Rigel S. Massaro

Cracks in the Glass Ceiling

Each of us brings to our job, whatever it is, our lifetime of experience and our values.Sandra Day O'ConnorIf we are to achieve a richer culture--one rich in contrasting values--we must recognize the whole gamut of human potentialities, and so weave a less arbitrary social fabric, one in which each diverse human gift will find a fitting place.Margaret MeadLast month I completed my first year of law school at the University of Arizona, where 50% + of the student body is female and all of our deans are women. I am currently interning at Consumers Union, where the 90% of…

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Marisol Juarez Diaz

Is the current legal community capable of representing the interests of our diverse citizenry?

One night, the first African-American Executive Director of the Arizona State Bar responded to an alarm that had been triggered at the State Bar Building. Security officials at the scene assumed she was a burglar.A proud Chicana, I have become impassioned by the dialogue that shadows diversity and ultimately equality, especially as the first woman in my family to attend law school. Since leaving my position at the University of Arizona's Chicano/Hispano Student Affairs to attend law school, I miss the communication and discussion sparked among my colleagues and students about advancing the cause. Thus, while I was at a…

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Victoria Tsoong

Perspective: From a women’s college to a co-ed law class

Coming directly from a women's college to law school, I confronted an unexpected hurtle--a co-ed classroom. In my youth, I attended co-ed schools, but was fortunate to take the opportunity to attend Scripps College of the Claremont Colleges. During college, I was able to gain confidence as a woman and was able to understand what it meant to be a woman in society. I emerged from Scripps confident and independent. Despite the lessons learned from a women's college, I found that, even in this day and age, the legal realm is still adapting to women in executive positions. I had…

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Sarah Cline

A Wake-Up Call

Women lawyers still have a fight on their hands to gain true equality. Unfortunately, the greatest hindrance in this fight may be women themselves, by way of their complacency.Although history reveals extraordinary cases of American women practicing law since colonial times, it is not until very recently that women's presence in the legal profession has increased beyond these largely unknown and unrecognized crusaders. [1] Abigail Adams cautioned her husband to "remember the ladies" in creating the legal and political structure of this nation, but women had no voice in that process, and as a result their interests were unrepresented and…

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Anonymous

My Dream Firm

Daydreams of the perfect firm--from a public interest lawyer who found existing firms too flawed to join.Being a woman entering the legal profession is something that I think about often, although as a young girl growing up, it is a topic I never imagined I would have to consider. Growing up in the 1980s, girls were empowered to try to both outsmart and outrun boys as we played on their sports teams and competed against them in academic competitions. We watched our mothers or our friends' mothers work. We were groomed to go to college before we settled down to…

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Anonymous

Steps

Though the challenges facing women in the legal field today seem overwhelming, countless women have paved the way. I think of former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor and current Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. I think of Senator and presidential contender Hillary Clinton. I think of Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.There are many challenges facing women in the legal field today. For example, a recent study has found that women lawyers in general receive on average 80% of the salary received by men who are equal to them in seniority. Like many other women in other fields, women in the…

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Anonymous

Lawyering Phenomenally

Maya Angelou said, "A woman who is convinced that she deserves to accept only the best, challenges herself to give the best. Then she is living phenomenally." This is the way I approach my legal career."Funny business, a woman's career: the things you drop on the way up the ladder so you can move faster. You forget you'll need them again when you get back to being a woman. It's one career all females have in common, whether we like it or not: being a woman. Sooner or later we've got to work at it, no matter how many other…

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Three Paths

My oldest sister Lindsay always knew she wanted to be a doctor. My middle sister Jennifer graduated at the top of her college class but wanted to be a stay-at-home-mom. I want the best of both worlds. My childhood was filled with demands from my father to "become a professional" in the future. He didn't care whether that meant becoming a doctor or a lawyer, but my two older sisters and I all knew he only wanted us to pursue one of those avenues. My father is a doctor who has practiced family medicine for thirty years. My mother, a…

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Grace M. Guisewite

Getting over it

The average law student is a woman, and her average superior is a man. I cared for about ten minutes and then got over it. Women and the law should not be a shocking relationship. It should not immediately conjure up the term "family law," nor invoke the picture of a single, suit-clad woman charging through the streets of New York, Blackberry in tow. Women and the law should simply be. The reality is that the average law student will be a female, but her superior will be a man. In a profession predicated upon teamwork this should not matter,…

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Erin Wiley

Meet Louise Arbour

I have come to realize that role models and mentors play important parts in the lives of aspiring female lawyers. I knew that I wanted to study law when, in 2000, I attended a presentation by Louise Arbour, former Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, and now United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. As a fifteen year-old young woman, I was inspired by the intelligence, passion, and concern for the world which she demonstrated. I was also moved by the contribution she has made in the world through her work in the field of…

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