Why Do Women Dominate Public Interest?

I was poking around the Perspectives magazine articles available online, and I came across An Eye-Opening Tool for Wide-Eyed Law Students, a piece last year about the Equal Justice Works ranking of law schools by their public interest programs. I found two things interesting about the article. First, the approximately 27% of law graduates who enter public interest has remained fairly static since the 1980s. Second, women are presumed to benefit more from pressure on law schools to provide more support for public interest job hunting since women are more likely to take public interest jobs (the article cites a…

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Can you take a compliment?

I’ve noticed that I really can’t. Professionally, I seem to demean myself a lot by refusing to accept compliments and by trying to make other people feel more comfortable around me by pretending that I’m not really that good at anything. It's not that I don't think I'm good at anything, it's more that 1) don't want to be seen as a braggart or as someone with a huge ego and 2) my socialized impulse always seems to be brushing off compliments rather than accepting them. I notice that a lot of other women behave similarly, either reflecting a compliment…

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Ms. JD Weekly Roundup

Ms. JD Weekly Roundup: Week Ending November 4

The Feminine CritiqueLisa Belkin illustrates what Ms. JD is calling the Goldilocks Phenomenon: women leaders will either be too much of this or too little of that—in every country, the only guarantee is that women are never perceived as just right. Lawyers Assail Head of Bar for Judge CritiqueTeresa Carr Deni, a judge in Philadelphia, is criticized for “reducing a rape charge to ‘theft of services’ because the victim was a prostitute” Celebs in a Mess Call on These Female Power LawyersGloria Allred, Blair Berk, and Laura Wasser are the go-to ladies when Hollywood faces legal woes.Religion, Culture Cannot Excuse…

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chandra u tiger

Questions about Gender Discrimination?

I have some issues relating to my business and myself that are clearly gender discrimination. I have an attorney who has just disclosed a conflict of interest with the other side's attorney on this matter. What would you do if you believed that your attorney is no longer independent?- a conflict of interest? What is there is evidence of acts taken that prejudiced the case in the favor of the other side?Who is the best national gender discrimination lawyer or law firm that can handle a high profile case involving a CEO level female? Any insights would be appreciated. Thank…

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Money Talks:  The free-market answer to more diversity in law firms

With all the talk about diversity being a good business practice for law firms, it is nice to finally see a client put some pressure on law firms to change. In the November issue of Corporate Counsel magazine there is a short story about General Motors and the demands it makes of its outside counsel to be more diverse. Earlier this year, [GM] became one of the first companies to link reduced billing rates to diversity goals. ...In the second quarter of this year, the law department began a pilot program that sets individual diversity goals for six of its…

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Note to readers

I have recently come up on some personal/political obstacles that will require me to change the name under which I post here on Ms. JD. As Jessie would say, the personal is political. Over the last few months, I have gotten a lot more personal in my posts than I intended (which is good, I think) so I am going to have to make my identity a little more cryptic so that I maintain more control over who knows what I am writing. I am not ashamed of anything that I've written and I whole-heartedly believe in what I've said.…

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Work/Life Balance:  A Student Concern?

Last week I attended an event at my law school presented by a localbar association entitled "Why Lawyers Leave: Creating an Environmentfor Work/Life Balance to Protect Human Capital and Promote Diversity. "Work/life balance expert Deborah Epstein Henry (founder of Flex-TimeLawyers LLC and author of The Cheat Sheet) presented more informationon the "2007 Best Law Firms for Women," her joint project with WorkingMother magazine, which was conveniently featured here on Ms. JD. Shepresented some of the statistics she found while researching for thelist, none of which were all too surprising. She also discussed herlatest article, due out in the next week…

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Clerkship Applications: 2Ls start your engines

No this is not a post encouraging you to break the rules and apply early. But just because your clerkship application isn't due until the fall of your 3L year doesn't mean you don't need to think about it now. A clerkship application consists of a cover letter, resume, transcript, writing sample and letter of recommendation. They all require forethought. Here are the steps 2Ls need to take now to be well positioned to apply next year:Transcript: Yes you need strong grades, but that's not all. Try and take challenging classes, i.e. not too many "Law ands." (No judgment here…

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Ms. JD Weekly Roundup

Ms. JD Weekly Roundup: Week Ending October 28

First Lady Favored in Argentine Presidential ElectionHilary's South American twin? Lawyer, former first lady, and former Senator a favorite in Argentina's presidential election. Women Take the Lead in Rotary Women--including lawyer Grace Connolly, president of Newburyport's Rotary Club--change the Rotary Club from a "good-old-boys club to a more-vibrant organization."Premier Event for Lawyers and Judges Raises $14,000 Tallahassee Women Lawyers honor judges to raise money for their organization Ball State Honors Achievements of Hoosier Women Michealle "Micki" Wilson, executive director of the Indiana Trial Lawyers Association for 30 years, one of six women honored for the 2007 Indiana Women of Achievement…

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Cursing Around Women: Taboo, Offensive, or Get Over it - No Big Deal? had a great article yesterday about one female firm partner's recipe for success. (Thanks to for the tip.) The article was refreshing to me because this particular woman, Mercedes Meyer, has revealed that her secret to success in BigLaw is not trying to get the firm to conform to her needs as a female professional but by trying to conform herself to some of the male-ness of the practice.I was intrigued right from the start because Ms. Meyer credits a book that I've just recently set out to read as a turning point in her professional life:Her eyes…

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