Two Texas-based law firms ranked among the top 25 firms listed in the National Law Journal’s Women in Law Scorecard, demonstrating their commitment to the employment of women lawyers.
The scorecard ranks the nation’s largest firms according to percentages of women attorneys and partners.
At Linebarger Goggan, a collections firm where lawyers collect delinquent taxes and other receivables such as traffic tickets for government entities, 36 percent of its 125 lawyers in 2017 were women and 37.2 percent of the partners were women.
At Thompson Coe, 41.2 percent of its 194 lawyers, and 29.5 percent of its partners, were women.
Among the 264 firms that reported information on female lawyers for 2017, women comprised 36 percent of all the 135,060 attorneys. Among the equity partnership ranks, women made up 19 percent of the 31,658 total partners reported. Women comprised a bit more than 46 percent of 63,731 associates reported.
Bridget Moreno Lopez, managing partner of Linebarger Goggan’s Dallas office, said the firm does work for government entities so it strives to have its lawyers and employees reflect the demographics of the communities where they work, including women and minorities.
“Over the years, we’ve learned pretty quickly that people gravitate toward people like them, and so you’ve got to have a diversity of those types of people, whether man, woman or minority,” she said.
Lopez said she’s not the only woman leading an office for Linebarger Goggan. Others are in locations such as Chicago, New York, Denver, El Paso and the Rio Grande Valley. The firm has about 45 offices.
At Thompson Coe, Ellen Van Meir, a partner in Dallas who is a member of the firm’s management committee, said the firm’s women lawyer numbers are high because of the firm’s long history of hiring women associates and because so many women lawyers have stayed at the firm for many years.
“We like to reflect the marketplace. We like to reflect the lawyers that are coming out of law school. We are still interested in hiring straight out of school and that has an impact on the makeup of our firm, and in addition, it’s important to our clients,” Van Meir said.
Last year, Linebarger Goggan was not included in the Women in Law Scorecard, and Thompson Coe was the highest-ranked Texas firm, holding 12th place in the national ranking with 43 percent women lawyers and 30.1 percent women partners.
A total of 15 firms based in Texas are among the 264 firms large firms that reported detailed 2017 head count information about their women lawyers for the NLJ500 survey and are ranked on the Women in Law Scorecard. The score is determined by adding the percentage of women lawyers and the percentage of women partners.
Two other Texas firms are among the top 100 in the ranking. Strasburger & Price, the Dallas firm that merged in April with Detroit firm Clark Hill, was ranked 41st on the scorecard, with women comprising 34 percent of its 188 attorneys and 30.6 percent of its partners in 2017. Thompson & Knight ranked 86th. At the Dallas-based firm, 33.6 percent of its 280 lawyers were women, and 25.2 percent of its partners were women.
The other Texas firms listed among the 264 are, in ranked order, Bracewell; Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld; Winstead; Andrews Kurth Kenyon (now Hunton Andrews Kurth following a merger with Hunton & Williams in April); Haynes and Boone; Baker Botts; Locke Lord; Susman Godfrey; Kelly Hart & Hallman; Chamberlain, Hrdlicka, White, Williams & Aughtry; and Vinson & Elkins.