NEW YORK - – The American Lawyer’s first issue of 2011 celebrates the success of 45 women lawyers under 45 who have broken into the partnership ranks at AmLaw 200 firms and have already built stellar reputations in their practice areas.
“Time and again we come across remarkable women lawyers, who fall outside our deals-and-suits coverage. To give them their due we decided to bring some of them together in a single issue,” says Robin Sparkman, editor-in-chief of The American Lawyer. “They may not be household names yet but this is not a watch list of future stars - these women have arrived and are thriving.”
“45 Under 45,” introduces this latest segment of top young lawyers. The final list is packed with the women who are leading billion-dollar deals, managing high-stakes litigation and developing successful original practices. Nominations were whittled down to 45 finalists after interviewing the nominees, their clients and opposing counsel.
Reporter Amy Kolz takes a look at the high performing women in the ranks of M&A and PE lawyers in “Let’s Make a Deal”. In the table pounding and testosterone charged world of M&A, successful female lawyers are a rarity. Unpredictable hours, the train wreck of a work/life balance, and the networking hurdles in male dominated boardrooms all make this a particularly hostile environment for women lawyers.
The successful few have adopted a variety of strategies to make it, from developing a reputation for good listening skills and lack of ego, to building client lists early in their careers and networking with other successful women.
“Patently Successful,” by Irene Plagianos, examines the reasons that intellectual property law seems to be an area in which women can excel. A spike in the numbers of women with technology and science degrees and the increased concentration on IP in law schools have combined to boost the numbers of women in the field.
“If you can understand the technology or science, and break it down for a jury, no one cares if you’re a man or a woman,” according to Ann Cathcart Chaplin of Fish & Richardson.
The American Lawyer
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