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The Firms Where You Are Most Likely to Make Partner

Working Mother Magazine didn't rank firms by how many of their partners are female, but I'll do it (using their data)! Of the fifty firms named "best for women" by WMM and Flex-Time Lawyers, which firms have the highest proportions of equity (profit-sharing) and nonequity partners? The standouts are Folger Levin & Kahn (San Francisco), Ice Miller (Indianapolis), Armstrong Teasdale (St. Louis), and Katten Muchin Rosenman (Chicago). [More after the jump]It seems noteworthy that none of these firms is headquartered on the East Coast, even though most of the firms in the WMM list are. The firm that leaps out…

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The 50 Best Law Firms for Women

Click here to go straight to the list.Flex-Time Lawyers and Working Mother Magazine have just released a ranking of "The 50 Best Law Firms for Women." It is the September cover story of WMM. You can download PDFs of the press release and two articles at Debbie Henry's website: Young, Gifted and Leaving, and Making Partner. I wanted to get this news item posted for y'all ASAP, so I will be back to post some more when I have read through the methodology. Meanwhile, I have a couple of comments based on what Debbie has told me in the past…

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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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BigLaw fit for women?

I want to take a minute to go against the grain and ask the seemingly counter-intuitive question about women in the profession: Could Big Law be the best place for us to practice law?I was asked by a new acquaintance last week if I thought I could handle the "negative work environment" of the big firm. My response was that I think I actually prefer a negative work environment. More about that perhaps-unusual answer in a future post. For now, I'd like to explore why I think that big organizations are better for women. The idea for this blog was…

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The Gender Gap - Conquered?

THE GENDER GAP: CONQUERED? “Women’s rights” is not exactly a new concept. So, why are we still having this discussion? I think it’s because while women can vote, enter professions, and sit on the Supreme Court, the insidious and underlying issues that women confront remain the same. Earlier this year, the New York Times ran a series of articles under the title “The New Gender Divide,” focusing on women leaving men in the dust in school. Well, that may be so, but succeeding in school is not translating into comparable success professionally. Looking at the information on law firms thrust…

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“Opt -in”—The new buzz word?

Heller Ehrman, a big San Francisco-based law firm, has a new project called "Opt-in." A very telling and optimistic statement on the project's website says, "We do not see a conflict with professionals seeking both fulfilling lives and rewarding careers, and we recognize that in helping all professionals find this balance, our industry will not only be able to recruit the best and the brightest, but also retain them."Here's my voice in response to that boldness: "Yeah! Go for it! The sooner the better! I want a life and a firm job!"The project claims to be looking for the solution…

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Billables: on their way out?

Over at the WSJ Law Blog, they have a post up today entitled "The Billable Hour: Still the Lead Dog, But Gaining Competition" on some changes to the standard billing practice of law firms, namely the alternative practice of using fixed fees for legal services: “Cisco, a leader in the area of so-called alternative billing, now farms out 70% to 75% of its annual legal budget, estimated at $125 million, under fixed-fee arrangements.” This follows a speech on the state of technology in the law by Cisco’s General Counsel, Mark Chandler (mentioned earlier here) in which he highlighted the decrepit…

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Women only attorney-client events

The blog "Above the Law" has this snarky post today about a woman only attorney-client event that centered around designer shoe shopping.Okay, disclaimer #1: I love shoes. I'm addicted to designer shoes. Disclaimer #2: I like to shop for my shoes alone. I dislike having my husband or friends there and I really can't stand having my kids there. I feel like the shoe shopping process needs to be deliberate and cannot be rushed. I also understand that the process drags on for spectators, kind of like baseball does for me when I'm a spectator while it is certainly invigorating…

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BigLaw Swag and Sway

As most of my other posts reveals, I enjoy skimming

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The Importance of Planning A Career:  It’s Never Too Soon to Start

I wrote this article about a year ago, entitled "Treating Family Like Business." I believe that it provides useful advice for young female attorneys embarking on their careers. Best of luck with your project and as Cornell Law School alum (Class of 1988), I'm glad to see that you've got a Cornellian on board. Carolyn Elefant

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