WILEF shows BigLaw firms with gender equity policies

June 26, 2014 The Women in Law Empowerment Forum (WILEF) offers some insight into which BigLaw firms are offering women lawyers a real chance to compete with male colleagues on a level playing field. In order to become Gold Standard certified, a law firm with 200 or more lawyers must comply with four of six benchmarks.

The benchmarks are as follows:
1. Women account for at least 20% of equity partners or alternatively, 33% or more of the attorneys becoming equity partners during the past twelve months.
2. Women represent at least 10% of firm chairs and office managing partners.
3. Women make up at least 20% of the firm’s primary governance committee.
4. Woman represent 20% or more of the firm’s compensation committee.
5. Women make up at least 25% of practice group leaders or department heads.
6. Women represent at least 10% of the top half of the most highly compensated partners.

This year, 45 firms managed to achieve Gold Standard status, up from 42 last year. Just seven firms met all six benchmarks for excellence. Those firms are: FordHarrison, Fredrikson & Byron, Holland & Hart, Hogan Lovells US, Norton Rose Fulbright, Reed Smith, and Shook Hardy & Bacon.

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