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President's Message

Stacy R. Horth-Neubert
WLALA President 2016-2017

Although WLALA has been talking about this for years, lawyers nationwide now have started a major conversation about equal pay for women. It's a conversation long overdue, aimed at a problem that is astonishing in its magnitude.

According to the Major, Lindsey & Africa's most recent partner pay survey, published in October, the pay gap between male and female big firm partners is a whopping 44% But, the problem is not confined to big law; the ABA pegs the median pay gap at all law firms at 20%. A similar gender pay gap (about 18%) exists among in house counsel. No wonder we're talking about pay equity.

The pay gap in big law is primarily being attributed to origination credit; that excuse is used in smaller firms as well. Female lawyers bring in less business, the story goes, and therefore their pay reflects that practical reality.

The problem, of course, is that there is well-known bias at play when it comes to origination credit. The root causes are many, and range from pressure on women to remain service partners rather than develop their own books of business, to failure to ensure succession plans are free from the effects of implicit bias, to outright bullying by male partners. And women have noticed.

 

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WLALA Foundation 10th Annual Giving Campaign
 

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Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles
634 S. Spring St., Ste. 617
Los Angeles, CA 90014
Phone: (213) 892-8982
Fax: (213) 892-8948
Email: info@wlala.org
Website: www.wlala.org