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Dear WBA Family:

I am excited to serve as your president this year and look forward to participating in and attending the great programming that is put on by our brilliant co-chairs. In addition to our 29 Committees and Forums, I have seven areas on which we plan to focus this bar year. They include: Wellness; Women and Finance; Women of Color Taskforce; More Than an Attorney; Future Leaders; Advocacy Impact Initiative; and CLE to Cuba.

If you are interested in serving as a co-chair for a committee, forum or one of the seven initiatives, please email admin@wbadc.org.

Last bar year, we “Marched On” and achieved so much to put women on equal footing as men. But there is still work to be done. I’m reminded of a saying:

“If there were ever a time to dare, to make a difference, to embark on something worth doing, it is now." (Author Unknown)

We have to do better. It is time for high heels to be in high places. And together we can be the change to move the needle forward.

As I started to prepare for my term as president, I decided to look back and read the rich history of this organization. And what I found was that issues we faced a 100 plus years ago are still some of the same issues that we face today. Some may say if we are facing the same issues from yesteryear, why fight? Why stand up? But what I also discovered was that our founders and many members of the WBA, against all odds, changed laws and became the voices on issues that confronted women and girls in the legal profession. So why stand up and be heard? It’s simple “Who dares nothing, need hope for nothing” (Friedrich Schiller). Thus, my theme for this year is DARE TO MAKE AN IMPACT

While we have made great advances over the past 101 years, our work is far from done. Now is not the time to be fatigued or discouraged. It is the time to continue to stand up and be heard and DARE TO MAKE AN IMPACT

We do this by providing a voice on legislation that impacts women and girls, by becoming more involved with the community, and offering our legal expertise to organizations who support our cause. We stand up and make an impact by bringing all the players to the table—both women and men—and focus on equal pay for women, equal opportunity, and a workplace free of harassment. Finally, we respond to the problem of 2.9% minority women partners by creating a taskforce made up of in-house attorneys and their outside firms and design a program that will provide women of color with origination credit and first chair opportunities. 

Our founders could have become discouraged as the many doors closed in front of them. Instead, they dared and founded the WBA when the Bar Association of DC refused to open its membership to women. They dared and founded the Washington College of Law to provide women access to a legal education. The WBA dared and lobbied for equal pay for women, voting rights, and equal access to justice. Judge Joyce Hens Green and Dovey Johnson Roundtree dared and made the WBA inclusive.

So my challenge to everyone for the 2018-2019 Bar Year is: Let’s make an IMPACT. I dare you. 

WBA Announces #OurVoices Campaign To Address Sexual Harassment in the Workplace
The Women’s Bar Association of the District of Columbia (WBA) is proud to announce a new campaign—called #OurVoices—that pledges the WBA’s support for every person who has experienced sexual harassment or a #MeToo moment and promises swift action from the WBA in the form of programming, policy statements, social media campaigns, and more, to achieve workplaces that are free of sexual harassment. The WBA also extends its continuing support to those firms and other organizations that continue to work to eliminate sexual harassment within and outside of their workplaces. Click here to read more.

News and Highlights

Call for WBA Members To Assist With Sexual Harassment Questions
From time to time, members of our strategic partner organization, Women in Government Relations (“WGR”), may wish to consult briefly with an attorney about basic questions regarding behavior that is possibly sexual harassment. To support our WGR sisters, we are compiling a list of any WBA members who have expertise in sexual harassment law, and are willing to provide a brief, no-charge, telephone consultation. If you have such expertise, and are willing to help WGR members, please contact Carol Montoya (carol@wbadc.org), who will place your contact information on a WBA referral list.

Endorsement Requests

Requests for endorsement for the DC Superior Court (Holeman vacancy) must be received by 5:00pm, Thursday, October 11, 2018. Click here for information on our judicial endorsements process.

All-In for Women

The WBA is recognizing law firms with 100% WBA membership among their female lawyers. The WBA is committed to advancing the interests of women lawyers, and we applaud law firms that share this commitment and demonstrate it by encouraging WBA membership. This month, we thank Kalijarvi, Chuzi, Newman & Fitch, P.C. and KaiserDillon PLLC for being All-In for Women!

If your firm (or office or practice group, in the case of a larger firm) is interested in being All-In for Women, please contact the WBA Membership Committee at membershipcomm@wbadc.org.

Volunteer Opportunities
Get Involved with our Committees and Forums and maximize your WBA membership. Applications for those interested in serving as a co-chair or on a committee are accepted on an ongoing basis. Email admin@wbadc.org or call 202-639-8880 for more information.

Our Mission

Maintaining the honor and integrity of the profession; promoting the administration of justice; advancing and protecting the interests of women lawyers; promoting their mutual improvement; and encouraging a spirit of friendship.


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