NEW YORK; August 4, 2016 — Leslie Richards-Yellen — Partner and Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer at Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP — was named President of the National Association of Women Lawyers (NAWL) for 2016–2017. Ms. Richards-Yellen, whose term began August 1, 2016, succeeds Marsha L. Anastasia, Vice President, Deputy General Counsel – The Americas for Pitney Bowes Inc., in the role.
Hinshaw's Chairman, Kevin Joseph Burke, stated, "As Hinshaw's Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer, Leslie has done a tremendous job helping our women attorneys succeed professionally. Her efforts have been key in ensuring that our female lawyers have a strong voice within Hinshaw, that they occupy senior leadership positions at every level of the firm, and that they are well-supported in providing top-notch legal services to our clients."
Added Ms. Anastasia, "Through her past leadership roles in NAWL and at Hinshaw, Leslie has helped NAWL fulfill its mission of empowering women in the legal profession. She will do an outstanding job furthering these efforts as NAWL's president."
Ms. Richards-Yellen explained, "I have a unique responsibility as President of NAWL to use the organization's muscle and resources to advance gender diversity in the legal profession. NAWL's mission to advance women in the legal profession began 117 years ago. It has been boldly advanced by terrific leaders like Marsha Anastasia, who collaboratively and ceaselessly works to make gender equality a reality. NAWL's strategies include the: NAWL Challenge, an initiative to increase the number of women lawyers in senior positions; NAWL Challenge Club, which connects corporations with talented women on track for equity partnership; and NAWL Survey, which holds the legal profession accountable for advancing gender diversity. Increasingly, NAWL is working to meet the unique challenges of minority and LBTQI women in the legal community."
Ms. Richards-Yellen recently relocated to Hinshaw's New York office from the firm's Chicago headquarters. As Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer, chair of Hinshaw's Diversity Committee and co-chair of the firm's Attorney Life Committee, she is a thought leader in the diversity and inclusion space, implements firm wide diversity initiatives, develops best practices and supports firm recruitment efforts. Ms. Richards-Yellen also is a member of Hinshaw's Executive Committee.
Ms. Richards-Yellen concentrates her practice in the public finance arena and has experience as in-house counsel. Since 2007 she has served as borrower's and issuer's counsel and workout counsel in more than $3 billion in financings.
Ms. Richards-Yellen has served as NAWL's President-Elect, Vice President and Program Committee Co-Chair. Passionate about increasing workplace diversity, she also is a member of the Chicago Committee on Minorities in Large Law Firms' Board of Directors and the Institute for Inclusion in the Legal Profession's Advisory Board. Ms. Richards-Yellen also serves on the State of Illinois Supreme Court's Commission on Professionalism and chairs its Diversity Committee, and on the Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation Board.
Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP is a national law firm with approximately 500 attorneys providing coordinated legal services across the United States and in London. Hinshaw lawyers partner with businesses, governmental entities and individuals to help them effectively address legal challenges and seize opportunities. Founded in 1934, the firm represents clients in complex litigation and in regulatory and transactional matters. For further information about Hinshaw, please visit www.hinshawlaw.com.