Women's Leadership Initiative

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Kirkland is passionate about supporting its women attorneys by building and maintaining a culture of equality that values and gathers strength from difference.  Our Women's Leadership Initiative (WLI) provides formal training, mentoring and networking opportunities for our women attorneys to ensure their personal and professional success at the Firm.  

The WLI hosts, sponsors or participates in a Firmwide suite of efforts that support the development of women in the legal field. Monthly discussion lunches on a variety of topics, informal mentoring and networking opportunities, evening receptions and participation in local community events are all designed to promote the training and advancement of our women attorneys.

The WLI has also instituted a formal mentoring program called "Mentoring Circles." The program is centered around "Circles," or small groups of female senior partners, mid-level associates and junior associates that span practice groups. Each group is headed by a female partner, and female associates are assigned to a Circle during the Summer Program. The Mentoring Circles allow women at various stages in their careers to mentor each other and form relationships with their female colleagues where there might otherwise not be such an opportunity.

In addition, the Kirkland Leadership Forum for Women is a biennial program that brings together Kirkland attorneys, their senior female clients and dynamic business professors and management coaches to hone leadership skills, network and share insights. Boris Groysberg, professor in the organizational behavior unit at Harvard Business School, led the 2008 and 2010 programs in the Firm's New York and Washington, D.C., offices, respectively. The 2012 program was held on October 11, 2012, in Kirkland's New York office and was led by Assistant Professor Amy Cuddy from Harvard Business School and Associate Professor Cameron Anderson from the University of California, Berkeley Haas School of Business. More than 30 senior female clients and 30 Kirkland female partners attended the 2012 forum.

"Through our WLI workshops and programs we provide focused and useful
strategies and tips to help our women attorneys navigate the unique challenges
and opportunities for women practicing law."

Elizabeth Deeley, San Francisco Litigation Partner

© 2014 Kirkland & Ellis LLP