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Hear from the women of Chartwell Law: What changes for women would you like to see in the future of the legal industry?

Chartwell Law attorneys share their views on the importance of diversity, equity, and inclusion in their personal and professional lives.

March 15, 2024
March 15, 2024

In celebration of Women's History Month, we are excited to amplify the voices of the women at Chartwell Law. Check back throughout the month for more insights and perspectives from our female attorneys.

This week, we hear from Erin Hall, Carly Ross, and Sarah Wheeler, who answered the thought-provoking question: What changes for women would you like to see in the future of the legal industry?

Erin Hall (Chattanooga, TN): I think the changes I would like to see for women in the future of the legal industry would be changes I would like to see for women across most industries. Despite it already being 2024, we still have a long way to go to make things equitable for women in their careers. Women still earn less than men on average and more is asked of them both inside and outside work. I would like to see better maternity (and paternity) and family leave policies, legislation that protects women and their careers, childcare benefits and stipends available to women in their professions, and a quality over quantity approach when it comes to hours spent at work. In the legal field specifically, there is still a disparity between opportunities offered to men versus women and many of our elected positions that are a part of the broader legal system are still held predominantly by men. The future I would like to see for women in the legal industry, and everywhere, is one that would also be wholly intersectional. Some basic ways I think we can all participate in moving towards this future would be to implement flexible working, equal pay, provide parental leave, and to promote women for good work and recognize their contributions even when they haven’t asked for the raise.

Carly Ross (Chicago, IL): I would like to see the legal industry continue to work towards equal representation for women by continuing to encourage more women to enter, and most importantly, stay, in the legal profession, helping to ensure equal opportunities for advancement and leadership roles. Recognizing and addressing the unique challenges faced by women in law as well as supporting advocacy efforts and reforms aimed at promoting women’s rights and interests will all lead to increased visibility and representation of women in the legal industry at large, as well as equal opportunities for career advancement. I am very fortunate to be part of a firm that already strives for this by offering outstanding mentorship and support to women through a strong network of female leaders.

Sarah Wheeler (Providence, RI): Instead of suggesting changes, I would suggest staying the same. In my experience, there exists a real culture of women helping women in the legal industry. I see it both within Chartwell and in my local legal community. Keep it going! Like RBG said, “when there are 9”!