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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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Lydia R.B. Kelley

Tips for Summer Associates: Get the deadline… and the budget

Be sure when you receive an assignment to know the deadline. If the assigning attorney does not give you a deadline, ask for it. Also be sure to receive the budget for a project. The budget is the time the assigning attorney expects you to spend on the project. Many summer associates do not appreciate the importance of the budget. The budget is critical because the time you spend on a project will translate into hours billed to a client. When you ask for the budget or the amount of time to be spent on a project, the responses may…

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The Bar Exam

I am getting ready to take the bar exam for Washington State next week. It is ironic that I am trying to categoraize myself on this website, for my login information. I am no longer a student, not since December 2006, but am I really a professional, yet? I have a JD, but no bar affiliation, so what does that make me. We shall revisit this come May, when bar results return. Till then...yours... Elizabeth Alexander, J.D., but not yet a lawyer.

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Legal Eagle

Bye-bye Buchanan, Hello Brown Stone Nimeroff

News from Philadelphia: three female partners quit to launch their own firm. "[Founding partner Antoinette R. Stone] said as a woman-owned business, the firm will work to obtain opportunities given to women and minority-owned firms by the city and other organizations." Read more at New York Lawyer (free site registration required).

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Defending My Law Firm Job

The other day, I was sitting with a few friends of mine. One is a 3L in law school, currently working at the public defender’s office, but the others are not in the legal profession. We were joking around about what it would be like to defend criminals, and as that discussion came to a close, one of the girls said to me, so, still planning on going into corporate law? I told her that, yes, I had a law firm job lined up. Another girl immediately began going on about how miserable her friend who currently works at a…

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