Category Archives: Legal Professionals

Another Female Wisconsin Legal Pioneer Featured this Women’s History Month

The history of Wisconsin first female lawyers is represented well this Women’s History Month.

This weekend, the Bartell Theatre in Madison is featuring a play about Lavinia Goodell, the first female lawyer in Wisconsin.  I posted about that a few weeks ago.

Today, I call your attention to an article about another of Wisconsin’s female legal pioneers, Kate Kane.  Kane was a fierce advocate for the rights of women and the poor and wasn’t afraid to ruffle a few feathers to be heard.  Like Goodell, she faced severe discrimination in her legal practice.

kate_kane

In fact, she became so frustrated with her treatment in the courtroom that in 1883 she threw a glass of water right in the face of a Milwaukee judge.  “Judge Mallory has been trying to drive me out of this court; he has continually insulted and misused me, but I bore it.  Today, I wanted to insult Judge Mallory just where he had insulted me – in open court.”

And insult him she did.  The judge was furious and Kane was hauled off to jail for contempt of court.  “I shall stay here for ten years before I pay that fine,” Kane declared defiantly.  The story made national news and Kane was driven out of practice and forced to relocate to Chicago.

The article is entitled “Citizen Kane: The Everyday Ordeals and Self-Fashioned Citizenship of Wisconsin’s ‘Lady Lawyer'” and is available in the February 2015 issue of the Law and History Review.

Lavinia, Play about First Female Lawyer in Wisconsin, Debuts this Month

This  month, the Bartell Theatre is featuring a  new play about the first female lawyer in Wisconsin.  “Lavinia” debuts March 19-21 in Madison before moving on to Janesville, Wausau, and Superior.

From the State Bar of Wisconsin announcement:

In 1879, Lavinia Goodell made history by becoming the first female lawyer admitted to the bar in Wisconsin. To celebrate her accomplishments and the impact on the legal profession and gender equality movement, four cities will host the production or reading of Lavinia, written by Madison playwright Betty Diamond.

The play explores the challenges Goodell faced including a Wisconsin Supreme Court convinced that women belonged in their traditional roles. It also honors the support she received from the Rock County bar, which had admitted her in 1874, and John Cassoday who introduced the legislation that prohibited gender-based discrimination in bar admissions.

Madison performances include a talk-back after the show with UW Law School Professor Linda Greene.

Update 3/4/15:  Today’s Inside Track has good article about the play with more background on Goodell’s struggle for admittance to the bar as well as some comments from Chief Justice Abrahamson.

Discussion by Authors of “Lawyers Who Shaped Dane County”

Lawyers Who Shaped Dane County is a new book from the University of Wisconsin Press that tells the story of the legal profession in Dane County, Wisconsin, from the 1850s to the early 1980s. Featuring short biographies of attorneys, judges, and law firms, this book also discusses the training, practice, public roles, work climate, and perspectives of lawyers during more than a century of change. This book is available at the UW Law Library is and currently on our new book shelf.
Authors Paul Humphrey, a Dane County Assistant District Attorney, Tom Ragatz, who practiced law in Madison for 31 years at Foley & Lardner, LLP, and Sally Garbo Wedde, a local writer and editor, will be speaking about the book next week at the Sequoya Public Library in Madison. They will talk about the changes in the practice of law and law firms, the emergence of women lawyers, the UW Law School, the courthouses and the Dane County Bar. Come and hear stories and interesting facts about lawyers over the years.
Event details:
Monday, November 26, 2012
7:00 pm – 8:30 pm
Sequoya Public Library
4340 Tokay Blvd
Madison, WI 53711
For more information, contact Elena Spagnolie at 608-263-0734

CALI Conference to be Held at Marquette in 2011

Looks like the 2011 Conference for Law School Computing (CALI Conference) will be held at Marquette Law School next summer. I can’t wait to attend!
From John Mayer posted to the Teknoids list:

Just got back from a visit to the amazing new building that Marquette has built for their law school. I am delighted to announce that the 2011 Conference for Law School Computing – the 21st Annual “CALI Conference” will be held at Marquette on Thursday-Saturday, June 23-25. 2011.
We are planning a special track that focuses specifically on electronic casebooks/course materials and the Ignite Plenary that was so well received at the 2010 conference will be back.
We have our sights set on a nearby hotel, but haven’t signed the contract just yet, so follow CALI on Twitter (@CALIorg), friend us on FaceBook or visit the conference website at www.cali.org/conference for more info in the future. You can view videos from most of the 2010 conference sessions right now at that location.

