WASHINGTON — Law360 featured Wilkinson Stekloff founding partner Beth Wilkinson in a piece spotlighting “five women who are succeeding in largely male-dominated areas” of trial law.
In her interview with Law360, Wilkinson recounted how she has “had to fight for respect from male opponents and supposed allies alike.” In one anecdote, Wilkinson described her first civil trial in private practice, where, as the only woman playing a lead role, she was belittled and demeaned by both opposing counsel and her own co-counsel. “Instead of letting the male attorneys throw her off focus,” according to the article, “she used the experience as motivation to win her case — which she did.”
When Wilkinson later ran into that same opposing counsel, she recalled that “his approach has changed in that I think he takes me more seriously. Beating him twice is probably the best revenge for that,” Wilkinson said.
Beth Wilkinson has been lead counsel in over 50 jury trials and has continued to be one of the few — or only— women selected for that role, the article notes. “One of the hardest things is that when you walk into the door, people wonder whether you can do it when you’re a woman; and when you’re a man, they assume you can,” Wilkinson told Law360. Wilkinson was previously ranked among Benchmark Litigation’s “Top 250 Women in Litigation” and among the “Top 10 Female Litigators” in the country.
The feature comes on the heels of Wilkinson Stekloff being recognized by Law360 as of the “best law firms for female partners” and “best law firms for female attorneys” among all law firms with 20 to 49 lawyers. Though women represent just over one-third of all attorneys in private practice, Law360 recognized Wilkinson Stekloff for its strong female leadership, including two female name partners, and for achieving gender parity among the firm’s attorneys.