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About me

Tamara N. Holder is an Illinois defense attorney, TV/radio legal analyst and political blogger.

Tamara Holder is the principal of The Law Firm of Tamara N. Holder, LLC
and founder of Her work includes: expungement and
clemency, criminal defense (felony and misdemeanor), race
discrimination, police brutality, personal injury and pro bono

Soon after Tamara's graduation from law school, she realized many of
her clients found themselves facing lifetime bans on employment,
education, adoption, even access to credit – all because of a prior
arrest record that was long forgotten. Seeing the need for outreach in
this area, Tamara created, to help offer a second
chance to people who have expungeable or sealable offenses under
Illinois law. She also helps people seek a Governor’s pardon for
non-expungeable offenses.

Tamara also works closely with Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, Sr. in crafting
and executing public policy initiatives, together with programs to
increase opportunities for minorities and the economically
disadvantaged. As a result of her work, she quickly caught the
attention of not only Chicago’s civic leaders, but also of those

Tamara was the first in the country to expose the railroad industry’s
improper employment practices toward those with criminal records. She
spearheaded a Congressional inquiry with the help of Chairman John
Conyers, the result of which was a hearing before the Congressional
Committee of Homeland Security in February of 2007. Then, in July of
2007, Tamara testified as an expert witness before the Congressional
Committee of Transportation, Sub-Committee of Maritime and
Infrastructure. Her testimony was crucial to preventing passage of an
invasive, anti-worker, anti-business piece of legislation calling for
mandatory identification cards for transportation workers, a statutory
scheme criticized by organized labor and management alike.

Tamara created a pro bono expungement clinic at Rev. Jesse L. Jackson's
Rainbow Push headquarters where she provides free legal advice and
educates the public about the importance of clearing their criminal

In 2008, Tamara uncovered a pattern of wrongful arrests and evictions
of Chicago's public housing residents, filing a class action lawsuit on
their behalf.

Tamara has met privately with Illinois Governor Patrick Quinn and
former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich on the issue of pardons and
Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan on criminal sentencing and
expungement laws. She has worked with many of the nation’s top
political leaders, such as Congressman Bennie Thompson and
Congresswoman Maxine Waters and former TSA Administrator Kip Hawley, to
name a few.

Tamara is a frequent guest on Fox News Channel, CNN, HLN, truTV (formerly CourtTV), and on local TV and radio.

Tamara sits on the advisory board of Women of Power (an organization
within the Cook County Sheriff’s Office -,
alongside some of the state’s most powerful leaders, including
Congressmen Danny Davis and Jesse Jackson, Jr., as well as many judges
and elected officials. The organization is devoted to helping women
rehabilitate who are caught within the criminal justice system. She
also sits on the board of Horizon Prison Ministries
(, a non-profit organization founded to
establish faith and character-based residential programs in prisons.
Tamara believes in rehabilitation over incarceration.

Tamara is an early graduate from college (The University of Arizona,
2000) and from law school (The John Marshall Law School, 2005). While
in law school, she learned criminal trial practice as an intern for the
Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office and contract negotiation and
mediation at Miramax Films in Los Angeles.


Practice areas


  1. Unspecified: 50%
  2. Criminal Defense: 50%
    11 years

Attorney endorsements

1 total 

Are you an attorney? Endorse this lawyer

  • Thomas Arthur Kenniff

    I've had the opportunity to work with Tamara as a legal commentator. She is an insightful lawyer who knows the law inside out. I highly recommend Ms. Holder.


    Thomas Kenniff Criminal Defense Attorney
    Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community

Contact info

The Law Firm of Tamara N. Holder, LLC

19 S LaSalle
Suite 1500
Chicago, IL, 60603


ILActive And Authorized To Practice Law200511/12/2015
We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.
Avvo contributions
Legal answers
Work experience
TitleCompany nameDuration
Attorney at LawThe Law Firm of Tamara N. Holder, LLC2005 - Present
Founder, Pro Bono Expungement Legal ClinicRainbow Push Organization2006 - 2010
School nameMajorDegreeGraduated
John Marshall Law School, ChicagoN/AN/A2005