10X10: Celebrating 10 Years of Ms. JD with 100 Mentors and Allies

Hands down, some of my favorite articles on Ms. JD are those written by the late Frank Kimball. If you haven't yet read You're Not Networking--You're Conencting or Why You Must Know a Little About Football, do yourself a favor and go check those out. And then you'll want to read Practing & Parenting, parts I, II, and III. And then you'll probably want to read the rest of Frank's posts

But I'm not writing today simply to share Frank's past posts. That's just the warm up. I'm writing today to launch my 2016 Ms. JD project. I'm leaving the board this spring (sob!), but you can't get rid of me just yet (or, let's be real, ever).

So, what do I have planned? 

I'm gonna finish something that Frank started. In 2011, Frank was working on a list of 100 reasons he supported Ms. JD. It all started with a conversation Frank had with a Partner at a law fim holiday party. In his own words:

“So Frank, what do you do outside family and the office.”

And I say “this year I spent about 250 hours working with Ms. JD.” 

Dead stop. 

“What’s Ms JD?” 

I explain.

Dead Stop 2.  But this isn’t my first rodeo. 

His final question, “Tell me one reason why you would spend time doing that.

“Well, I have at least a 100.” 

“Name ‘em.”

I said “well take a seat this is going to take a while.” We made a friendly wager which was enough to motivate all concerned and ordered another round. I decided to just name 100 women who I have met and gotten to know during my career who have set superlative standards for excellence in everything that I’ve seen them do. 

Frank started his list with ten women. Unfortunately, Frank died before he finished the list on Ms. JD. I'm intent on picking up the baton and running with it (pretty sure Frank would approve of my sporty analogies here).  For Ms. JD's 10th anniversary, I will do 10 posts, with each post featuring 10 women (hence my title, 10X10). I'll be looking to the Ms. JD Board and Alum for help rolling out the list and telling the tales of these astoinishing women. I'm pretty sure Frank would approve of the Hall of Fame we are compiling.

By the way, as Frank said: "While it’s easy to be intimidated by spectacular people from all walks of life, remember that, like you, they started out with a degree and a dream.  They achieved their dream and have more dreams before them today. In your own life you will encounter excellence unexpectedly - of extraordinary people doing incredible things in their every day lives. Not for accolades. Not for fortune. Not for fame. But because it is the right thing to do and the only way they know how to live.  And for that all of us should be eternally grateful."

Personally, I'm eternally grateful to Frank for so much good advice over the years, to the Ms. JD Board (past and present) for supporting all my crazy ideas (including this one), and to Ms. JD for 10 years of excellence. I may be leaving the board in 2016 but, friends, I'm only getting started. Happy 2016! 

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