Women's Initiative and Leadership Council
The Fisher Phillips Women’s Initiative and Leadership Council Strives to Advance Women Within the Firm and in the Legal Community
Fisher Phillips greatly values the importance of having women leaders throughout the firm, the legal profession, and in our communities. The firm has a long history of promoting women.
Our firm's commitment to diversity is nearly a half-century old. Our first woman partner was Margie Pitts Hames, hired in 1962. She was soon joined by Dorothy Toth Beasley, who later served as a judge on the Georgia Court of Appeals. In 1973, Ms. Hames and Judge Beasley made legal history by being the first women attorneys to argue both sides of a case in the U.S. Supreme Court. The case was Doe v. Bolton, a companion case to Roe v. Wade. Although both were at different firms at the time, Ike Fisher, one of our founders, referred to the historic argument as one of the proudest moments of his career.
In an effort to continue to advance that commitment, the firm developed its Women’s Initiative and Leadership Council (WILC).
The WILC committee is comprised of partners, associates, and staff from our offices around the nation. WILC has been charged with several important missions.
First and foremost, WILC focuses on recruiting, developing and retaining women attorneys and fostering female leadership within the firm. As one example, we have formed a partnership with the OnRamp Fellowship Program, designed for women attorneys who took a leave of absence from their prior positions and are now looking to return to the practice of law. The Fellowship is a year-long program with our firm to help high performing women increase their skills, experience, and contacts. WILC also seeks to foster mentor relationships among women attorneys and encourages the sponsorship of female attorneys to assist in their development as leaders both within and outside of the firm.
WILC serves to provide a forum for attorneys to share experiences and brings together women attorneys in the firm to share resources, exchange ideas and build business development opportunities. The committee looks closely at cultivating an inclusive environment while addressing important issues such as work-life balance and preventing attrition.
WILC also looks critically at the advancement of women outside the firm and seeks to spearhead programs and projects geared towards that goal. The committee promotes business development by and for women by hosting and supporting various women-focused events and programs and encourages firm participation in bar organizations and other groups with a similar mission of promoting the advancement of women in the law and society.
Purpose & Goals:
- Recruitment and retention of female attorneys and support staff
- Mentoring and sponsorship opportunities
- Business development and building client relationships
- Work/life management considerations
- Leadership development and opportunities
- Discussion forum and sharing of experiences, ideas and resources
- Participation and involvement in various women-focused organizations, bar associations and other groups