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Gender Bias Among Lawyers -- Part III

If airing a subject in public helps bring about reform, then this has been a good week for the status of women in the legal profession. But then reality offers a firm slap in the face and you realize how far we still have to go.

The conversation kicked off Sunday with a New York Times article on why so few women reach the top of large law firms. On Monday, I wrote about bloggers' reactions to the piece, as did Carolyn Elefant on Tuesday. Yesterday, the Coast to Coast podcast that I co-host with blogger J. Craig Williams featured a discussion of the gender gap in the legal profession.

But then, just as the conversation seems to be going along nicely, Law Blog points us to this USA Today article, "Should Business Execs Meet at Strip Clubs?" As the article sets out, the question pertains not only to business execs, but to lawyers:

"Attorney Rohit Sabharwal, a Rick's regular, says he often takes clients of his small law firm with him and such entertaining was common when he was at a large firm, too. "Nobody really objects," Sabharwal says. "I think it's a lot more civilized in the law profession. I don't think women have a problem succeeding in law firms."

One step forward, two steps back. But there is more positive news. The Massachusetts firm Bowditch & Dewey announced this week the formation of the Bowditch Institute for Women’s Success, a subsidiary that will provide seminars, consulting, speaking and coaching services designed to support the advancement of women in law firms and professional services organizations. Directing it will be partner Lauren Stiller Rikleen, author of the new book, "Ending the Gauntlet: Removing Barriers to Women’s Success in the Law," published by Thomson/LegalWorks.

Posted by Robert J. Ambrogi on March 24, 2006 at 10:21 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)


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