Deadra Woods Stokes

Assistant Clinical Professor of Law

Deadra Woods Stokes joined Chicago-Kent College of Law as an assistant clinical professor in spring 2023. Stokes has more than 25 years of trial experience. Since 2000, Stokes has held the position of managing partner of several boutique law firms including, but not limited to, Holt & Woods and the Consumer Legal Group. Over the course of her legal career, she has represented clients in the area of civil litigation, criminal defense, bankruptcy, real estate, business law, and estate planning.

Stokes began teaching as an adjunct professor at Governors State University in 2011. As an adjunct professor, she has taught business law in the College of Business, various courses in the GSU’s Master of Arts in Criminal Justice program. Stokes also taught in the university’s Ph.D. program for interdisciplinary studies. She also acts as chief village administrative hearing officer for the Village of Matteson, Illinois, where she oversees enforcement of building codes. She previously performed the same role for the Village of Robbins, Illinois, for 10 years.

Prior to law school, Stokes worked as an industrial hygienist at the United States Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), where she was responsible for responding to employee health and safety complaints. During law school , she worked at the Chicago Bridge & Iron Company as an environmental land specialist where she helped develop corporate environmental policies. She also worked as the safety/environmental field coordinator for Liquid Carbonic Industries, and as an environmental regulatory specialist at Velsicol Chemical Corporation.

Stokes is also active in the community, volunteering with Boys & Girls Club of Ford Heights, Illinois; providing pro bono services to pro se litigants in employment discrimination matters for the Northern District of Illinois; and helping to write grants for the Art Justice Fund.

Stokes is a commissioner for the Village of Frankfort, Illinois, Fire and Police Board, a board member for the Lincoln Way 210 School District, and national legal counsel for Top Ladies of Distinction, Inc. In 2011, she was the recipient of the organization’s Orchid Award, which recognizes outstanding women in the field of law.

Stokes earned her B.S. from Xavier University of Louisiana and her J.D. from Chicago-Kent.


J.D., Chicago-Kent College of Law

B.S., Xavier University of Louisiana

Professional Affiliations & Memberships

Federal Bar Association (FBA)
Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA)
Cook County Bar Association (CCBA)
Chicago Bar Association (CBA)


2016, Women of Excellence honoree for the field of Business, Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. Chi Lambda Lambda Chapter

2012, 10,000 Small Business Program, Goldman Sachs, Selected as 1 of 37 business to participate as the First Cohort Certificate of Successful Completion of 6 month program

2011, Orchid Award Recipient, Recognized for Outstanding Woman in the Field of Law, Top Ladies of Distinction, Inc., Midway Chicago Chapter


Identifying State Law Due Process Requirements Under the Federal Telecommunications Act of 1996, Administrative Law Quarterly, September, 1996

Community Service

2018 Grant Proposal Participant, Art for Justice Fund, Grant aimed at addressing the issue of Mass incarceration, Working with Professor Vincent Adams

2017-2018 Pro Bono Counsel, Served as Pro Bono counsel to Pro Se Plaintiffs in Employment Discrimination matters through Settlement Assistance Program

2017 Panelist, Charlottesville: Symptoms of Hate and Intolerance in America, Governor’s State University, University Park, IL

2013 - 2017 Volunteer, Boys & Girls Club of Ford Heights, IL, Organized and participated in various community service projects with Teen Group in South Suburban Chicago Chapter

1998 - 2007 Pro Bono Counsel/Attorney, Assigned pro bono criminal case matters to represent inmates in the settlement of their Title VII as a member of the Federal Trial Bar

Professional Activities

2020 – Present, Commissioner, Village of Frankfort Fire & Police Board
2020 – PresentBoard Member, Lincoln Way 210 School District
2018 – 2019, National Parliamentarian, Top Ladies of Distinction, Incorporated
2017 - Present, National Legal Counsel, Top Ladies of Distinction, Incorporated
2017 – 2019, Mid Western Region Membership Chairperson, Jack & Jill of America, Inc.
2013 – 2020, Board Member, United Way-South/Southwest, Matteson, IL
2016 – 2017, Area III Legal Counsel, Top Ladies of Distinction, Incorporated
2013 – 2017,President, South Suburban Chicago Chapter, Jack & Jill of America, Inc.
2010 – 2013, Board Member, RESPOND NOW, Chicago Heights, IL
2010 – 2013, Board Member, JASSAC Charitable Foundation
2012,Board Member, South Suburban PADS


2018,Workshop Presenter, How To Arm Myself with Great Knowledge of the Law, Women’s Retreat

2017,Workshop Presenter, How to Run an Organization Legally, Top Ladies of Distinction, Inc.

2017,Workshop Presenter, Effective Parliamentary Procedure, Area Conference, Top Ladies of Distinction, Inc.

2016,Workshop Presenter, Is It Legal, Making Decisions to Protect the Organization, Area Conference, Top Ladies of Distinction, Inc.

2016,Workshop Presenter, Is It Legal, Making Decisions to Protect the Organization, Area Conference, Top Ladies of Distinction, Inc.

2010-2013Workshop Presenter, Code Enforcement Officer Training, Village of Robbins, Illinois

2010,Workshop Presenter, Business Entity Formation, Matteson, IL