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NAWL Announces New Executive Director

To NAWL members, sponsors, partners, and friends:

It is with great pleasure that I announce Karen Richardson as the new Executive Director of the National Association of Women Lawyers.

Karen joins NAWL from Freeborn & Peters LLP where she served as a business development coach[KR1] , working closely with individual attorneys and firm leadership to systematically expand the firm's brand to support business development.[MK(2]  From her work at Freeborn, Karen brings creativity, strategic vision, and a structured approach to organizational growth.

Karen will be a familiar name and face to many of you. She previously served as NAWL's Program Director from 2013 to 2018, during which time she worked with NAWL's talented volunteers to plan and execute all programming, which incorporated continuing legal education, networking opportunities, charitable partnerships, and leadership development for thousands of diverse members nationwide. Karen has a strong commitment to social justice, receiving her J.D. and B.A. from Loyola University Chicago[KR3] .

Karen has a passion for NAWL's mission and will continue and expand on our 120-year legacy, leading our continued efforts to advance diversity and inclusion in the profession and expanding our advocacy in the areas of judicial representation and gender rights[MK(4] . She also brings deep institutional knowledge and close relationships with our members, sponsors, and partnering organizations.

Many thanks to NAWL's search committee and CohenTaylor Executive Search Services for their work on the national search that helped identify Karen as our new executive leader.

As we approach the 100th anniversary of women's suffrage in the United States, NAWL has never been better positioned to increase its impact on furthering equality in the legal profession and ensuring equality for women under the law. We are excited to have Karen as our new Executive Director and we look forward to your continued support and partnership as we welcome her in her new role. Karen can be reached at or 312.988.6196.



Sarretta McDonough
NAWL President


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