We bring to you an exciting opportunity to participate in a collaborative research project with the American Bar Association (ABA) and the American Bar Foundation (ABF) as part of the ABA Presidential Initiative “Achieving Long-Term Careers for Women in Law.” This research project aims to gain a deeper understanding of women’s advancement in the legal profession, the reasons why a significant percentage of women leave the profession, and better ways to retain women in law.

In March and April, the ABA and ABF will convene several focus groups in select cities across the U.S. (listed below), composed of women and men who received their J.D.s between 1982 and 2002. The ABA and ABF are seeking volunteers in the following categories to participate in these focus groups:

  1. Women who are no longer practicing law after 15 or more years of practice.
  2. Men who are no longer practicing law after 15 or more years of practice.
  3. Women who are currently practicing law in law firms or in-house and have practiced for 15 or more years.
  4. Men who are currently practicing law in law firms or in-house and have practiced for 15 or more years.

The ABA and ABF hope to gather insights based on participants’ personal experiences about the personal and structural factors that influence experienced lawyers’ decisions to continue practicing or leave the practice of law.

All information participants provide will be used for research purposes only and will be held in the strictest confidence by researchers at the ABF. Neither Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP nor the ABA will know you participated and your participation is completely voluntary. Comments provided in the focus groups may be reproduced in a joint ABA-ABF publication, but no identifying information will be disclosed.

Below are the dates and locations of the upcoming focus groups. If you are interested in participating, please contact Caroline Tipler at ctipler abfn.org at least two business days before the first scheduled focus group in the relevant city.*

  • New York, N.Y.: March 6 and 7
  • Washington, D.C.: March 8
  • Miami, Fla.: March 16
  • Chicago, Ill.: March 19 and 20; April 5 and 6
  • San Francisco, Calif.: March 22 and 23
  • Houston, Texas: March 26 and 27

*Participants are expected to participate for one 90-minute session on one of the days listed above.

More information about the ABA Presidential Initiative is available here.