Oliver Close, LLC, is the oldest continuous law firm in Rockford and Winnebago County, Illinois. Our firm name comes from Robert J. Oliver and Henry J. Close, whom we remember fondly for their exceptional professional careers and our deep, personal friendships.  They are missed.

Robert J. Oliver

Robert J. Oliver died March 29, 2020. Robert received a B.S. and J.D. from Northwestern University. After he practiced in the Department of Justice, Antitrust Division, he returned to Rockford, and engaged in a general practice of law, including commercial transactions, corporations and general business, banking, antitrust, taxation, wills, trusts and estate planning and commercial litigation.  He retired in 2016 after nearly 60 years of practice.

Henry J. Close

Henry J. Close died May 8, 2021. Henry received an A.B. from Regis College and a J.D. from Loyola University. After practicing as an attorney at McDonald’s Corporation, Henry moved to Rockford, and worked primarily in employment and labor relations (management), corporations and general business, real estate, wills, trusts and estate planning and probate.  He retired at the end of 2013, with more than 50 years of practice.

Karl F. Winkler

Karl F. Winkler died on June 5, 2022. Karl received a B.S. in English from Dartmouth College and a J.D. from the University of Illinois. Karl also served in the United States Army, leaving with the rank of Captain. Karl moved to Rockford in 1969 to start private practice, initially working in both criminal defense and civil ligation, eventually transitioning to focus on civil litigation, real estate and business representation. A former Director and President, Karl was active in and recognized by the Winnebago County Bar Association for more than 50 years of practice, and was actively practicing at the time of his death.