The tie between lawyers and journalists is pretty close for Lynn Oberlander, the new GC at The New Yorker. “We’re both trading in words,” she says, “[and] reporting a story and getting into a case are very similar.”

Oberlander, 41, was an editor and columnist at the Yale Daily News in college. But the budding newswoman wasn’t so sure of her own writerly grace: “I thought I’d be relegated to covering school boards.” So she took her family’s advice: “Go to law school.”