It was a historic day for White & Case when the firm announced the promotion of its first female partner in the 26-year history of the Miami office.
Angela Daker, 40, worked her way up the White & Case ladder, starting as a Miami associate in 2002 and being named of counsel in 2010. The firm has 24 partners and a total of 90 lawyers in Miami.
“I’m thrilled beyond belief,” Daker said. “I’ve been here for 11 years and have been working toward this as a goal and was happy to see it in writing on Friday. I celebrated all weekend.”
The Daily Business Review featured White & Case in a January article on gender disparity in South Florida law firms. White & Case was known for not promoting a woman to partner before.
Daker, a member of the Florida Association for Women Lawyers, said she is proud of the distinction and happy to be a role model to female associates. She is active in White & Case’s women’s initiative, which is dedicated to developing and advancing talented women.
“I’ve been here 11 years, and as a woman I’ve always felt throughout that time supported by partners and associates,” she said. “I still feel that way. Most senior lawyers, male and female, try to mentor junior lawyers, and I certainly do that with female and male lawyers and plan to continue doing that.”
Sherill Colombo, president of the Miami FAWL chapter, said she was pleased White & Case finally promoted a woman to partner in Miami.
“Based on their statistics, I’d say it’s about time,” she said, offering her congratulations to the firm. “Hopefully, they will continue to recognize women in the profession and the value of having women partners.”
Nicole Erb, chair of White & Case’s women’s initiative, said she was pleased with the promotion.
“The women’s initiative is working towards the development and retention of women associates so they can succeed at White & Case,” she said. “One of the key issues in corporate America is retention, so we are very pleased to have someone of Angela’s caliber to be recognized for all she can do. She has a great sponsor and support in Miami. We’re very pleased from the women’s initiative perspective that she was promoted.”
Linda Leali, who worked as an associate in Miami for White & Case for 12 years before leaving to start her own law firm last year, also commended the firm.
“I am thrilled to hear that Angela was promoted to partner,” she said. “She’s a skilled and intelligent lawyer, and her clients love her. This is definitely a welcome step. I’m glad they recognized one of their skilled female partners.”
Daker works in the firm’s global commercial litigation practice and advises clients on commercial litigation, class actions, white collar litigation and SEC enforcement actions. The Northwestern University School of Law previously worked as an associate clinical professor at Northwestern running a Chicago juvenile justice clinic.
Daker was one of 18 lawyers promoted to partner worldwide on Friday, six of them women. Two other lawyers in Miami — banking attorney Eric Klar and corporate attorney Victor Mendoza III — also were named partner.
Based in New York, White & Case has 1,900 lawyers and 40 offices.