Joe Tilson is a founding partner and serves as Co-Chair of the law firm of Meckler Bulger Tilson Marick & Pearson LLP in Chicago, Illinois. A recognized authority in the area of labor and employment law, Joe represents employers in large scale employment litigation and labor arbitrations. In the past thirty years, he has tried over one hundred and fifty jury and non-jury cases before the full range of courts, administrative agencies and labor arbitrators. His clients include a number of the country’s largest public and private employers, and Illinois’ most prestigious universities, whom he represents in both traditional labor law matters and employment litigation. Joe is nationally known for his knowledge and success in handling large wage and hour class action cases, but he also has vast experience in collective bargaining involving large and complex bargaining units.
Joe has been recognized as one of the top labor and employment lawyers in Chicago. He was named the 2014 Chicago Employment Law “Lawyer of the Year” by Best Lawyers for the second time in the last four years; he was named one of the Nation's Most Powerful Employment Attorneys by Human Resource Executive and Lawdragon; and he has consistently achieved a Tier 1 Labor and Employment ranking from Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business. Joe is a frequent lecturer, author and bar association leader. He regularly speaks on labor and employment issues for the American Bar Association, Practicing Law Institute, Northwestern University's Corporate Council Institute, Chicago-Kent College of Law and many other educational institutions and associations.
Joe is a Fellow of the College of Labor & Employment Lawyers, and is the former Chair of the American Bar Association’s Federal Labor Standards Legislation Committee. He currently serves on the ABA’s Council, the governing body of the ABA’s Labor and Employment Law Section. Joe also serves on the Board of Managers of the YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago.
Admitted to Practice:
- Illinois (1979)
- Meckler Bulger Tilson Marick & Pearson (1994 – Present)
- Katten Muchin (1989 – 1994)
- Pope Ballard (1980 – 1989)
- Clerk for Judge Stephanie Seymour of the tenth Circuit (1979)