Recently appointed Judge by the Illinois Supreme Court, Judge Teresa Molina has spent her 18 year legal career helping communities throughout Cook County and protecting our most vulnerable residents including victims of domestic violence, child abuse, and sexual assault.

Judge Molina is currently serving in the First Municipal District in the Richard J. Daley Center where she hears traffic matters and has presided over bench trials, statutory summary suspension hearings, and eviction cases.

Prior to becoming a judge, Teresa played a key role in safeguarding Illinois residents by ensuring standards for licensed real estate related professionals were properly applied and enforced. She was the Chief of Real Estate Prosecutions at the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation. Teresa led a team of seven that prosecuted real estate license law violations. This included prosecuting real estate brokers, real estate appraisers, and home inspectors who violated their ethical and professional obligations.

Judge Molina began her career in the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office in 2001. As an Assistant State’s Attorney, she prosecuted hundreds of felony bench trials and 29 jury trials. Her assignments included the Child Support Enforcement Division, Domestic Violence Division, Preliminary Hearings Unit, Felony Review Unit, Grand Jury Unit, Sex/Homicide Unit and the Felony Trial Division.

Judge Molina has always had a strong interest in justice issues and the role of the legal system in protecting vulnerable people. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice and Sociology from Ashland University in Ashland, Ohio in 1995 and earned her law degree from The Ohio State University College of Law in 2001.

Teresa is active in numerous professional associations including the Illinois Latino Judges Association, the Puerto Rican Bar Association (where she served as the Chair of the Judicial Evaluations Committee), Hispanic Lawyers Association of Illinois, Hispanic National Bar Association, and the National Hispanic Prosecutors Association (where she served as the Membership Secretary).

Teresa has mentored over thirty law clerks throughout her career. She is a lifetime member of Alpha Phi Sorority and has been active in her community as well by volunteering with the Forest Park Arts Alliance and the Forest Park Historical Society. She lives in Forest Park with her amazing rescue dog Chola.