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Ashley Dawn Rutherford Esq.

Savvy Shopper-At-Law: Sophisticated Casual Friday Ensembles on a Budget

I have to confess. I despise casual/jeans Fridays. Casual Fridays are a recipe for disaster for law students, lawyers, and administrative staff alike. And, Jeans Fridays are even worse. This column is dedicated to mastering casual and/or jeans Friday on a budget.In a recent poll, the blog Corporette asked “Can you Give Unsolicited Advice to Interns?” The central theme throughout most of the responses was “casual” in a business environment is different than “casual” in a social environment. Bottom line: it is important to know your audience. As to whether a more senior employee will tell you whether you are…

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Breaking Chains to Build New Links: For the Public Interest Lawyer

A few months ago, I started a feature to look at how networking and self promotion varies for different areas of the law.  You can see the feature on government lawyering here and the feature on networking for large law firms here.  This month, I’m covering networking and self promotion for the public interest lawyer. I am deeply indebted to Lucy Quacinella, Principal and Founder of Multiform Advocacy Solutions in San Francisco, and Julia Harumi Mass, Staff Attorney at the ACLU of Northern California for their contributions.  Through Multiform Advocacy Solutions, the small law firm she founded after many years in-house…

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Paula Edgar

Esquisite Paths: Rhonda Powell

Rhonda Powell is someone I truly admire.  She is intelligent, savvy and charismatic. She has a formidable sense of confidence that leads you to believe that she can accomplish anything she puts her mind to.   Rhonda’s path has led her to many different positions, including being an assistant buyer at Bloomingdales, an associate at three law firms and in-house attorney at two large corporations. During our conversation, we discussed, among other things,  having patience during times of adversity and her current position, which combines her love of food and her legal/business skills.  I was inspired by Rhonda’s Esquisite Path and…

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Me and the Boys

Forget the Linen Closet:  Reflections on My First Week as a Lawyer in a Law Firm

In preparation for my first day, I bought a new blouse and ironed my favorite suit.  Knowing that I was professionally dressed and looked nice was a little confidence booster that helped me put aside those first-day jitters. After paperwork and a short orientation with the office manager, I was taken to my new office, where a desk, a laptop computer, empty bookshelves and bare walls were waiting for my arrival.  Once my e-mail was all set up, I went ahead and sent the Boss an e-mail to let him know I was ready to work.  The first day assignments…

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Small Firm Life: Managing Up

When I read workplace success books and articles or receive career advice from mentors everyone always reminds me of the importance of “managing up.” The concept of managing up is to try and work with your boss to obtain the best results for both your boss and the company.  Rather than kissing up to your boss or trying to change him/her, the idea is to try and understand your boss and use these tools to your advantage.  I think it is a great concept on principle but I have always found it difficult to put into practice.  My boss is…

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Vado Porro

Running from the Law: Staying Sane Through Bar Study

This morning, I woke up in my usual (as of late) fit of bar exam anxiety around 4:30.  I tossed, I turned, I whimpered about how much my life sucks right now (my fiance thought the whimpering was “excessive”), and I tried to go back to sleep.  Around 5am, I decided that if I wasn’t going to be asleep and I couldn’t bear the thought of another practice question, I would go to the gym to hit the 5:40am spin class that I used to attend with somewhat regularity, before I started a night bar review and not sleeping.  As…

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Mikki Collier

Couture At Law: From Work Hours to After Hours

The rising temperature is not the only thing that is sizzling hot right now! If you're like me, the increased mercury also means an increase in the events penciled in your social calendar. Since the arrival of the summer solstice, I've attended at least 2 after work events a week, with more scheduled to come! While it's exciting to have a fun-filled life beyond the strictures of the office clock, it DOES leave you with the dilemma of what to wear. How do you go from the office to an evening out without keeping a whole different wardrobe under your desk…

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Frank Kimball

Reflections From A Headhunter and Hiring Partner: Why You Must Know a Little About Football

Editor's Note: As part of Ms. JD's 5th Birthday celebration, we'll be looking back at our favorite posts over the years.One of the best sessions at the Ms JD Third Annual Conference on Women in the Law last November was “Bring on the Rain,” moderated by Deborah Knupp, the inspiring and managing partner of Akina. Other panelists included the remarkable Kelly Hoey, the President of 85 Broads (if you’re not a member, you should be). A law student asked “Why do women lawyers have to learn about football?” She described meeting senior male lawyers and how the conversation inevitably turned…

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Breaking Chains to Build New Links - Law Firm Networking

Last month I started a series to look at how networking varies, if it does at all, for different types of lawyers. In the first piece, I covered networking for government lawyers. This month, as many law students start their summer positions in an improving but still scary economy, I thought it would be a good time to cover law firm networking. Law firm networking means two things to me: (1) internal “networking” and (2) business development. Internal networking is the networking that is most important for summer associates now; it means taking the time to get to know the…

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Jennifer Guenther

From the Desk of a Working Mom: Alpha Moms

There is a new definition of moms on the streets, one whose tag line infers a hyper-aggressive, stop-at-nothing, bring-home-the-bacon-fry-it-up-in-a-pan-with-a-smile type of mom. According to a recent article, these new moms are defined as the “busy mom who seems to juggle it all.  Effortlessly.  She’s up on the latest trends from high fashion to high tech, and if you’re searching for the best stroller, she’s been there and done that.”  These moms are “hungry for information” and “not shy about letting their friends know they had a disappointing dinner at a local restaurant.”  They have fulfilling careers and “get it…

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