Erica Nichols Cook is the director of the Wrongful Conviction Division of the Iowa State Public Defender. Previously, she was an assistant appellate defender In Illinois, an adjunct professor of law at Southern Illinois University, a staff attorney with the Illinois Innocence Project where she investigated and litigated non-DNA cases and supervised both undergraduate and law students. Prior to her time with the Illinois Innocence Project, Erica was an assistant Cook County public defender in Chicago. She earned her J.D. from Drake Law School, where she was a Public Service Scholar and Ferguson Gold Award recipient. She received her B.A. in Arts Degree from the University of Illinois, Springfield.