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Academy for the Advancement of Women in Law

RISE: Resilient, Inspired, Strategic, Empowered

Fall 2023 TBA

The Program

Join us for a series of conversations in which female and male attorneys will share ideas and best practices for creating more inclusive environments that enable the advancement of women lawyers globally.

2022 Schedule

October 7: Opening and Discussion
This panel will discuss the current state of affairs of women in the legal profession. It will consider the special ways in which women of color are further marginalized and offer tips for how white women can better support our colleagues of color.

  • Welcome—Cecilia Caldeira (Fordham Law School)
  • Opening Remarks:
    • Matthew Diller (Fordham Law School)
    • Costanza Vergara (Perez-Llorca)
  • Presentation—Setting the Stage: A Discussion With the Authors of the American Bar Association Report "Walking Out the Door"
    • Paulette Brown (Former President, American Bar Association)
    • Roberta D. Liebenberg (Fine, Kaplan & Black)
    • Stephanie A. Scharf (Scharf Banks Marmor; The Red Bee Group, LLC)

October 14: Law Firm Leader Dialogue
This panel will feature an open conversation between a female and a male managing partner of leading global law firms. They will discuss strategies for advancing women in their firms and the profession more broadly. The panel will explore whether female and male leaders view this issue and their roles in promoting underrepresented groups differently and how we can achieve better alignment and outcomes. The panel will additionally discuss whether men and women develop business in different ways; how any such difference impact advancement of women; and how firms and individuals can provide women and lawyers from other underrepresented groups the skills to develop business.

  • Rafique Bachour (Freshfields)
  • Mary G. Wilson (Dentons)
  • Moderator: Deborah B. Farone (Farone Advisors)

October 21: Advancing Women in the Profession: Mentors, Role Models, and Sponsors
This panel will discuss the role of mentors, role models, and sponsors in advancing women in the profession. It discusses the important ways in which women can support each other, men can support women, and women can leverage their male colleagues’ influence in law firms and other organizations. The panel will discuss specific steps and tips for improving mentor, role model, and sponsor relationships to maximize their impact.

  • Gillian Burns (Cadwalader)
  • Palmina Fava (Vinson & Elkins)
  • W. Brad Johnson (United States Naval Academy/Johns Hopkins University)
  • Hon. Tanya R. Kennedy (New York Supreme Court, Appellate Division)
  • Lisa Worcman (Mattos Filho)
  • Jennifer Wu (Paul, Weiss)
  • Moderator: Lucy Onyeforo (Faegre Drinker)

October 28: Wellbeing and Sustainability for Women in the Profession
This panel will examine ways in which law firms and other organizations can align their practices around wellbeing with their client service and other organizational values. It also will discuss ways in which we as individuals can support our own wellbeing and that of our colleagues and team members. We will additional discuss how to balance our wellbeing with our ethical obligations.

  • Heidi S. Alexander (Massachusetts SJC Standing Committee on Lawyer Well-Being)
  • Lori L. Pines (Weil)
  • Jennifer M. Rosa (Mayer Brown)
  • Moderator: Jordana Alter Confino (Fordham Law School)

November 4: Looking Ahead: Changing the Law Firm Paradigm for Women in the Law
This session will address best practices for a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplace. Law firm leaders and scholars will discuss actionable strategies for expanding women’s leadership roles in law firms and other organizations. It will also discuss ways in which women can promote themselves in a way that is authentic and effective.

  • Landis C. Best (Cahill Gordon & Reindel LLP)
  • Ayala Deutsch (NBA Properties)
  • Peter Furci (Debevoise & Plimton)
  • Lisa Kaplowitz (Rutgers Center for Women in Business)
  • Lisa Koenig (Fragomen)
  • David G. Smith (Johns Hopkins University)
  • Moderator: Cheryl Howard (Crowell & Moring LLP)

November 11: Closing Keynote Address
The closing keynote, delivered by one of the top female corporate legal officers in the world and an ardent promoter of women in the legal profession, will explore ways in which each of us can better position ourselves and our female colleagues for leadership roles, while balancing family obligations and our wellbeing.

  • Barbara Levi (UBS)
  • Moderator: Toni Jaeger-Fine (Fordham Law School)

Who Should Attend

This program is open to lawyers and affiliated staff at all levels, regardless of gender.

Program Schedule

Download 2022 printable schedule

CLE Credit

Continuing legal education credit for the program has been approved in accordance with the requirements of the New York State and New Jersey State CLE Boards for a maximum of 5 credits in the following areas (subject to change):

New York (nontransitional, for experienced attorneys):

  • .5 Professional Practice credits
  • 3.5 Diversity, Inclusion, and Elimination of Bias credits
  • .5 Ethics credits
  • .5 Skills credits

New Jersey:

  • 4.5 Professional Practice credits
  • .5 Ethics credits

Attendees seeking credit in another jurisdiction will have to apply to their jurisdiction's CLE Board for credit.


Register and pay now


Please pay with Visa, Mastercard, or Discover. The payment system does not accept American Express. If you require assistance, please contact us.

$750 full payment


$500 per participant if 5 or more registrants from the same firm/company (please indiciate your affilation in the notes column when paying)


$500 per participant if graduate of Fordham Law School (please indicate your year of graduation and program in the notes column when paying)



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In Collaboration with

Program Co-Sponsored by

Additional co-sponsors to be announced.