Pumping and Practicing: A Delicate Balance for Breastfeeding Lawyers

Pumping and Practicing: A Delicate Balance for Breastfeeding Lawyers

Working mothers who nurse must express their breast milk—a process that takes about 20 minutes—every two to three hours to supply food for their babies and cue their bodies to continue making enough milk. For lawyer moms, who often practice at the whim of client demands, it’s a huge challenge to keep a set schedule to pump their milk, especially in a profession in which when they often can’t control times for meetings, breaks and court appearances.


PDF: Pumping and Practicing_ A Delicate Balance for Breastfeeding Lawyers _ Law

As Austin’s Legal Market Explodes, Firms Rush In

As Austin’s Legal Market Explodes, Firms Rush In

This article originally published in Texas Lawyer magazine on April 4.

When John Gilluly started practicing law in Austin in 1998, the city’s legal market lived and breathed real estate, government and practices surrounding those areas.

But everything was changing.

The growth of the city’s technology sector in the dot-com boom of the late 1990s was attracting West Coast firms that wanted to expand in Austin, recalled Gilluly, who then was an associate in the Austin office of the West coast firm of Gray Cary Ware & Freidenrich, a predecessor of DLA Piper.

Then everything changed again.

The dot-com bust of the early 2000s dashed the hopes of some of the firms, which closed their doors, causing partners to scurry to other firms. Gray Cary remained, although it shrank its size, said Gilluly, now managing partner in the Texas offices of DLA Piper in Austin.

Since then, he said Austin’s legal market—and his firm—have grown steadily.

“Other firms’ lawyers have either transitioned to become aligned with the business economy in Austin by working with tech companies or other growth companies,” Gilluly said. “Now, unlike the early ’90s when I started, you have a reasonably robust market of lawyers who have worked in this area for a long time now—over 15 years. Across the board, the firms for the most part have grown.”

By every marker, the economy in Austin is booming—spurring startups and business relocations, creating impressive numbers of jobs and flooding the city with new residents. The growth has also boosted the legal market—and law firms are reacting by opening new offices or expanding existing operations.

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Nonprofit Law Firms Benefit Disenchanted Attorneys, ‘In-Between’ Clients

This article published originally on law.com on Sept. 7, 2016.

Lee DiFilippo earned hefty paychecks for 13 years as a corporate transactional attorney in Big Law and later as in-house counsel to a couple of corporations.

But it wasn’t enough.

“I was pushing paper for corporate America. I was paid a lot of money. But I never felt I was doing anything that benefited anyone,” DiFilippo said.

In 2012, she found her true calling when she helped a poor woman get a divorce from an abusive husband. “I never knew there was such a need. I was always in an ivory tower in big high rises, working for firms, and I was shielded from it.”

Following her passion and joining a growing movement across the country, DiFilippo now runs a nonprofit law firm in Austin—DiFilippo Holistic Law Center—to serve people who make too much money to qualify for legal aid, but too little to afford a traditional lawyer. Previously, DiFilippo worked at Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton and then at Reed Smith, before going-in-house at Textron Systems and Bell Helicopter.

The growing popularity of nonprofit law firms aimed to help the “in-between” economic demographic stems, in large part, from a 2014 article in The Atlantic, which profiled Shantelle Argyle’s organization, Open Legal Services, in Salt Lake City. Argyle, co-founder and executive director of Open Legal Services, said that since then, people in 35 states have called her, and she’s consulted with two dozen to help them create nonprofits.

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Cycling Lawyers Improve Their Bods and Their Business

Lawyers who want to get fit have a lot of options—running, lifting weights, cross-training, yoga. But for some attorneys, cycling is yielding more benefits than just shedding pounds.

These lawyers say that the sport fosters camaraderie and conversation, which allows them to meet new clients, get closer to existing clients and strengthen relationships with colleagues.


PDF: Cycling Lawyers Improve Their Bods and Their Business _ Law

The Pink Ladies: Mary Kay’s Top Lawyer Keeps Makeup Mavens’ Meeting Looking Good

The flashy pink Cadillac symbolizes ultimate success for Mary Kay Inc. beauty consultants. And for Mary Kay’s top lawyer, working with those consultants is the best part of her job.

Chief Counsel Laura Beitler — who joined the company in 2000 as a staff attorney — manages Mary Kay’s 11-lawyer legal department and provides counsel to European subsidiaries. Her legal department helps plan Mary Kay’s annual event and teaches legal-oriented classes to new and veteran beauty consultants.

The coveted Cadillacs and other pink rides will grace the Dallas Convention Center from July 21 through Aug. 6, as Mary Kay’s annual meeting attracts 30,000 beauty consultants to learn more about Addison-based Mary Kay and how to boost their independent businesses.

“It is like a big party with Cadillacs, makeup and a lot of women,” says Mary Kay spokeswoman Kathrina McAfee. She describes the scene: “Thousands of women, perfectly clothed, sharing their success stories with other women, seeing the excitement in their eyes.”

PDF: The Pink Ladies Mary Kays Top Lawyer Keeps Makeup Mavens Meeting Looking Good

Courts Prepare for Unaccompanied Minor Cases

Courts Prepare for Unaccompanied Minor Cases

This story originally published in Texas Lawyer on Feb. 12, 2015.

The “flood” of unaccompanied Central and South American children entering the U.S. last year has only trickled into Texas courts so far, although some experts are watching for a bigger rush further downstream.

Federal courts have jurisdiction over immigration, but state courts play a role in some unaccompanied minor cases. As the so-called surge of unaccompanied children dominated the headlines last summer, David Slayton, administrative director of the Texas Office of Court Administration, said he was afraid that state courts might get hit with thousands of cases at once.

“If that does happen, that will tax the system,” Slayton said, adding, “At this point, we are seeing them trickle into the system, and we believe if they continue in that fashion, we are probably able to handle it with existing judicial resources.”