Stephanie Moore (’19) says she has always had the commitment to serve her country. She has family members that put on the uniform and always felt it was important to also follow in those footsteps. Being a member of the Illinois National Guard was the perfect avenue for her to carry on the family tradition.
On July 11, 2020, Stephanie was sworn in as a First Lieutenant Judge Advocate of the Illinois Army National Guard in Springfield, Illinois. The highly selective and competitive process took over a year to complete. As a Judge Advocate, 1LT Moore is an officer in the military and a legal professional where she is able to represent Army leadership and Army Soldiers in military legal matters.
1LT Moore enlisted into the military about eight years ago with the initial goal of going straight to officer candidate school. However, she had her heart set on being a member of the JAG Corps. 1LT Moore gave up an officer position and served as a paralegal for eight years until she was able to meet the requirements of becoming a Judge Advocate. She was also the only certified court reporter in the Illinois Army National Guard for three years before finally attending law school.
At NIU Law, 1LT Moore was a very active and engaged student. She was president of L.O.V.E. (Lawyers Opposing Violence Everywhere), vice president of the Black Law Students Association, and a member of Phi Alpha Delta.
“NIU Law allowed me to balance still being a guardsman while going to law school,” says 1LT Moore. “I was accommodated by my professors when military missions required me to step away, and I continuously had a support system within NIU. I always say NIU Law supported my decision to serve.”
1LT Moore’s part-time military status allows her to have a full-time civilian career. She is also an assistant state’s attorney in Will County where she was sworn in on November 8, 2019 and works under the direction of Will County State’s Attorney James Glasgow who is also a 1978 NIU Law graduate. 1LT Moore is assigned to the misdemeanor floor and also works alongside of several other NIU Law alumni in the office.
She loves the flexibility of her dual roles and being an integral part of the resources that communities turn to when they are in distress. This year alone, the Illinois Army National Guard Soldiers have been activated for floods, COVID-19 missions, and for civil unrest. 1LT Moore was activated for two and half months and assigned to a drive-thru COVID-19 clinic in Waukegan, Illinois.
She is not the only NIU alum to serve as a Judge Advocate in the Illinois Army Guard. Captain Gary Deutschle (‘13) serves as a Brigade Judge Advocate, mentoring new Judge Advocates such as 1LT Moore.
“For anyone considering being in the guard, it is a great option. It provides an avenue for me to serve my country, took care of school, allowed me to be self-sufficient with a civilian career, and to have pride in what I am doing every day,” she said.