Casey Sullivan writes, "Meet Linda Kornfeld. She’s an insurance recovery partner at Kasowitz Benson Torres & Friedman and, despite having worked at three different law firms over the past six years, one thing has remained consistent: a referral network she established in 2009 with six other women at competitor firms.
Call it a law firm among law firms.
Dancing Queens, as the women have called the group, meets twice a year at the Michigan household of Andrea Kramer, who is a partner and former management committee member at McDermott Will & Emery. There, they discuss law firm and corporate politics and marketing ideas, as well as confide in each other about personal matters like breakups, weddings and parents deaths.
'We just said, ‘There are so many women spending so much energy trying to talk with the in-house counsel,' said Kornfeld, 'We should instead focus on each other, develop a network and do what the guys do — women don’t do such a great job of that.'
Despite years of talk about gender parity, women remain underrepresented in Big Law partnerships. A 2015 report by the National Association for Law Placement said that women make up 17 percent of equity partners at large law firms. As we previously reported, though, some women leaders in Big Law are finding new ways to network, as illustrated by a group of female law firm chairs who meet regularly for dinner.
In the eat-what-you-kill environment in which lawyers operate, the small group is combining forces to help each other succeed. Aside from exchanging industry information, the group members also refers business to one another, and each of the members brings her own specialty and geographic center, making up somewhat of a small, full-service group."