John J. Gearen: Lawyer with Mayer Brown LLP

John J. Gearen

Chicago,  IL  U.S.A.
Phone+1 312 701 7278

Peer Rating
AV® Preeminent

Client Rating

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Experience & Credentials Ratings & Reviews

Practice Areas

  • Corporate & Securities
  • Real Estate Capital Markets
  • Distressed Real Estate
  • Financial Services Regulatory & Enforcement
  • Investment Management
  • Litigation & Dispute Resolution
  • Real Estate Litigation
  • Private Investment Funds
  • Real Estate
  • Corporate Real Estate
  • Development and Construction
  • Real Estate Investment
Contact InfoTelephone: +1 312 701 7278
Fax: +1 312 706 8707
University University of Notre Dame, B.A., summa cum laude, 1965; Oxford University, M.A., 1967
Law SchoolYale Law School, J.D., 1970
Admitted1972, Illinois


Chairman of the Board, Director, Schmitt Foundation

Director, Institute for the International Education of Students

Director, LINK, Unlimited

American College of Real Estate Lawyers

Chicago Bar Association

Chicago Council of Lawyers


John Gearen stands out for all commentators as a 'top notch deal-maker.' Regarded as a 'real institutional client lawyer' and 'a first-class lawyer's lawyer,' [he] inspired the description of 'pragmatic, thoughtful and scholarly.'

Chambers USA

John Gearen is a well-respected transactional and corporate lawyer whose practice is focused on real estate matters. John represents commercial banks, national insurance companies and pension funds engaged in negotiating acquisitions, construction and permanent financing for real estate projects and in workout negotiations. In addition, he advises clients regarding government approvals, financing arrangements and architectural and construction contracts regarding projects to develop hotels, offices, residential apartments and single-family residential complexes. John also represents tenants and landlords in office, commercial and industrial leases.

In the course of his corporate practice, John represents private-fund sponsors and investors and counsels parties involved in limited partnerships, joint ventures and other syndicated entities. Chambers USA notes that John stands out for all commentators [peers and clients] as a 'top notch deal-maker.' Regarded as a 'real institutional client lawyer'...'A first-class lawyer's lawyer',' [he] inspired the description of 'pragmatic, thoughtful and scholarly.' More recently, Chambers noted that peers describe him as 'incredibly smart. He has a wonderful manner and is tough and forceful without being combative' (2012) and described him as 'knowledgeable, capable and sophisticated'...'terrific, civic-minded individual who is a businessman as well as a lawyer' (2007). John is listed by Legal 500 USA 2009 as absolutely first-rate, just superb. Legal 500 also states that John is at his best with investor clients, and represents a large number of financial institutions and pension funds.

John has been with Mayer Brown since 1971. Previously (1970-1971), he served as law clerk to the Honorable Spotswood W. Robinson III, US Court of Appeals, Washington, DC. John is listed in such peer-selected professional directories as World's Leading Real Estate Lawyers, Best Lawyers in America, Leading American Attorneys, The International Who's Who of Real Estate Lawyers, and The International Who's Who of Business Lawyers.


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Office Information

John J. Gearen

71 S. Wacker Drive
ChicagoIL 60606


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