Thomas E. Kennedy IIIAttorney
Thomas E. Kennedy III has built a career fighting injustice and advocating for the rights of the marginalized. His commitment to improving systems that serve the poor and disabled is proven by his zealous advocacy for individuals with developmental disabilities, foster children, and minorities in the workplace. Mr. Kennedy is married to Linda Pilcher, the owner of Something Elegant Catering in St. Louis, Missouri. His son, Alec, now attends graduate school in New York City.
Twenty-two years with Land of Lincoln Legal Assistance Foundation, Inc.
Land of Lincoln’s task force on disability rights law.
Directed a statewide legal services program to provide legal assistance in special education matters to children who are wards of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services.
Deputy Director of the Illinois Developmental Disabilities Law Project.
Administrator for the Illinois Department of Mental Health.
Caseworker for the New York Department of Social Services.
Awards and honors
Graduate of the National Institute for Trial Advocacy.
1989 – Lawyers Trust Fund of Illinois’ first attorney recognition award.
1989 – Smithson Advocacy Award from the Coalition of Citizens with Disabilities in Illinois.
2004 – Volunteer Lawyer of the Year Award from Legal Services of Eastern Missouri.
2005 – award for outstanding advocacy from The Midwest Foster Care and Adoption Association.
2002 – 9th Annual Clarence Darrow Public Interest Advocate Award from the Public Interest Law Group of Saint Louis University School of Law.
2003 – Metropolitan St. Louis Equal Housing Opportunity Council’s Open Door Award.
MO CLE Special Education Law (2008, 2009, and 2010).
Selected by other attorneys as a Leading Lawyer who is among the top 5% of all lawyers in Illinois in Civil Rights and Constitutional Law, School Law, Elder Law, and Social Security Disability Law.
ISBA Education Law Section case law update (2006).
“Proof of Damages in Fair Housing Cases” for MOCLE (2005).
“New Standards and Decisions in School and Education Law,” co-authored with Genevieve J. Nichols, Esq., and published by Lorman Education Services (2000).
“The Americans with Disabilities Act: A White Paper,” co-authored with Nancy Leonard, Esq., and funded by a grant from the Illinois Planning Council on Developmental Disabilities (1990).
“School Law,” published by the Illinois Institute of Continuing Legal Education (1985).
Professional and Community Organizations
Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates (COPAA)
Disability Rights Bar Association
National Organization of Social Security Claimants’ Representatives
National Advisory Board, Food Allergy Management & Education (FAME)
Formerly a member of the Civil Justice Reform Act Committee of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois.
U.S. District Courts for the Central and Southern Districts of Illinois, and the Eastern and Western Districts of Missouri.
Circuit Courts of Appeal for the Seventh and Eighth Circuits.
Graduate of the University of Illinois College of Law, 1971
Outstanding Senior Award, a service award voted by the faculty.
Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut.
Sarah Jane HuntAttorney
Sarah Jane Hunt has experience representing plaintiffs in civil rights, employment and special education disputes. She also has extensive experience representing individuals in collective and class actions relating to unpaid wages and overtime under both the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and state wage and hour laws.
After graduating from the Saint Louis University School of Law in 2011, Sarah Jane worked as a litigation associate for a small plaintiff’s firm in Clayton, Missouri where her practice centered on litigating labor and employment disputes, including discrimination, harassment, wrongful termination, breach of employment contracts and non-compete agreements and state and federal wage and hour disputes. Sarah Jane has extensive experience litigating complex matters involving multi-party litigation, commercial and business litigation, and collective and class action claims for unpaid wage and overtime under both the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and state wage and hour disputes. Sarah Jane is also experienced in advising clients regarding business and employment contracts and agreements, best employment practices and compliance and representing individuals in Missouri administrative and licensing hearings. After joining the Law Offices of Thomas E. Kennedy, III in September of 2013, Sarah Jane’s practice has expanded to include cases involving disability rights and discrimination, Medicaid and other health benefits, special education as well as Fair Housing Act and First Amendment violations. Sarah Jane also remains dedicated to representing employees in labor and employment disputes such as wrongful termination and wage and hour matters.
Sarah Jane is a 2011 graduate of the Saint Louis University School of Law. During law school, she was President of the American Constitution Society, member of the National Trial Competition and recipient of the Milton F. Napier Scholarship Award for Excellence in Trial Advocacy. During law school, Sarah Jane was also invited to be a member of the Theodore McMillian American Inn of Court, an elite group of attorneys and judges in the Saint Louis area. Prior to obtaining her law degree, Sarah graduated summa cum laude from Lindenwood University in Saint Charles, Missouri with a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish and Nonprofit Administration. She remained on the Dean’s List throughout her tenure at Lindenwood, was a member of the National Collegiate Hispanic Honor Society and was named Lindenwood University Student of the Year in 2007.
United States District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri
United States District Court for the Southern District of Illinois
United States District Court for the Central District of Illinois
Bar Association of Metropolitan Saint Louis
Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates
Lawyers Association of Saint Louis, Missouri
Missouri Association of Trial Lawyers
National Employment Lawyers Association
Saint Louis University School of Law Trial Team Advisory Board
Althea S. RespessOffice Administrator
Althea joined the firm in 2009 as the firm’s office administrator. In addition to managing the day to day operations of the firm, Althea assists the attorneys and clients with their litigation support needs. She obtained a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Central Florida in 1993, where she majored in Legal Studies. She was employed by the Office of the State Attorney of Florida from 1987 to 2008 when her family relocated to St. Louis, Missouri. Althea is a member of the Gateway Chapter of the Association of Legal Administrators. She served two years as the chair of the Chapter’s Diversity committee and remains an active member. She is also a member of the St. Louis Paralegal Association. Althea lives in St. Louis, Missouri with her husband and two daughters. Althea enjoys playing the African drum, walks through Forest Park and spending time with her family and friends.