In honor of International Women’s Day on March 8, we highlight the following trailblazers from our Spring 2019 San Francisco Attorney magazine, out now:
Growing up, San Francisco native Justice Therese Stewart never imagined she would one day lead the city in its legal battles for marriage equality. Nor did she know that in 1999, she would serve as the first openly gay president of the Bar Association of San Francisco (BASF). Stewart, who sits on California’s First District Court of Appeal, graduated from UC Berkeley School of Law in 1981. When she enrolled, Stewart wanted to be an environmental lawyer. Read more.
In 2002-2003, Harris served on the board of directors of the Bar Association of San Francisco and became involved in the No Glass Ceiling Initiative, aimed at increasing the representation of female attorneys and partners in Bay Area law firms. With a renewed focus on the initiative underway, we checked in with Senator Harris, to get her perspective on women in leadership positions today and what remains to be done on the path to equality and inclusion. Read more.
The American Bar Association’s highest award for women in the profession—the Margaret Brent Women Lawyers of Achievement Award—this year goes to a San Francisco attorney who has long been blazing a trail for women both in and out of the courtroom. Kelly M. Dermody, Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, will accept the 2019 award in August during the ABA’s annual meeting in San Francisco. The former president of the Bar Association of San Francisco (BASF) joins a group that includes twenty women from the Bay Area who have won the award since its inception. With Dermody, recipients include four past BASF presidents and two former executive directors. Read more.
Deborah Daniloff’s face lights up when she talks about one of the pro bono family law cases she worked on last year, helping to reunite a young man with his child. If not for the legal help, the man might have been too intimidated to seek a visitation order from the court. “That felt really good to help him get there,” said Daniloff, who works at Bank of America as assistant general counsel and director – global transaction services. Read more.
Our blueprint for 2019 will focus on our courts, advocacy skills to protect people’s rights, and, at the helm of this—women trial lawyers. In our 2019 blueprint, BASF and JDC will launch the Woman In Trial Initiative. The program is not strictly limited to women. I know that you will all want to participate. We will build upon the public service programs begun over a hundred years ago and the women initiatives that are the pioneering hallmark of this organization. Our pro bono programs need smart, energetic, and skilled advocates to assist with cases related to family law, child custody, spousal support, eviction defense, debt collection, prisoner rights, and other matters. Read more.
On November 29 of last year, Bar Association of San Francisco members gathered to launch the revitalized Women’s Impact Network (WIN) with the “No Glass Ceiling 2.0” conference. It was an historic occasion. Standing on the foundation built by their predecessors, the current generation’s leaders shared their calls to action and commitment to continuing efforts to achieve gender equality in the legal profession. Read more.