'Best' law firms for women? Really?

    By: Clair Fuller on Oct 10, 2017

    Vivia Chen writes, "How marvelous. A fresh batch of "best" law firms for women lists. They are proliferating like bunnies across the American legal landscape. Law360, Working Mother and our own National Law Journalare just some of the publications that recently put out such lists. (Yale Law Women issues one too; it's called "Top 10 Family-Friendly Firms"—a much more P.C. moniker.)

    I'd love to say that these lists signal an abundance of opportunities for women in law. But that's not how I see them. I find these lists confusing, if not misleading. And sad.

    Often, firms get the "best" designation because they boast a high percentage of women lawyers—even though not many of them are actual shareholders. 

    The result is that firms with below-average percentage of women equity partners can get a skewed ranking, as I see it. For example, Baker McKenzie (16.4 percent female equity partners; the national average hovers around 18 percent) ranks No. 24 on the NLJ's list, while Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison (23.3 female equity partners) only ranks No. 38. Using a similar formula, Law360 puts Baker McKenzie in second place on its best women's list in the 600-plus law firm category, tying with Jackson Lewis.

    To me the proof in the equality pudding is how many women are elevated to equity partner. If women aren't equal stakeholders with men, how can anyone say they have any genuine power?"

    READ MORE>>

    Released: October 10, 2017, 9:04 am
    Keywords: NAWL News


    National Association of Women Lawyers®

    American Bar Center MS 19.1, 321 North Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60654 T: 312.988.6186 F: 312.932.6450 nawl@nawl.org