Bruce Bonjour is the firm’s chair of its Public Finance practice. Bruce previously served as the firm’s co-chair of its Financial Transactions and Restructuring Group from 2005 to 2010. Bruce has three major areas of focus: structured finance concentrating in the hospitality sector, municipal finance, serving as bond counsel as well as representing underwriters and credit enhancers, and New Markets Tax Credits.
Since 1996 when he served as bond counsel for the tax exempt financing of an 800 room Hyatt Hotel located at McCormick Place in Chicago, Bruce has represented owners of business and luxury class hotels in financings in excess of ten billion dollars. Recent financings (2011-2014) include transactions involving the acquisition, financing, refinancing or restructuring of ownership of Hotel del Coronado, Scottsdale Fairmont Princess, The Homestead Resort, Barton Creek Spa & Resort, JW Marriott Essex House, Grove Park Inn, Ritz Carlton Hotels in Laguna Beach and Half Moon Bay California, Chicago Fairmont, Loews Santa Monica, Westin St. Francis Hotel in San Francisco, the Miami and Chicago InterContinental Hotels, Four Seasons Hotels in Washington D.C. and Punta Mita and Hyatt La Jolla.
Bruce also represents several recipients of New Markets Tax Credits from the U.S. Treasury Department, including serving in the capacity of outside general counsel to the recipient of the second largest aggregate dollar amount of New Markets Tax Credit allocations. He is responsible for developing the legal structure, fund formation and related equity and debt transactions in connection with multiple clients who have received in excess of $1 billion of such credits.
In addition to serving as the firm’s chair of the Public Finance Department, Bruce continues to serve as bond counsel and advise other clients in tax-exempt and taxable municipal finance transactions. Recently transactions included serving as bond counsel for five of the eight CDFI Fund/US Treasury-guaranteed series of bonds issued under the CDFI Bond Guarantee Program authorized by the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010 (12 USC 1413a). He also recently served as bond counsel for the refunding of tobacco master settlement bonds which capitalized South Dakota’s permanent trust fund used to provide enhanced funding of statewide K-12 public education. Earlier in his career, Bruce served as bond counsel or counsel for the underwriters for several high-profile projects, such as the multi-billion-dollar expansion/renovation of McCormick Place and Navy Pier in Chicago, including the tax-exempt financing of the Hyatt Hotel at McCormick Place in 1996, bond counsel for the complete renovation of Soldier Field, counsel to the underwriters for the refinancing of (f/k/a) Comiskey Park, and served as bond counsel, counsel to underwriters and credit enhancers for hundreds of other tax-exempt financings for health, higher education, museums, local government and nonprofit facilities in Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Kentucky, Illinois, Indiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming.
- Listed in the Law Bulletin Publishing Company's Leading Lawyers Network as Illinois Leading Lawyer
- Listed in The Best Lawyers in America 2013 - Present: Public Finance Law
*The Supreme Court of Illinois does not recognize certifications of specialties in the practice of law and no certificate, award or recognition is a requirement to practice law in Illinois.
- National Association Bond Attorneys, 1979 - present
- American College of Bond Counsel, Fellow, 2014
- Altheimer & Gray, Chicago, IL, Partner, Finance Practice Group Chair
- County of San Diego, California, Associate Legislative Representative