Female role-models in the Law: the good, the bad and the amazing!

Published 25th January 2019

As a woman called to the Bar in the late 1990’s I was surprised to find a female pupil-master whose approach to pupillage was to make it (in her own words) as tough for me as it had been for her some 15 years earlier. Not only was my male colleague (also a pupil at the same level as me) treated more favourably in terms of getting work, he was also not given the ‘housekeeping tasks’ of collecting the pupil-master’s lunch and dry-cleaning! Not the best of starts in the Law, but I’m pleased to say that I went on to forge my own career and meet some of the most inspiring female role-models that the industry has to offer. Now, as a female leader, I am grateful to all the senior individuals I’ve worked with on the journey so far, both male and female: I have learnt something from each and everyone of them. As for the learning from my days in pupillage: I can say with confidence that I have never (and never will) ask someone who works with me to collect my dry-cleaning!

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