James L. Jerue Partner
  • D 312.606.3202
  • F 312.267.2204
James L. Jerue
"I love jazz and, like the jazz greats, an entrepreneur has to be ready to improvise. It’s a privilege to help an entrepreneur create a great business that looks little like the business the entrepreneur first thought he or she was creating."

Jim is a partner in HMB’s Business and Finance Group. He focuses his practice on start-up and early stage financings, mergers and acquisitions, contract negotiation and providing counsel to company executives and their boards of directors.

Jim represents businesses from their beginnings through initial financing, growth initiatives, subsequent financing and ultimate liquidity. While a large portion of Jim’s practice is centered in the technology space, Jim also represents entrepreneurs who seek to purchase, operate and grow established businesses in areas such as marketing, packaging, manufacturing and distribution.

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Jim also provides general counsel services related to business transition, employment issues, partnership and LLC agreements and securities matters. Jim’s general counsel clients include professional service firms, health care providers and payors, retailers and outsourced business service providers.

A presence in Chicago’s start-up community, Jim leads HMB’s relationship with and sponsorship of Hyde Park Angels, the most active angel investment organization in the Midwest. He serves as a mentor at the Food Foundry, a food start-up accelerator housed at Chicago’s Tech & Entrepreneurship Center, has advised at the Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business and has served as a mentor at the business accelerator Techstars Chicago.

A Business-Savvy Approach

Clients rely on Jim for more than legal advice; they appreciate his respect for the human elements of both their transaction and their business. With decades of experience, Jim’s approach is informed by listening first and simplifying the difficult. Jim’s focus is helping his clients get to “yes,” whether that’s a closed financing, a signed contract or a successful business sale.


  • University of California at Los Angeles, J.D.
  • Northwestern University, B.A.


  • Illinois


  • Leading Lawyers, 2022
  • Illinois Super Lawyers, 2010-2012, 2014-2017
  • AV Rated
  • Chicago’s Best Startup Lawyers, Red Rocket, 2012

Professional Memberships

  • Chicago Bar Associations
  • Business Law Committee, former Chair
  • Subcommittee on Non-Corporate Business Entities for six years, former Chair
  • Subcommittee on Private Equity for three years, former Co-Chair
  • Executive Committee of the Committee on Partnerships and Unincorporated Business Organizations of the American Bar Association’s Business Law Section, former Program Chair
  • Illinois Secretary of State’s Corporation Law Advisory Committee, former member

Community Involvement

  • Mentor, Food Foundry
  • Leads HMB’s relationship with and sponsorship of Hyde Park Angels, an angel investment organization affiliated with the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business
  • Former Mentor, Chicago Business Accelerator Techstars Chicago (formerly Excelerate Labs)
  • Former Advisor, Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business


  • Client Success: Deck Commerce Closes $7.8MM in Series A Funding Led by Plymouth GrowthOctober 14, 2021

    HMB would like to congratulate Deck Commerce on the closing of their Series A funding led by Plymouth Growth.

  • Client Success: HAAS Alert Raises $5M to Take Cellular V2X Network NationwideSeptember 7, 2021

    HMB would like to congratulate HAAS Alert on the closing of their equity financing round. The $5M in investment capital will support the nationwide expansion of Safety Cloud, the leading automotive digital alerting system that’s standard on emergency and roadway fleet vehicles. HAAS Alert’s platform enables real-time safety alerts between vehicles and connected infrastructure (V2X) to reduce the risk of…

  • Client Success: HMB Represents Lightstream in Sale to UK-based Publicly Traded Company Vitec GroupApril 15, 2021

    HMB would like to congratulate Lightstream and its CEO and Co-founder Stu Grubbs, COO and Co-founder Aaron Hassell, CCO and Co-founder Ryan Forquer and Principal Engineer and Co-founder Dan Trocchio on a successful sale to Creative Solutions, a division of Vitec Group, a UK publicly traded company on the London Stock Exchange. Lightstream is a US-based tech company that builds…

  • Client Success: WorkChew Announces $2.5M Series Seed Funding RoundMarch 30, 2021

    HMB would like to congratulate WorkChew and its co-founders, Maisha Burt and Allyson McDougal on a successful funding round. WorkChew, a startup that turns hotels and restaurants into on-demand flexible workspaces, raised $2.5 million. With WorkChew, company employees can access workspaces wherever they are: whether in an urban corridor or a suburb outside of a major city. Membership is often…

  • HMB Represents Hyde Park Angels in Lead Investment in Chicago-Based Smart Building StartupAugust 25, 2020

    Cohesion, a Chicago-based startup which makes a SaaS platform for building managers, announced that it raised $6.5 million in a funding round led by HPA, with participation from Frasers Property Group, investment firm CMT and a host of individual angel investors. HMB represented Hyde Park Angels (HPA) in their lead investment and congratulates HPA on the closing. HPA's people-first approach…

  • University of California at Los Angeles, J.D.
  • Northwestern University, B.A.
  • Illinois
500 West Madison Suite 3700
Chicago IL 60661

Phone: 312-606-3200 Fax: 312-606-3232
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