From the blog
Susan Smith Blakely

The Truth About Developing Business——Perfect For Women Lawyers!

I have shared things by my friend Grover Cleveland --- the lawyer, silly, not the former POTUS! --- with you before, and here is another opportunity.  This article addresses the daunting task of developing business as a critical element of advancing in a law firm and gaining independence in your practice.  Nothing is more important for a young lawyer, as you have heard me say so many times before. Networking and developing business for your law firm is something that most lawyers do not relish.  Not even the most successful among them.  But, you have to get over that and…

read more

Desi Lance

Rain or Shine?

"If a window of opportunity appears, don't pull down the shade." – Tom Peters Sometimes it’s hard to tell when the right opportunity comes along. I had been working as a US immigration lawyer for just shy of one year when I came across a position at a different company that intrigued me. My initial thoughts were nothing would come of it because the firm wanted an attorney with more experience than I had at that point. However, my approach to work (and life in general) is that you don’t know anything until you try. So, that’s what I did… …

read more


A Parliament of OWLs (Older Wiser Learners): Suddenly Seymour?

During first semester final exams, I had Nessun Dorma sung by Pavarotti running endlessly through my head.  The epic grandeur of Puccini’s lyrics, repeating “no one’s sleeping,” that deep sonorous repeat of the title line resonated to my stomach.  I was in a monumental mood. For years to come, I will associate this music with that time of my life.  It made me feel that I was engaged in something serious and important and dramatic. This semester, things feel a little different.  I swear, I am not capable of selecting the earworm that follows me at any particular time.  It…

read more

Hua Wang

Can Chicago be the Next Silicon Valley?

Chicago startup stars, such as Groupon, Orbitz, The Onion, GrubHub and 37signals, have helped make the city a new breeding ground for entrepreneurship.  These successful companies are charting the way for a new economy and an environment where high-growth entrepreneurship and innovation can thrive. Already, the city has over a thousand digital tech companies, and investors increasingly consider it an entrepreneurial hotbed.  Chicago is becoming an increasingly attractive place to launch new ventures, and it is fast transforming itself into a global hub for new ideas.  Look out, Silicon Valley– Chicago is catching up. Allure The Windy City is haunted…

read more


An Open Letter To Mary StoneWallCraft

Dear Mary Stonewallcraft, As a woman who wrote The Vindication of the rights of Woman, during a time in history when women’s rights work was seen as a forbidden path, I heartily commend you for your work. Your arguments on behalf of your sex not only hold historic value, but a pertinent key to the destructive cycle that condemns the natural state of women and glorifies the natural state of men. If you would look at the current state of society, it will not reflect the true nature of both sexes. When I go back to your text on discussing…

read more

Heather Asher

Ms. JD’s 2017 Annual Conference - Tell Us Your Thoughts!

Ms. JD is extremely thankful for the attendees that filled the room, speakers that informed and inspired and for all the dedicated volunteers at Ms. JD's 8th Annual Conference "Superwomen JDs" at NYU School of Law on February 19, 2016.  Please take a moment to view the conference recap, reflections from a Ms. JD fellow and photos. We're now moving forward!  Please click here to tell us what you want to see at Ms. JD's 9th Annual Conference in 2017!  This survey will close on Friday, May 13, 2016.

read more


Join MSJDN on May 12 to celebrate military spouses in the legal profession!

You are invited to attend MSJDN’s Annual Reception on Thursday, May 12, 2016! Our yearly celebration brings together the legal and business communities with military spouse attorneys to learn about how these amazing men and women balance a legal career with the unique demands of the military lifestyle. We recognize employers who support our members and express our gratitude to those making a difference for military families in the workplace. This year is special as MSJDN marks its 5th anniversary and celebrates the incredible changes in licensing and support for military spouse attorneys accomplished in those five years. We look forward…

read more


The Law and Reality TV- Reflection on “Sisters in Law”  and the Impact on Black Women Attorneys

WE tv launched the premier to its newest reality show at the end of March called “The Sisters in Law".  The show follows 6 black female attorneys in Houston, Texas. Now, I must admit that I am obsessed with watching reality television shows, and I like my reality television really dramatic.  "The Real Housewives of Atlanta" and basically any reality TV show on VH1, 9 times out of 10 is set to record on my DVR. And you better believe I’ve been tuned into the “Sisters in Law”.  But, I often find myself internally conflicted watching many of my favorite…

read more


That Pre-Law Millennial: Lots and Lots of Ms. JD Love!!

