Benesch is pleased to announce that Bob Morgan has joined the firm as a partner in the Health Care and Life Sciences Practice Group. Morgan is a member of the Illinois House of Representatives, representing the 58th District. He formerly served as General Counsel to the Illinois Department of Public Health.
“Bob’s experience in regulation and policy offers our health care industry clients invaluable insights to help address the most complex issues their businesses face in today’s market,” said Benesch’s Managing Partner Gregg Eisenberg. “Even more important to us, his deep knowledge is shaped by an innovative, forward-looking perspective. Bob’s work with the still-developing cannabis industry is an example of his entrepreneurial mind-set and represents an opportunity for the firm to be along the leading edge in supporting our clients in a new and fast-changing sector of the economy, especially as Illinois law continues to evolve.”
Morgan served as the first statewide project coordinator for the State of Illinois Medical Cannabis Pilot Program. In this role, Morgan developed and implemented a regulatory framework for the use of cannabis by eligible patients.
While spearheading that program, Morgan oversaw the efforts of five state agencies and over 50 employees who were responsible for creating program rules and fees, laboratory testing and database systems, and a selection process for licensed dispensary facilities and cultivation centers. He was also charged with managing a multimillion-dollar state fund to create and maintain a system of operations, detailed tracking capabilities, policies to assure patient safety, proper enforcement of laws and regulations, and public education campaigns.
Beyond his state regulatory work, Morgan is highly experienced in private practice, as well. He counsels hospitals, health systems, consulting firms, pharmacies, and advocacy groups, assisting them in grasping the effects of federal and state health care reform legislation, ensuring compliance with evolving regulatory requirements and establishing industry best practices.
“This is a real coup for the Chicago office and our firm generally,” said Mark Silberman, a partner in Benesch’s Health Care Group and the Chair of its White Collar, Government Investigations & Regulatory Compliance Practice Group. “Bob’s public and private sector experience is second to none. He’s someone to whom leaders in business and government have always turned when they want a complicated challenge handled in the right way. We, and our clients, are truly proud to have him on our team.”
In his role with the Illinois Department of Public Health, Morgan advised both the agency director and senior staff on a wide range of complex legal issues, including licensure of health care facilities, emergency preparedness, maternal and child health initiatives, mental health and developmental disability facilities, and food safety. Morgan also led the department’s 15 attorneys and administered all privacy, confidentiality, and ethics policies and protocols for the department’s 1,200 employees.
Morgan also served in the Office of the Governor of the State of Illinois as associate general counsel and lead attorney on issues involving health care, the Affordable Care Act, private and public insurance issues and health information technology. In this role, he managed a dozen state agency general counsels overseeing health care, insurance, human services, environmental, energy, commerce and housing legal issues.
Morgan graduated from the Northern Illinois University College of Law in 2005, and from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2002.