Women in the legal field know the value of mentorships and networking. A disproportionally small number of general counsel in Fortune 500 companies are women, and women in the profession have a tendency to share the power, as female inside counsel give business to female outside counsel.
Another way that women GCs can promote their female colleagues is to hire them for deputy positions in their legal departments. Such is the philosophy of Ana Salas Siegel, SVP & deputy general counsel for Fox International Latin America. Siegel and her all-female team were recently profiled by dailybusinessreview.com, and the team represents something of an anomaly in the legal world.
Siegel has four attorneys in her Coral Gables office, all of whom are female. This aligns with Siegel’s philosophy of empowering women. “Certainly if there was a more qualified male, I would hire him. But definitely among two equally qualified lawyers, I would pick the woman,” she told the Daily Business Review. “I’m certainly trying to do my part to promote women. I know the trending isn’t as positive as I’d like it to be in the legal industry. I’m trying to build the next generation of female lawyers.”
In addition to the all-female staff in Florida, Siegel oversees 24 attorneys and 35 staffers in Latin American and Atlanta. Only four of these employees are male.
The Fox staff is well known in the state of Florida for its female staff, and it elicits mixed reactions. Some of the attorneys have experienced disbelief or skepticism about the unit, but the members of the team are proud of their collegiality and work ethic. In addition, the group has received praise from the Florida Association of Female Lawyers.
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