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The Power of the Elevator Speech

Dear Readers- I hope that your fall is off to a good start!  It is hard to believe that October is already here.  As we gear up for Q4, it is a good time to reflect on all that we have accomplished so far this year, and to brainstorm ways we can finish off 2015 by moving the needle on the goals we set for ourselves 9 months ago, including on the business development front. Being our own advocate is an important part of these efforts, and having a powerful and effective elevator speech is essential. In 2013, I wrote a column on this subject, which appeared as an installment of my monthly "Paradigm Shift" column in…

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Ladies of the House (and Senate): So you want to run for office?

When I was young, I had a motto that I doodled on notebooks or wrote in yearbooks: “Peggy in 2012.” It referred to my future campaign in the first Presidential election year after I reached the Constitutional age of eligibility. Spoiler Alert: I didn’t run in 2012. While I haven’t run for office myself (yet), I have had the chance to work on campaigns in various capacities over the years: from envelope-licking volunteer on 1992 Clinton-Gore to managing a city-wide candidate for city council in 2011. Plus, I’ve learned a lot from the legislators that I’ve worked with over the…

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South Carolina Women Lawyers Association - June President’s Message

June 8, 2015 Re:      Are We Having Fun, Yet? “Midlife,” they say, “is where fun goes to die.”  Really?  Well, not if I have anything to do with it. Dr. Marguerite here, with your “RX” for June:  Have more fun!  Sing, dance, drive a go-kart.  Have two big laughs tonight and call me in the morning. It turns out that fun and games are good for you.  When women get out and “play,” they cope better with stress, which sets up protective mechanisms that contribute to health and wellbeing.  Apparently, when it comes to stress prevention, fun and play can create a suit of armor. I do not…

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South Carolina Women Lawyers Association - May President’s Message

This May, we celebrate a law day, a wedding day and a mother’s day. What do these days have in common? Read on. May 1 is Law Day. Founded in 1958, Law Day is a national day to celebrate the rule of law and its contributions to the freedoms Americans enjoy. This Law Day, the American Bar Association is also celebrating the 800 year anniversary of the Magna Carta. Remember that document from history class? Well, of the original 63 clauses, only three remain as law. Most famously, however, the 39th clause gave “all free men” the right to justice…

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Reflections on Revamped Rights for Animals

Progress!! Recently chimpanzees in a New York legal case (Petitioners: The Nonhuman Rights Project, Inc. on Behalf of Hercules and Leo) were granted a writ of habeas corpus (unlawful detainer) against Stony Brook University, on Long Island New York, where they are being held for biomedical experimentation in a research facility. Although the Honorable Barbara Jaffe, Justice of the New York Supreme Court case, later struck down that exact wording on the court order (see link to the document below). The court order remains nonetheless executory to show cause, and the omission of those exact words (habeas corpus) does not change the meaning…

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Think Like a Client to Grow a Healthy Practice

You won’t always be the low man on the totem pole. One day, you will have clients of your own, IF you really want to. With so much emphasis placed on research, document review, and shadowing occurring in the first years of a lawyer’s career, it is imperative for the lawyer to take the initiative to increase her exposure and interaction with clients. Often, young lawyers hear their supervisors say they should focus primarily on doing “good work”. In other words, the last thing they would want you to do is to spend time building relationships with clients and potential…

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South Carolina Women Lawyers Association - April President’s Message

April 14, 2015 is Equal Pay Day.  Here are the reasons why this day should matter to everyone reading this letter. The History.  Prior to 1963, it was legal for employers in the United States to pay women less than men for the same job.  In 1963, women were earning 59% of what men were paid.  Congress enacted the Equal Pay Act to eliminate this inequality. The Present.  It has been over 50 years after the passage of the Equal Pay Act and women still do not have pay equality. In 2013, among full-time, year-round workers, women were paid only…

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Recap: Building Her Power Base: Improving Diversity on Law Reviews

Ms. JD and NYU Law Review sat down on 2/25 to discuss our collaboration and the launch of the 2015 Law Review Diversity Survey. The survey examines how women and minorities are represented on law reviews nationwide. During the event we discussed the importance of law review membership and leadership, andsuggestions about how to increase the presence of women and minority law students on law reviews.     [View the story "Building Her Power Base: Improving Diversity on Law Reviews" on Storify]  

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Recommended Video Podcast Series with Professor Nancy Leong: The RightsCast

On Wednesday, January 28 at 2 p.m. ET, University of Denver Sturm College of Law professor Nancy Leong – a specialist in civil rights, constitutional law and civil procedure – will launch an innovative video podcast series about civil rights called The RightsCast. The first episode will feature a discussion with UC Hastings professor of law Scott Dodson on his new book about United States Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.  You can preview their discussion here:  Each week, Professor Leong will speak to a different scholar about his or her research via Google Hangout. That video will then be…

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Supreme Ambitions: A Book Review

David Lat, of Above the Law and Underneath Their Robes fame, has released his first novel, Supreme Ambitions. The protagonist, Audrey Coyne, is a smart but socially underdeveloped baby lawyer. After graduating from Harvard and Yale Law School, Audrey takes a clerkship with her judicial idol, Judge Christina Wong Stinson, a rare conservative on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Audrey’s dream is to one day clerk for a Supreme Court justice, and she thinks Judge Stinson may be her ticket to that prestigious clerkship and the perks that come with it. But clerking isn’t all Audrey thought it would…

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