Theresa A. Amato
Adjunct Lecturer
Justice Studies
College of Arts and Sciences
(773) 442-4790
Courses Taught
JUST 351 Advocating for Social Justice in Illinois
Research Interests
• Citizen Advocacy • Electoral Law and Reform

•  Harvard/Radcliffe Colleges—A.B. cum laude, Government and Economics, 1986
•  New York University School of Law—Juris Doctor, 1989


Selected Publications

•  Grand Illusion: The Myth of Voter Choice in a Two-Party Tyranny. New York: New Press, 2009.
•  Liberated Lawyering: How Lawyers Can Change the World. New York: New Press, 2015 (anticipated)



Theresa Amato is a public advocate. She currently serves as the executive director of Citizen Works, where she works to rebalance the power between corporations and citizens; and she is the founder and president of the Citizen Advocacy Center, which builds democracy for the 21st century. In both 2000 and 2004, Amato was the national presidential campaign manager and in-house counsel for Ralph Nader, producing the highest vote count for a third-party progressive candidate since 1924. Publishers Weekly termed Amato’s knowledge of election law “encyclopedic,” and the publisher of Ballot Access News called her book, Grand Illusion: The Myth of Voter Choice in a Two-Party Tyranny, the best book ever written on ballot access. Amato is a manager of Amato & Main, LLC, through which she advises nonprofits, foundations, and progressive candidates seeking office.

LWH 4034
5500 N. St. Louis Ave.
Chicago, IL 60625-4699
United States

(773) 442-4790
Office Hours
THURSDAY: 6:00-7:00 p.m.
Main Campus