Notes from the President & CEO
OVERCOMING GENDER BIAS STARTS WITH EACH OF US
MY ALMOST TEENAGE DAUGHTER RECENTLY TOLD ME THAT SHE IS CONSIDERING A CAREER IN THE LAW. She said that she was influenced after watching my closing argument in a jury trial I conducted seven years ago. I was flattered, but I also have mixed feelings about her career choice.
In this month's cover story, "The Pay Gap between Men and Women in the Legal Profession Continues to Widen" we follow a group of lawyers in the study, After the J.D. We are reporting on the third wave of this study that followed 9,000 lawyers who graduated in 2000. The disparity between gender salaries began almost immediately after law school with women making five percent less than their male counterparts in 2002. By the second round of interviews in 2007, the income gap was 13 percent and it grew to 20 percent in 2012.
I challenge any of us to look at our income and slash it by 20 percent. And, it's not just the economic impact on female lawyers - it's the reasons behind it: maternal wall discrimination, our perceptions of good work based on gender and how we reward and promote staff.
MCCA offers excellent resources to help start the conversation and implement a culture change. The Academies for Leadership and Inclusion is a ground breaking, interactive 90-minute program that helps your corporate legal department and law firm learn about diversity and inclusion principles that can be implemented in your organization. This is an exclusive, complimentary member benefit for our in-house members and our Firm Affiliated Network (FAN). The 2013 Do Good, Do Well List showcases law firms that are successful in achieving high levels of excellence in both diversity and business. As more Gen Y lawyers enter the work force, we also must understand their perspectives. Workplace 2020: What Gen Y Attorney Experience & Expect is a study that explores the workplace perceptions of our newest colleagues. All of MCCA’s research is free to our members and our FANs, so please take advantage of it. It can help positively impact your organization.
The legal profession belongs to us. If we want it to change, we have to be the change. Let MCCA help you become the change agent.
Joseph K. West