2010 Wisconsin Law Journal Unsung Heroes Awards Accepting Nominations

It’s time to nominate your favorite legal support staff for the 2010 Wisconsin Law Journal Unsung Heroes awards. Categories include:
* Legal Secretary
* Paralegal
* Law Librarian
* Firm Administrator
* Human Resources
* IT Specialists
* Legal Marketing
* Court Clerk
* Court Reporter
* Lifetime Achievement
Download and mail the PDF nomination form or complete it online. Nominations will be accepted until September 3, 2010.
See the Wisconsin Law Journal website for more information.

2009 Unsung Heroes Nominees

Congratulations to this year’s nominees for the Unsung Heroes award presented by the Wisconsin Law Journal. The award seeks to recognize the legal professionals whose efforts are essential to helping law firms and courts run efficiently.
Categories include Secretary, Paralegal, Law Librarian, Administrator, Human Resources, IT Specialists, Marketers, and Court Staff.
I’d like to give a special mention to my law library colleague nominees:

  • Jennifer Dedolph, Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren SC
  • Diane Duffey, Habush Habush & Rottier, SC
  • Carol Hassler, Wisconsin State Law Library

LegalTube, a New Video Matchmaking Site for Lawyers & Clients

Robert Ambrogi over at Law.com’s Legal Blogwatch discusses LegalTube, an interesting new video matching site for lawyers and clients:

A new video site wants to play matchmaker for lawyers and clients. The idea behind LegalTube is to help potential clients find the right lawyer by letting them view videos of the lawyers discussing themselves and their areas of practice.
“LegalTube is the only legal directory where finding a lawyer or the answers to your law-related questions is as easy as channel surfing,” the site promises. “It’s a way to connect attorneys and potential clients by offering ‘face time’ in the comfort of your living room.”…
Although there is not much here yet, it certainly makes sense for lawyer directories to match videos with profiles. Videos let potential clients get a sense of the lawyer in a way that simple text never could. Plenty of lawyers have already discovered this with videos on YouTube. Take those YouTube-style videos and arrange them by city, state and practice area, and you could have something useful for consumers. This site is not there yet, but it might be heading in the right direction.

Employers Increasingly Using Social Networks to Screen Job Candidates

“According to a new study conducted by Harris Interactive for CareerBuilder.com, 45 percent of employers questioned are using social networks to screen job candidates,” reports the New York Times.
More from the article:

The report showed that Facebook was the most popular online destination for employers to do their online sleuthing, followed by LinkedIn and MySpace. In addition, 7 percent followed job candidates on Twitter….
More than half of the employers who participated in the survey said that provocative photos were the biggest factor contributing to a decision not to hire a potential employee, while 44 percent of employers pinpointed references to drinking and drug use as red flags.
Other warning signs included bad-mouthing of previous employers and colleagues and poor online communication skills.

Source: WTN News

Some WI Firms Cancel, Reduce Summer Associate Programs

From the Wisconsin Law Journal:

Though large firms around the country have been cancelling their summer associate programs, the trend had yet to hit in Wisconsin.
Until now.
Milwaukee-based Quarles & Brady LLP confirmed that they have “suspended” their 2010 summer associate program…
Though Quarles is the only firm in the state so far to confirm its cancellation of the 2010 summer program, others have shortened their programs or reduced the number of hires.
Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren SC trimmed its program from 12 to 10 weeks this year, and Godfrey & Kahn SC went from 12 weeks to nine.