Kathleen Wrigley Pletsch

About Kathleen
Kathleen Wrigley Pletsch was born and raised in Decatur and joined Samuels Miller as an associate attorney in May 2023. In 2012, Kathleen graduated from Meridian High School in Macon, Illinois. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Millikin University in 2016, where she majored in Political Science and Spanish and graduated Summa Cum Laude. Kathleen attended the University of Illinois College of Law, where she graduated Magna Cum Laude with her Juris Doctorate in May 2019. She was admitted to practice law in Illinois by its Supreme Court in November of 2019 and is also admitted to the practice before the U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois.

Kathleen’s practice includes representing individuals and families with regard to wills, trusts, and estate planning, as well as trust and estate administration and litigation. Her real estate practice includes residential and farmland real estate transactions and litigation. Kathleen also represents landlords in drafting leases, advising with regard to landlord-tenant rights and responsibilities, and pursuing evictions. She also counsels private sector business clients on entity formation, ongoing operations, and business litigation. Kathleen worked as an attorney for a local municipal government, and subsequently has gained experience and knowledge in municipal law, including ongoing routine business, drafting and enforcing ordinances, and reviewing FOIA requests and issues regarding OMA.

Kathleen is a member of the Illinois State Bar Association and Central Illinois Estate Planning Council. Kathleen is a Board Director for the Decatur Bar Association. She previously served as a Trustee on the Decatur Public Library Board of Trustees and as President on the Decatur & Macon County Animal Shelter Foundation Board. She also serves as Vice President on the House Corporation Board for Tri Delta at Millikin University and is a member of the Tri Delta Decatur Alumnae Chapter. Kathleen lives in Decatur with her husband (Austin), their twins, and their dog Dozer.

Joshua J. Dubbelde

About Joshua
Joshua J. Dubbelde joined Samuels Miller in 2011 and became a partner with the firm in January 2017.  He graduated with honors from the University of Illinois College of Law in 2011, having previously received a B.S. in Bioengineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2004.  He is licensed to practice law in the State of Illinois and also admitted to practice before the U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois. 

Joshua’s practice includes representing individuals and families with regard to wills, trusts, and estate planning; trust and estate administration and litigation; and residential and farm real estate transactions and litigation. His real estate practice includes zoning, easement, and nuisance dispute representation. Joshua also represents public sector municipal and local government bodies with ongoing routine business and with complex transactional matters; and he counsels private sector business clients on entity formation, ongoing operations, sales/mergers, and business litigation. He was selected in 2019, 2020, and 2021 as an Emerging Lawyer and in 2022 as a Leading Lawyer by Leading Lawyers Magazine.

Prior to law school, Joshua worked for approximately four years as a chemist and researcher for several large chemical and agricultural companies. Although his shift from scientist to attorney may be an uncommon one, he finds that the analytical and deductive skills necessary for both professions have allowed for a rewarding career change. Joshua sits on the Board of Directors of the Richland Community College Foundation; he previously served on the Board of Directors of Webster-Cantrell Hall and he is a Past President of the Central Illinois Estate Planning Council. He is a member of the Illinois State Bar Association and the Decatur Bar Association.

Craig W. Runyon

About Craig
Craig W. Runyon joined Samuels Miller upon his graduation from law school and became a partner in 2014. Craig graduated from the Southern Illinois University School of Law (cum laude) in 2008. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Finance (with honors) from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2005. During law school, Craig was a Taylor Mattis Fellow, a member of the Southern Illinois University Law Journal, and had his case note selected for publication in the Journal.

Craig prepares wills, trusts, and powers of attorney and assists executors, administrators, and trustees with the administration of probate estates and trusts. He also counsels clients in connection with the purchase and sale of residential, commercial, and agricultural real estate, as well as other real estate matters, such as partitions, real estate tax exemptions, and leases. Craig has been a speaker at the Illinois State Bar Association’s annual Agricultural Law Conference (February 2018, Topic: Involuntary Partition: Drawing a Line in the Dirt) and authored a chapter on farm leases in the 2022 edition of IICLE Handbook titled Farming Law: Property Issues.

Craig represents financial institutions in state court and federal bankruptcy court and also provides counsel to these clients in areas including regulatory compliance, contract negotiation, consumer lending, commercial lending, and trusts and estates law. Craig assists financial institutions, as well as other creditors, with routine and complex collection matters and has experience with foreclosures, mechanics’ liens, bankruptcy proceedings, and all manner of post-judgment collection methods.

Craig assists business clients with organizing and maintaining corporations and limited liability companies, including not-for-profit corporations. He has successfully obtained 501(c)(3) exempt status for both private foundations and public charities. Craig also routinely advises business clients on all manner of employment-related issues, assisting them with employment agreements, employee handbooks and policies, non-compete agreements, and severance agreements, among other items.

Craig was named an “Emerging Lawyer” by Leading Lawyers each year from 2015 through 2022 and has been named a “Leading Lawyer” each year since 2023. Emerging and Leading Lawyers are selected based on a survey of their peers and review by the Leading Lawyers Advisory Board. Less than five percent of all lawyers licensed in each state have received the distinction of Leading Lawyer. Craig has been recognized in the areas of Trust, Will, & Estate Planning Law; Banking & Financial Institutions Law; Creditors’ Rights/Commercial Collection Law; and Real Estate Law (Commercial and Residential).

Craig’s significant decisions include: State Bank of Arthur v. Miller (In re: Miller), 2012 WL 3589426, 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 116275 (C.D. Ill. 2012); Huggins v. Harrison, 2013 IL App (4th) 120956-U and 2017 IL App (4th) 1700026-U; and Alward v. Jacob Holding of Ontario, L.L.C., 2019 IL App (5th) 180332.

Craig is the former Chairperson of the board of directors of Heritage Behavioral Health Center, Inc., a Past President of the Central Illinois Estate Planning Council, and a former member of the board of directors of the Decatur Bar Association. Craig lives in Decatur with his wife, Kelli (Smith) Runyon, and their two sons.

James T. Jackson

About James
James T. Jackson
has been practicing law with Samuels, Miller, Schroeder, Jackson & Sly, LLP since 1988.  During that time he has been a Member of the Illinois State Bar Association, serving as chair of several committees, including Tort Law Section Council; Insurance Law Section Council; and the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Committee.  Mr. Jackson has also served as Co-Chair of the Student Affairs Section (NACUA) 1998-2000, member of Defense Research Institute/Illinois Association of Defense Counsel 1995-present, and member of Leading Lawyers Network (Illinois) 2005-present.

Mr. Jackson is involved in his local community, previously serving as an Elder at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church and Chairman of the congregation.  He has also served as a Board member of Macon Resources and the Decatur Area Arts Council.  He currently serves on the Board of Regents for Concordia College in Selma, Alabama

Mark E. Jackson

About Mark
Mark E. Jackson
graduated from Lawrence University, Appleton, Wisconsin in 1971 with a Bachelor of Arts degree, majoring in economics.  He graduated from the University of Illinois College of Law in 1974 with a Juris Doctor degree. While in law school, he published an article in the Illinois Bar Journal entitled “Governmental Immunity – A Plan for Legislative Action” (Illinois Bar Journal, February 1973).  He is a member of Defense Research Institute and Leading Lawyers Network.

Mr. Jackson has been active in the Decatur community, having served on many boards and as President of Webster-Cantrell Hall, The Decatur Club, and St. Paul’s Lutheran Church.  He currently serves on the Board of The Community Foundation of Decatur/Macon County and as an elder at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church.