Robert Byers Wilcox Jr. passed away on February 18, 2021, at the age of 72, in his home and surrounded by his family. Bob is survived by his wife, Barbara Hermansen, and their two children, Benjamin and Katharine.
The eldest son of Robert Wilcox Sr. and Laura Winston Wilcox, Bob and his four siblings grew up in Winnetka, Illinois. Bob graduated from Harvard in 1970 and moved to the Bay Area, where he spent a decade working as a car mechanic, living in a commune, and playing the mandolin before earning a JD and MBA from the University of California, Berkeley.
In 1984, Bob moved back to Chicago and joined Schiff Hardin as a transactional attorney. He built a successful practice at the intersection of intellectual property protection and market systems licensing.
In 1990, Bob married Barbara, a litigator at Schiff Hardin. Within the span of a few years, they had a son and a daughter, purchased Bob's childhood home in Winnetka, and acquired a dog and a station wagon. Bob adored fatherhood and devoted himself completely to family life. He took particular pleasure in puttering around the yard or patio, jogging at dawn on the Green Bay Trail, and coaching his kids' Little League and AYSO teams. Nothing gave Bob more joy than his thirty-one years of marriage to Barbara.
In addition to wife, his children, and their partners, Matthew Hartzler and Nadine Lehner, Bob is survived by his siblings Steven Wilcox (Kathleen) of Chandler, Arizona, Katherine Lambert (Ian) of Whitefish Bay, Wisconsin, David Wilcox (Melynda) of Alexandria, Virginia, and Brian Wilcox (Amy) of Brentwood, Tennessee. He is already so deeply missed by his family, which also includes beloved nieces and nephews and sisters- and brothers-in law.
In lieu of flowers, Bob wished that donations in his memory be sent to the Environmental Law & Policy Center (elpc.org
), an organization founded by his father to serve as legal advocates for the Midwest's wild and natural places.
Published by Chicago Tribune from Feb. 22 to Feb. 25, 2021.