That research has led us to publish several individual articles, as well as this guide to help voters go to the polls better informed. (As a news organization, we are not endorsing any candidates, merely gathering information to help voters judge for themselves.)

Candidates file for a specific race: The candidates declare which seat they seek, and some candidates end up with no opposition at all. With the exception of a few suburban subcircuit contests, winning the Democratic primary amounts to securing the judicial post, as most candidates will face no Republican opposition in the November general election.

The candidates are running to fill openings created on the bench by a judge’s retirement, resignation, or death. Several of the candidates were given temporary appointments by the Illinois Supreme Court to fill vacancies up through the election, but each of them must compete in the elections to win a full six-year term.