Ania Rontaler

Ania Rontaler is a Corporate partner in the London office of international law firm, Simmons & Simmons. Ania trained and qualified as a solicitor at Simmons & Simmons, having joined in September 2003. She studied law and French at Exeter University, with one year spent studying French law in (the beautiful and very sunny!) Aix-en-Provence, France. She advises clients on a variety of aspects of corporate law and has a strong focus on the asset management sector, advising alternative investment managers on all aspects of their business. In 2015, Ania was listed as one of the 50 leading women in hedge funds by the global publication, The Hedge Fund Journal. Ania has spent time at the firm’s office in The Netherlands, and on secondment to a well-known US hedge fund manager, and is also the co-chair of the Simmons & Simmons women’s network, The Number One Club (TNOC). TNOC has both an internal and external focus – internally, TNOC looks to support women throughout the firm in their careers by putting on a variety of “Looking After Number One” events and externally, the network puts on various events focussed on its female client base.

Why First 100 Years is important

The First 100 Years project is a fantastic initiative which we (Penny Miller and Ania Rontaler, on behalf of Simmons & Simmons) are very excited and proud to be part of. It is a great opportunity to highlight the history of women in law for those in the legal profession and for the general public. The project will allow us to celebrate the achievements of many highly successful and leading women who have paved the way for so many other women in law over the last 100 years. Hopefully, they will be able to act as inspiration and role models for even more women as a result of this project. 2019 marks the 100 year anniversary of women being allowed to enter into the legal profession in the UK. Since becoming involved with this project, we have learned so much about the history of women in the law, much of which has been both surprising and inspirational. Having an understanding of the history in this area provides context for the way we work today and is important when trying to improve the future. Penny and I are the chairs of the Simmons & Simmons women’s network, The Number One Club and have a very keen interest in gender diversity issues and initiatives. Whilst so much has been achieved in terms of increasing gender diversity in law, there is still much work to be done and no one solution. We are particularly excited about hosting the first annual First 100 Years conference at our offices. We see this as a great way of spreading the word about this fantastic, important project and bringing together interested people from across the legal industry – solicitors, barristers, academics, students etc. We are very much looking forward to 2 November!