Our Team

Frank Pellegrini

Frank_Pellegrini Frank Pellegrini, Prairie Title CEO and past president of the American Land Title Association, has been in the title insurance business since 1978. He has been a practicing lawyer in Illinois since 1976. Frank, together with his wife, Mary, founded Prairie Title in 1983 in response to a recognized need in a niche market area, which had been largely ignored by other title companies in the Chicago area.

Frank has maintained his law practice while growing Prairie Title. He practices with his partner, Maria Cristiano, under the firm name Pellegrini & Cristiano. The law firm concentrates on transactional matters with an emphasis in all aspects of real estate law. Conducting an active law practice while running the title company gives Frank Pellegrini a view from all sides of the real estate transaction. This perspective includes contractual issues, real estate brokerage issues, disclosure and mortgage lending concerns. The dovetailing of a hands-on law practice with title and escrow operations serves to enhance the breadth of experience, which he is able to bring to the service of the title company’s clients.

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Mary Pellegrini


Mary is the third generation of her family involved in real estate in the Oak Park area.   She enjoys the work, especially from the historical perspective revealed through searching and examination of documents recorded against properties. To read for instance, the phrase “Mills & Sons Subdivision” which is quite common in the Chicago area and to be familiar with that family’s home, which is located in Oak Park and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places, is to view your own community in a unique way.  She also loves the closing process; helping buyers achieve the dream of home ownership is very rewarding work.

Mary’s professional background includes 10 years of retail management with Marshall Field & Co., 3 years of sales management with an import wholesale firm and 28 years of general experience in the title insurance industry at Prairie Title.  Presently she works with the sales team and customer service unit, as well as serves on the board of the Illinois Land Title Association (ILTA).

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Donna Krzanik

Donna_KrzanikDonna Krzanik is Prairie Title’s Title Production Manager. She is responsible for all facets of the title production process for residential and commercial transactions. Donna came to Prairie Title when the company purchased Investors Title. Donna has been in the title industry for nearly 40 years, starting in the business when she was 17.


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Demetrius Cole

Demetrius Cole has over 10 years of experience in closing various types or real estate transactions in and around the Chicago-land area. He has had the opportunity to work with a lot of great title companies, from big, mid-size, to small operations. Demetrius knows what it takes to be efficient, professional at all times, and successful in many positions within the title industry. He has headed recording departments, been in charge of file retention and imaging procedures, headed a refinance disbursement department at the height of the mortgage boom, coordinated HUD’s, and was a very successful title insurance sales representative. He has hands on experience working with a variety of title software programs such as Soft-pro, TEAM, Ram Quest, and AIM. Delivering a HIGH level of customer service, at all times, is #1 on his list.

In his new role as the Closing Manager for Prairie Title, his goal is to implement higher levels of working efficiencies within his department, stress the importance of maintaining a high level of customer services with all clients, and promoting a company culture of helping one another, open communication with one another and having fun at the same time.

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Maria Cristiano

Maria_CristianoMaria is general counsel of Prairie Title and a partner in Pellegrini & Cristiano, an Oak Park law firm. Maria is a 1987 graduate of De Paul College of Law who focuses on real estate, estate planning, probate practice and business law. She is a member of the Illinois State Bar Association.





Van Hante

Van_HanteVan Hante directs Prairie Title’s Attorney Agent ALLIANCE program, focusing on providing customer service to existing attorney agents and signing new agents to work with Prairie Title. Van is a 1976 graduate of MacMurray College with a Bachelor of Arts degree with honors in political science and sociology. Van did post-graduate work at Roosevelt University, earning a paralegal certificate in real estate in 1977.

Immediately after earning his paralegal certificate, Van was a paralegal with the law firm of Shapiro & Kreisman. Following that, he was a title examiner at Chicago Title for two years before running his own title search company until he joined Prairie Title.



Michael Guerin

Michael Guerin websiteI come to Prairie Title with a long standing interest in the Real Estate industry.  I graduated in 2001 with a Bachelor in Arts from Northern Illinois University.  Since that time, I have worked as a HUD builder for First American Title, Graphic Designer and Internet Marketer for a Publishing Firm in Chicago.

Outside work, I enjoy sports, biking, reading, traveling, and trying almost anything new.  My two young children, Ethan and Kaitlyn, keep me busy.

I am excited to be with a great company that truly values its most important asset, it’s customer.



Brian Zeng

Brian Zeng

Brian is an Account Executive for Prairie Title servicing the lending community and attorney agents.  He graduated from Western Illinois University in 2002 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications.  Brian has been working in the title insurance industry managing customer accounts for over 10 years.  His experience has taught him that each transaction and customer is unique. Brian treats each with dedication and attention.

Brian and his wife Stacy have two children, Brennon and Claira, and are expecting their third shortly.  When they are not chasing the kids around the house they all enjoy shooting hoops, swimming, barbecues, spending time with family, and watching the Bears.



Steve Gillum

Steve Gillum website

Steve is an Account Executive for Prairie Title who is dedicated to the needs of our commercial clients.

He graduated magna cum laude from the University of South Florida in Tampa with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business, and has over ten years of experience in the title insurance industry, including seven years as a national commercial representative.

He enjoys serving as a tireless advocate for clients, while ensuring the highest professional standards and practices.  His approach balances determination, creativity and resourcefulness in finding solutions for the unique and complex challenges of commercial real estate transactions.

On weekends, Steve enjoys time with family and friends, the outdoors, running, serving as an active member of his church, and volunteering his time in the community.





Read news and articles from our CEO
on residential and commercial title insurance

View his blog here

Did you Know?
Our online title ordering system is now integrated with Encompass.
Title customers need to know the industry's language. To assist you in this regard we have compiled this glossary of words and terms used in the title industry. Below is a list of terms in Adobe Acrobat Reader format.

Glossary of Title Terms

Contact Info

6821 West North Avenue
Oak Park, IL 60302

+1 708-386-7900
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Prairie Title Service Co., Title Companies & Agents, Oak Park, IL

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