A few months ago, one of my daughters, my sister and I traveled to South Africa. Our guides were determined that we see the "big five"-lion, elephant, rhinoceros, water buffalo and leopard-which is the goal of every safari. The "big five" are very respected by locals, and thus appropriately named, as they are the five animals that under the right circumstances, could prevail in an encounter with a human being.
While one guide drove, the other studied the ground for footprints to see whether one of the "big five" was in the vicinity. From the depth and clarity of the footprints, the guides could discern the type of the animal, whether it was in pursuit of another animal, and its strength. That safari has made me evaluate the contour and depth of NAWL's "impact footprint".
I am incredibly grateful and humbled when I see daily demonstrations of member engagement, which will eventually lead to fulfillment of our mission of gender equality. From my vantage point, our distinct footprint evidences our efforts as the national women's bar association, as well as our membership in the alliance of national affinity bars. I recognize that without member support, NAWL's "impact footprint" would be very shallow. Additionally, without membership engagement and leadership, hundreds of opportunities for the personal growth of our members, which are generated by NAWL activities, would vanish without leaving a mark.
I guarantee that membership on any of NAWL's committees will foster the wonderful sense that you are working with like-minded people in a constructive fashion to forge your efforts and energy into a lever to transform the prospects of women in the legal profession. One of the most personally and professionally valuable manifestations of your personal return on your investment in NAWL will be the relationships that will be developed based on shared convictions. Participation on NAWL committees will also add to your project management, strategic thinking, and leadership core strengths.
There are a wide range of NAWL committees. The strategic function of these committees range from:
Advocating (on our own behalf and with other organizations) for the fulfillment of our specialized mission of obtaining gender equality in the legal profession and for all women;
Advancing thought leadership on issues related to women in the law, including our robust programming and scholarship;
Aligning the perspectives and power of women lawyers of all races, ethnicities, and sexual orientations; and
Assisting NAWL to build strong infrastructure in terms of membership, sponsorship and member engagement.
Thanks to those members whose efforts, in the form of their engagement, has helped NAWL cut a powerful footprint. We welcome the engagement of all members, so that NAWL's impact will continue to lead the way forward to gender equality.