Born the daughter of Asian American immigrants in Atlanta, Georgia, Anne Shaw has lived and worked in the greater Chicagoland area almost her entire life, and is a proud small business owner and attorney. Ms. Shaw and her husband, Matt McWhinney, live in East Village/Wicker Park Chicago where they are both active with family life and community service.
In 2015, Ms. Shaw ran for alderman in the 1st Ward in a highly contested race against an incumbent and narrowly missed forcing him into a run off by 89 votes. She then was asked to run for an open State Representative seat in the 4th District and she out raised three other candidates and garnered the most individual donations with over 1,000 individual and small business donations. She did not win this race, but has remained active in the Communities served by the 1st Ward and the 4th District.
She is also the founding officer and shareholder of Shaw Legal Services, Ltd., Ms. Shaw’s over 20 year legal practice centers around taking care of families and the businesses that support those families. Her and her firms’ work focuses on civil litigation in the areas of civil rights, real estate and business. Her firm also handles estate planning, small business representation, and real estate.
In 2012, Ms. Shaw discovered that the cosmetology and nail technician State licensing exams were only offered in English and Spanish but not in any Asian languages. She immediately started working pro bono to have these licensing exams translated into Asian languages to help the Asian community. By 2013, working closely with then Governor Quinn’s Senior Policy Director and current 2nd District State Representative, Theresa Mah, and the Governor agreed to work on translating and offering these exams in Asian languages. By February 2014, the first cosmetology exam in Chinese was offered to students.
Ms. Shaw has been invited to speak to numerous other organizations, including as a plenary panelist for the National Association of Women Lawyers, as a Keynote Speaker for DePaul University, for the Chinese American Service League, the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association, and others.
In 2008 she was named one of the top lawyers under 40 in Chicago by Chicago Law Bulletin. In 2009 she was named a “Best Lawyer Under 40” by the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association.
In 2011, Ms. Shaw was honored by Chicago Volunteer Legal Services for founding the first pro-bono legal clinic in Chinatown in 2010, which has served thousands of indigent and low income immigrants and for which she is still an integral part of.
Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle appointed Ms. Shaw to serve as a Commissioner on the Cook County Board of Ethics. Ms. Shaw was the first Asian American appointed to that position.
In 2014, she received the Asian American Coalition of Chicago’s Community Service Award and was recently named as one of National Asian Pacific American Women's Forum (NAPAWF) Chicago Chapter as an “AAPI Everyday SHEro” for her support of the next generation of AAPI women leaders, and immigration rights, as well as her extensive community service. In 2015, Ms. Shaw received the prestigious Vanguard Award from the Chicago Bar Association. In 2016, Ms. Shaw received an award for her outstanding pro bono work from Chicago Kent College of Law. In 2017, she received the Outstanding community service award from Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx.
Ms. Shaw obtained her Bachelors of Science Degree from DePaul University and her Juris Doctorate from IIT Chicago Kent College of Law.
Ms. Shaw’s civic and bar involvement includes the following:
American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois. 2016 to present Board Member.
Asian American Coalition of Chicago. 2016 to present Board Member.
Midwest Asian Health Association. 2016 to present Board Member.
Impact 100 Chicago Women Empowering Change. 2016 and 2017.
West Town Public Safety Committee. 2017 Inaugural Member.
Common Cause Illinois. 2016-2017 Member of Development Committee.
Cook County Board of Ethics. 2009 to 2014 Commissioner.
DePaul University Alumni Association. 2008 - 2013 Board Member; and 2009 to 2011 Secretary.
Illinois Women’s Institute for Leadership. Class of 2010.
Asian American Bar Association. President June 2007 to July 2008.
Asian American Bar Association Law Foundation. Founding President 2009 to 2013; 2013 to present Board Member.
Asian Americans Advancing Justice Chicago. 2008 – 2012 Board Member and Treasurer.
Clerk of the Circuit Court of Cook County Asian Advisory Council Chairperson 2003 – 2011.
East Village Association. Vice President April 2003 – 2004. Board Member 2017 – present.