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Women in the Legal Profession: You’ve Come a Long Way-Or Have You?

Margaret A. Costello

Women obviously have come a long way and have made their mark on the legal profession, right? Of course. ... In most graduating law school classes of the past five years, the top fifteen percent contains a female majority. ... Even more disturbing, however, is the complacency displayed by many women, particularly younger women, who are entering the legal profession. ... They do not have to face what Michigan Supreme Court Justice Patricia Boyle confronted upon graduation from law school-first in her class; last to find employment. ... Women entering the legal profession see and hear of the success stories of women such as U.S. Supreme Court Justices Sandra Day O'Connor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg; Michigan Supreme Court Justices Dorothy Comstock Riley, Patricia Boyle, Elizabeth Weaver and Marilyn Kelly; and former State Bar of Michigan President Victoria Roberts. ... This is not meant to imply that men in the legal profession are uniformly content and experiencing a high level of satisfaction in their jobs. ... Both men and women, including those just entering the legal profession, must recognize the ongoing problems and struggles related to gender bias and must develop and implement successful strategies for dealing with the barriers that are present or sure to arise.
  • Print Location 1997 Det. C.L. Rev. 909

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