Whether it’s “Dealmakers of the Year,” “Litigation Department of the Year,” “Big Suits,” or “Big Deals,” the pages of The American Lawyer typically brim with pictures of men. But time and again, we’ve come across remarkable women lawyers, many of whom fell outside of our deals-and-suits-heavy coverage. To give them their due, we decided to identify the best of the best among young women lawyers in The Am Law 200, and bring them together in a single issue.
We called various industry sources and also invited The Am Law 200 to submit a maximum of five nominations per firm. All told, we had more than ten nominees for each spot on our “45 Under 45″ list, so our team of reporters and editors could afford to be picky. In the end, we passed over the many ink-worthy “rising stars” in favor of a few dozen women who–despite their youth–have already arrived. Some are well-known, others less so. But all have achievements we could quantify: They are leading billion-dollar deals or financings, first-chairing high-stakes litigation, arguing appeals, or managing important firm clients. We also looked for those with an upward trajectory at their firms, whether taking on progressively larger roles, heading important firm initiatives, or bringing in significant new business. We also recognized a few women who have built successful original practices, like privacy law or clean tech, or have taken their practices to new places, whether that be public international law or the Middle East. One thing we didn’t take into account: A lot of these lawyers are juggling careers with raising young children.
After the initial vetting, we got on the phones. Every finalist was screened by an American Lawyer reporter, who reviewed her record and called clients and opposing counsel. Then we tried to distill it all into approximately 125 words per profile. It was a big job, but these women are worth the recognition. Read on.
Reported by: Susan Beck, Drew Combs, Michael D. Goldhaber, Chris Johnson, Dimitra Kessenides, Amy Kolz, D.M. Levine, Victor Li, Anthony Lin, Irene Plagianos, Ross Todd, Julie Triedman, and Claire Zillman.
Let’s Make a Deal
A new generation of women are breaking through the testosterone-filled ranks of M&A and PE lawyers.
By Amy Kolz
In the relatively new field of IP litigation, a handful of women have made strides.
By Irene Plagianos
Not So Fast . . .
Our “45 Under 45” package trumpets women lawyers’ accomplishments,but sadly these ladies are outliers.
By Vivia Chen
45 UNDER 45 PROFILES
Carolyn Alford, 43, King & Spalding, Atlanta
Lorie Almon, 41, Seyfarth Shaw, New York
Elena Baca, 43, Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker, Los Angeles
Yas Banifatemi, 43, Shearman & Sterling, Paris
Kerry Berchem, 44, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld, New York
Frances Bivens, 44, Davis Polk & Wardwell, New York
April Miller Boise, 42, Thompson Hine, Cleveland
Leah Brannon, 35, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton, Washington, D.C.
Amy Caton, 39, Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel, New York
Ann Cathcart Chaplin, 37, Fish & Richardson, Minneapolis
Julian Chung, 44, Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft, New York
Rachel Clingman, 43, Sutherland Asbill & Brennan, Houston
Linda Coberly, 43, Winston & Strawn, Chicago
Audra Cohen, 43, Sullivan & Cromwell, New York
Aimee Cummo, 38, SNR Denton, New York
Cari Dawson, 43, Alston & Bird, Atlanta
Amy Dulin, 44, Hughes Hubbard & Reed, Miami
Kelly Dybala, 37, Weil, Gotshal & Manges, Dallas
Erin Egan, 41, Covington & Burling, Washington, D.C.
Alice Fisher, 43, Latham & Watkins, Washington, D.C.
Sharon Flanagan, 39, Sidley Austin, San Francisco
Gaela Gehring Flores, 39, Arnold & Porter, Washington, D.C.
Z. Julie Gao, 40, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, Hong Kong
Jennifer Hobbs, 43, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett, New York
Julie Jones, 41, Ropes & Gray, Boston
Heidi Keefe, 40, Cooley, Palo Alto
Lori Lesser, 44, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett, New York
Heidi Levine, 40, DLA Piper, New York
Susan Mac Cormac, 44, Morrison & Foerster, San Francisco
Victoria Maroulis, 39, Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, Redwood Shores, California
Cathy Marsh, 43, Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy, London
Mika Mayer, 33, Morrison & Foerster, Palo Alto
Catherine McCarthy, 43, Dewey & LeBoeuf, Washington, D.C.
Elizabeth Moeller, 40, Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman, Washington, D.C.
Lynn Neuner, 43, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett, New York
Kimberly Parker, 40, Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr, Washington, D.C.
Laura Lee Prather, 43, Sedgwick, Detert, Moran & Arnold, Austin
Allison Schneirov, 44, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, New York
Rebecca Silberstein, 42, Debevoise & Plimpton, New York
Rachelle Silverberg, 43, Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz, New York
Catherine Stetson, 41, Hogan Lovells, Washington, D.C.
Kim Taylor, 43, Kirkland & Ellis, New York
Helgi Walker, 44, Wiley Rein, Washington, D.C.
Jamie Wine, 40, Latham & Watkins, New York
Ayse Yüksel, 41, Chadbourne & Parke, Dubai