Erin Clifford, J.D.
Certified Holistic Health and Wellness Coach
Erin Clifford J.D., M.A., is deeply passionate about helping lawyers establish healthy lifestyles to create a more fulfilling, productive, and happier existence. She has trained with some of the world’s leading experts in nutrition, exercise, diet theories, and healthy lifestyle management. She loves to empower lawyers with her knowledge and expertise so they have sustainable education and tools that they can put to work to lead healthier and happier lives.
Erin leads webinars for bar organizations on wellness topics for lawyers throughout the nation and speaks on all areas of wellness – from nutrition, to exercise, to healthy lifestyle management. Her expertise in wellness has earned her media attention from publications including Shape Magazine, US News and World Report, Prevention Magazine, and more.
In addition to being a health and wellness coach, Erin is the Director of Marketing and Business Development at Clifford Law Offices, a top personal injury law firm in Chicago. She provides overall management of strategic business development, such as planning, coordinating, and implementation of marketing and business plans.
Erin earned her Juris Doctorate from DePaul College of Law. She clerked for five years at the Illinois Appellate Court, First District for the Honorable Justice Terrence J. Lavin and then for a period as legal counsel at the Cook County Treasurer’s Office. She has a Master’s Degree in Mental Health Counseling from Northwestern and is a National Certified Counselor.
Erin’s Health and Wellness Journey
Erin’s journey in wellness began when she was a teenager growing up in the Northwest suburbs of Chicago. Although she did not necessarily maintain the healthiest diet — mac and cheese and pizza were her staples — her parents were proponents of physical fitness, and from a young age, encouraged her to participate in many extracurricular activities that kept her active and fit. She also worked out regularly with her father, attorney Robert Clifford, and immediately fell in love with both the physical and mental well-being that regular exercise provided. It became a life-long commitment.
When she attended Northwestern University, she was introduced to her first Whole Foods, a turning point in realizing that another key component to wellness is healthy eating. Erin began to integrate healthier foods and eating habits into her daily life. She realized that not only did eating more nutritious food help her maintain an ideal physique, but it also provided her with energy and a glow that made her hungry to learn more. Nutrition and healthy living became a passion and way of life.
Erin continually educated herself with cutting-edge information on health and has evolved her lifestyle toward optimal health and wellness. She first became inspired to pursue a practice as a wellness coach during her tenure as a Chicago Public School teacher. She created lesson plans every night to share with her students, but what she did not anticipate were the lessons she would learn from her students about their challenges in health and wellness and how it impacted their daily lives, including their ability to learn. Many of these bright, young minds were fighting obesity and were well on their way to developing severe health conditions, such as Type II diabetes. Some of her students would come to school having eaten Pop-Tarts or Cheetos for breakfast. Others came to school without having eaten anything at all.
This reality served as a “call to action,” and she promised herself that one day she would utilize her skills and her commitment to helping impact people’s lives through educating and counseling families about healthy living and the prevention of disease. Erin also earned a law degree, and as part of the legal community, saw how important a healthy lifestyle is for over-stressed professionals. Every day she encounters friends and colleagues who neglect their health and develop preventable diseases, many at an early age. Wellness education is critical in today’s society where fast food can no longer be king, yet people do not take the time to learn what they need – even some simple steps – that can help them for a lifetime.
Health and Wellness Coaching and Training for Lawyers and Law Firms
Erin attended the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and completed its rigorous Health Coach Training Program. She studied more than 100 dietary theories, practical lifestyle management techniques, and innovative life coaching methods with some of the world’s top health and wellness experts. She continues her studies under the tutelage of renowned health professionals. In 2020, she earned a new nutrition certification from Precision Training and became a certified meditation instructor. Her vast educational background has equipped her with extensive knowledge in holistic nutrition, wellness coaching, and preventative health. Drawing on her skills and knowledge, Erin is passionate about personally working with lawyers, individually and collectively at law firms doing training, to help them make lifestyle changes that are not only appropriate for their age, gender, work life, and pocketbook, but produce real and lasting results.
She firmly believes that superior health is the cornerstone to ensuring a long, vibrant life. Her life’s journey thus far demonstrates that this is what she was meant to do.
Erin is an advocate of giving back and helping the Chicago community. She serves as a board member on the Friends of Prentice Board, an organization committed to superior healthcare spanning the full spectrum of a woman’s life. In addition, Erin serves as a board member for the Chicago High School for the Arts. ChiArts is a Chicago Public School dedicated to fostering scholar-artists through its intensive pre-professional training program in the arts, combined with a comprehensive college preparatory curriculum.
Erin is also one of the Board of Trustees for WTTW and WFMT. The Board is comprised of a broad spectrum of Chicago’s corporate, civic, and philanthropic leaders. With the Board’s assistance, WTTW and WFMT are one of the most-watched public television in the country and have been regularly recognized as the premier classical music radio station in the United States.