Joan A. Akalaonu



Joan Akalaonu counsels clients through all steps of complex commercial litigation. She also advises clients through government and internal investigation matters.

Before joining Faegre Baker Daniels, Joan was an associate at Skadden, Arps Slate, Meagher & Flom, where she represented and advised clients in various commercial litigation matters, investigations and enforcement actions brought by government agencies, and internal investigations involving complaints of employee misconduct.

During law school, Joan externed with Judge Sanjay Tailor, associate judge in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Chancery Division. She also externed at the Loyola Civitas Child Law Clinic, where she served as a child representative for family law cases in domestic relations court, and she represented a child victim in a federal criminal restitution case in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana.

Personal Interests

Joan enjoys volunteering, both locally and internationally. She loves to read and is a theater enthusiast. Joan also served as a catechist teacher for Confirmation candidates at her former parish.


Bar Admissions


Court Admissions

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois


Loyola University Chicago School of Law
J.D. magna cum laude, Dean's List, Loyola Law Review Journal (junior editor), Children's Legal Rights Journal (senior editor) (2015)

University of Illinois at Chicago
M.S.W. in Mental Health, with honors (2009)

Yale University
B.A. in Psychology, with distinction, cum laude (2004)

Leadership & Community

Pro Bono

  • Represent a young female in asylum immigration proceedings
  • Represented children in guardianship proceedings
  • Assisted in drafting amicus brief on solitary confinement for MacArthur Justice Center at Northwestern Pritzker School of Law

Civic Activities

  • Daniel Murphy Scholarship Fund — Mentor, Associates Board member
  • Steppenwolf Associates — Member
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