Lewis Brisbois Featured by Attorney at Law Magazine In Article On Gender Equality in Law Firms

Minneapolis, Minn. (November 16, 2020) – Lewis Brisbois was recently featured in the 2020 Women in Law issue of Attorney at Law Magazine in an article titled “Lewis Brisbois: Gender Blind.” In profiling several female attorneys in its Minneapolis office, the article discusses the equitable manner in which Lewis Brisbois recruits, retains, and promotes women.  

As the article describes, although half of all law school graduates are female, women generally occupy fewer leadership positions and earn less than their male counterparts in the legal profession. Referring to Lewis Brisbois as “an antidote to this problem,” the article explains that the firm “has repeatedly received recognition for its equitable recruitment, retention and promotion policies.”

Noting that Lewis Brisbois opened its 52nd location in Minneapolis in September 2019, the article describes that Minneapolis Managing Partner Michelle Gilboe “has steadily recruited a roster of accomplished attorneys, with an eye to building an office that is as diverse as the Twin Cities community it serves.” Ms. Gilboe told Attorney at Law Magazine that she feels supported in her role, explaining, “I feel comfortable in my skin. And part of the reason I do is that the firm allows me to, and our office supports me. I have a group around me that helps fortify me.”

In discussing the experiences of several female attorneys in Lewis Brisbois’ Minneapolis office, the article points out that these individuals each praise the firm’s approach to gender equality. For example, Minneapolis Partner Kari Berman, a member of Lewis Brisbois’ Complex Business & Commercial Litigation Practice, expressed satisfaction with witnessing her female colleagues’ success, noting, “This firm has a track record of having women in leadership throughout the firm who mean business and are treated with seriousness and respect. In my first months here, I have seen repeatedly how Michelle [Gilboe] has been supported and treated by the firm in a way that is not just lip service.”

In addition, Minneapolis Partner Carli Pearson, a member of Lewis Brisbois’ Products Liability Practice, explained that the lawyers in the office “continue to share a common focus: doing great legal work for our amazing clients in an environment that is supportive for everyone, period.” 

Minneapolis Partner Tina Syring, a member of Lewis Brisbois’ Labor & Employment and Complex Business & Commercial Litigation Practices, also echoed her colleagues’ sentiments and described her belief that Lewis Brisbois’ leadership can help shift the tide for female attorneys. She explained, “I know that with Lewis Brisbois, and with the leadership and support of men like Rick Morgan and Steve Lewis, there will be a change in the profession.” She added, “This has been the best career move I’ve ever made and the last I’ll ever make. I’m so happy to be at a firm where I know that I have not just a seat at the table, but a voice at the table.” 

As the article notes, Lewis Brisbois’ female attorneys do not seek to diminish the contributions of their male colleagues, but instead simply “feel a responsibility to assist other women with conflicts and challenges unique to their gender” within the workplace. 

On the topic of influencing the manner in which associates view gender, Ms. Gilboe noted, “It is just as important as we invest in the next generation of lawyers for our male associates to see and experience strong, smart women in leadership as it is to the female associates. Our male associates think nothing of an office where it doesn’t matter what gender you are. And that is good for the future of the practice.” Indeed, in reflecting upon what prompted her to join Lewis Brisbois, Minneapolis Associate Alexa Ely, a member of Lewis Brisbois’ Products Liability Practice, told Attorney at Law Magazine that “a big draw was seeing sizable representation of women at the partner level and in leadership roles at our office.” Ms. Ely recently joined the Minneapolis office, as did Associate Amanda McAllister, who is a member of Lewis Brisbois’ Data Privacy & Cybersecurity Practice.

As the article states in its closing, “A note to all those who may not yet have heard the news: the world is changing. At Lewis Brisbois, the future is already here. And it’s gender blind.”

You can read the full article on Attorney at Law Magazine's website here. A digital version of the full magazine issue is available here.

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