A Publication of WTVP

40 Leaders Under Forty

As an attorney and owner of a successful law practice in Peoria, Nina R. Gougis represents clients in a wide range of areas including bankruptcy, civil rights, family law and employment law. She has successfully represented clients in numerous high-profile cases, including those involving gender and racial discrimination, sexual harassment and unlawful retaliation, and has exhibited leadership and integrity in representing disadvantaged clients, while providing mentorship to young attorneys and minority law students.

She also serves as one of Peoria County’s two guardians ad litem, appointed by the court to represent children’s best interests. She is admitted to the U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois, U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of Illinois, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.

Gougis is an executive board member and third vice president for the Peoria branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), as well as chair of the Peoria NAACP’s Communications Committee. She serves as a board member and secretary of Central Illinois Friends, which offers essential services to those living with HIV, along with sexual health and education services. Most recently, she was appointed to the City of Peoria’s Advisory Committee on Police Community Relations.

As a past board member for the Peoria County Bar Association, Gougis worked to increase diversity in the legal profession. She is a former member of the Peoria Public Schools Parent-Teacher Advisory Committee and past board member for the Peoria chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and the Peoria Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority. She also founded and oversees the Black Women’s Radical Self Love Book Club, which hosts presentations from nationally known, best-selling authors and speakers for more than 115 members. PM