It is no secret that I am a massive fan of Ms. JD. Over the last year or so, I've found myself warmly welcomed into the Ms. JD community by an incredible group of lawyers and law students—mentors, who have all been wonderfully generous with their time and advice. At the same time, however, I had also only interacted with many of these amazing women online through the Ms. JD blog and other social media platforms. April, therefore, has been a particularly exciting month. I had the opportunity to meet not one—but two—of my superstar Ms. JD mentors in-person when…

read more


My Late-bloomer LSAT (and Law School) Success Story

When I was 28 years old, I was working as a Communications Director for a legislator in California. This was the first time in my life that I was exposed to legislation or lawmaking; I was worried that at my age, any ship that would get me close to being able to work in crafting legislation had sailed. It wasn’t until I met a woman, herself in her mid thirties and a 2L, that the possibility of going to law school entered my mind. Fast forward 2 years. A few weeks ago, I received word of my acceptance to Northwestern Pritzker School…

read more


The Benefits of a Judicial Internship: An Interview with Hon. Wilma Guzman.

The legal profession has many unique experiences to offer a future attorney.  One way of gaining experience in the legal field is through an internship with a judge.  Serving as a judicial intern can have a lasting impression on the direction of your career as an attorney because not only can an internship help you to be a more favorable candidate to potential employers, it also exposes you to different court processes you would not get in law school, including the thought processes of a judge and lawyering skills of other attorneys. I interviewed Justice Wilma Guzman, an accomplished magistrate serving…

read more


FREE 6-Month Trial ABA Membership

Ms. JD is proud to share this opportunity with you on behalf of the American Bar Association. The ABA is experiencing an unprecedented era of female leadership. Women are leading the ABA’s Board, task forces, committees and practice specialty groups. You can be part of the ABA’s Community of Powerful Career Women. The ABA is offering a free 6-month trial ABA membership and free practice specialty group. Join by May 31, 2016, for a chance to win a $500 Brooks Brothers gift card. Terms and conditions apply. Photo Credit: American Bar Association 

read more


10X10: 100 Mentor and Allies, Part 1

Below you will find the first ten women on our list of 100 Mentors and Allies--women who we have met and gotten to know, women who have set superlative standards for excellence in everything they do. In Franks's words: "You will recognize some, but not most.  But know this - Ms. JD is all about your network and I bet more than ninety percent of these women would gladly take your call.  You have the makings of your list now and you’ll add names with each passing year."  **** I'm thrilled to launch this list with one of the best mentors and allies I've…

read more


Ms. Pre-JD: Soft Skills and Meeting Delida Costin

Just last week, I had the incredible opportunity to hear Delida Costin, a Ms. JD Writer-In-Residence, speak to a group of pre-law undergraduates at Columbia University. Delida has worked as general counsel at, where she assisted with their sale to LinkedIn, and at Pandora, where she also built the legal team that took Pandora public and served as the first senior vice president and secretary. Most recently, she founded a law firm. Hearing her share with us some of this wealth of personal experience served as an amazing learning opportunity. She spoke extensively on the difference between working in-house and…

read more

Susan Smith Blakely

Being a Women Lawyer of Color is a Particular Challenge

Recently, I was asked to speak to a bar association made up of minority women.  I was fully equipped and engaged to do that.  The issues that I write about are applicable to all women lawyers, and I always welcome as much diversity as possible in my audiences. However, this request was a little different.  This time, I was being asked to address the issues challenging women of color in our profession because they are minorities.  As much as I love to speak to most audiences, I respectfully declined.  Not because it was an audience made up of women unlike…

read more

National Programming Sponsors