Steven H. Cohen’75 DSC
2015 Distinguished Service Citation
Early on, a mentor counseled Steve Cohen to focus his career on something that would separate him from everyone else. He has done precisely that through pioneering legal work that represents whistleblowers.
A Chicago-based attorney, Steve is recognized nationally for prosecuting dozens of cases of fraud involving health care, government contracting, and federally insured financial institutions. Through settlements in these cases, more than half a billion dollars has been returned to individual states and federally funded programs.
In 2001, at the vanguard of this newly expanding area of the law, Steve founded the Cohen Law Group, dedicated to whistleblower and class action lawsuits. He also co-founded the Whistleblower Action Network, an alliance of lawyers who investigate and prosecute lawsuits on behalf of employees and insiders who come forward to expose wrongdoing.
The scope of his service extends beyond the practice of law-to his alma mater, where he contributes his insight and leadership on its board of trustees, and where he and his wife, Mary Mikva’74, started a fund that allows students to pursue intensive summer internships.
Steve was honored with an appointment by President Obama to serve on the board of trustees of the Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation. He also serves on the board of the Mikva Challenge, which engages young people in our democracy, and has grown to serve more than 6,000 high school students in the Chicago area.
In the last few years, Steve has turned much of his energy toward the Chicago Media Project, which he co-founded and leads, as chairman of the board. This innovative project connects nonprofits with filmmakers and media companies to produce films that bring about social change.
For leading a fulfilling life marked by high achievement, personal responsibility, and public contribution in a diverse society-in other words, for living the mission of Beloit College-the Alumni Association is pleased to award Steve Cohen with its highest honor: the Distinguished Service Citation.