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April 2015 - President's Message
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President's Message - APRIL

Jennifer Romano
WLALA President 2014-2015

Have you ever tried “power poses” before making an important court appearance, going into a client pitch, or entering a job interview?  After watching a TED Talk by Amy Cuddy, a professor at Harvard Business School, I am persuaded to give this a try.

In her TED talk, Dr. Cuddy explains that by engaging in “power poses” for two minutes before an important event, you can make yourself feel more powerful and be perceived by others as more powerful as well.  A link to the full talk is at:    I will leave the science to Dr. Cuddy and her colleagues, but the general finding is that by outstretching your arms, standing or sitting tall, and generally taking up space, you can increase your testosterone levels and decrease cortisol levels.  You can do this in private, before you walk into your important meeting.  And, after your poses, you will appear more authoritative, comfortable, confident and passionate.  This of course may be particularly helpful for women, whose stature and voice often seem weaker compared to their male counterparts or adversaries. 

While I still am a bit skeptical, the idea that engaging in simple body movements can give me the extra edge when needed has an appeal.  So, if you see me outside the courthouse with outstretched arms, and attempting to take up space, you will know why.  I will be using my body to help me convince others that I am speaking with authority.

If you are looking for other opportunities to develop authority, comfort, confidence and passion, we have many WLALA events this month that can help you accomplish that goal.  On April 7, the Pro-Choice and Reproductive Rights Committee will hold a program on Litigation and Legislation Surrounding Crisis Pregnancy Centers.  These facilities often hold themselves out as health care facilities (even though they sometimes have no medical staff) and provide misleading information to women about their reproductive rights and options.  Come learn about the litigation and legislative actions relating to these facilities and see how you can become involved. 

On April 4, WLALA will hold its 20th Annual Litigators Forum: Topics in Privacy and Data Protection at the Westin Bonaventure.  The Forum will feature Ashlie Beringer, Vice President and Deputy General Counsel at Facebook, and also will feature an impressive panel of experts in the field. 

And, WLALA will hold two Power Lunch programs this month.  On April 24, WLALA volunteers will meet at the Torrance Courthouse to teach high school students about the judicial system, and on April 30, WLALA Volunteers will meet at the Van Nuys Courthouse for a similar program.  There is nothing like teaching what you know to others to make you feel powerful and accomplished.  We hope to see you there.