Hon. Diane Joan Larsen (Ret.)

Title/s:  Judge, Circuit Court of Cook County (Ret.)



Diane Joan Larsen is a retired Judge of the Circuit Court of Cook County, having served for more than 20 years including six years in the General Chancery Section of the Chancery Division and 14 years in the Law Division. 

Before being elected, Judge Larsen was Chief of Federal Policy Litigation at the City of Chicago’s Law Department.  During her 15 year career at the City, she specialized in the defense of civil rights policy challenges and class actions in both federal and state court.  She has initiated the implementation of several law enforcement and criminal law procedures, including development of probable cause hearings for the local courts. 

Judge Larsen has lectured on various constitutional, civil, and criminal law procedure issues at the Chicago Bar Association, the Illinois State Bar Association, the Police Foundation in Washington, D.C., the Chicago Police Academy, the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police, and the Hispanic Institute of Law Enforcement.

Judge Larsen has been an adjunct professor for 30 years at Loyola University Chicago Law School, where she teaches Illinois Civil Litigation Practice and Appellate Advocacy.  She has also taught classes for the Police Training Institute of the University of Illinois.  Judge Larsen served as a Judicial Education Faculty Member throughout her career on the bench.  She remains the current author and editor of the Illinois Judges’ Civil Motion Practice Manual. 

Judge Larsen is a past Chair of the Illinois Supreme Court’s Civil Justice Committee.  She currently serves on the Board of Managers for the Chicago Bar Association and has served on the Board of Directors for Women Everywhere Partners in Service Project, Inc., where she has been a volunteer for the past 20 years.  She has also served on the Board of Directors for the Illinois Judges Foundation, where she was Chair of the Harold Sullivan Scholarship Committee.  Judge Larsen was a 2008 recipient of the Hooten award given by the Women’s Bar Association of Illinois.  Judge Larsen was recently honored as the 2019 recipient of the Distinguished Service Award given by the Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel. 

As a retired judge, Judge Larsen is a mediator and arbitrator with JAMS, the largest private provider of alternative dispute resolution services worldwide.



B.A. in Psychology summa cum laude, DePaul University

J.D., Loyola University of Chicago

Program Areas

Legal Writing

Courses Taught

Legal Writing III - Fall

Illinois Civil Litigation Practice - Spring