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Bar Association of San Francisco Member Benefits: Publications

No Glass Ceiling Conference Teaches Mid-Level Attorneys How to Take Careers to the Next Level


By Marcie Areias, Career Advisor, Golden Gate University School of Law


The No Glass Ceiling Task Force of The Bar Association of San Francisco hosted the third in a series of conferences in its Pathways to Power series on November 10. This conference focused on the economic success of fourth-through-eighth-year female associates and addressed everything from becoming indispensable at work to drafting personal career plans. Not only was this conference full of dynamic and influential speakers, attorneys walked away with practical and concrete “to do” lists. Nothing was off the table for discussion and real life choices were flushed out and put into perspective.

The conference brought in accomplished speakers with motivating messages. Nancy Geenen, a partner at Foley & Lardner, kicked off the first presentation on networking. Nancy stressed that most people don’t like networking but your job is to convince people you do and to always network with a purpose. Ida Abbott, principal at Ida Abbott Consulting, followed with a frank discussion on transitioning into a leadership role where the name of the game is self-advocacy. The biggest topic on everyone’s mind was developing a personal career plan. Pat Gillette, a partner at Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe and Erin McLeod, Senior Corporate Counsel at Wind River, made it clear that the time to develop your plan is now. They explained that drafting a five-year personal career plan with measurable and flexible goals will keep you progressing and on top of your career.

Overall, the conference offered a great forum for mid-level associates to gather valuable information and direction on the next steps in their career. Participants left motivated and excited about their future.


Marcie Areias is a career advisor at Golden Gate University School of Law where she writes, presents and advises on professional development topics. Prior to joining Golden Gate, Marcie was a corporate attorney for Gibson Dunn.

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