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Women's Initiative
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The Baker Donelson Women's Initiative is committed to creating an environment where women attorneys and advisors thrive.

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Celebrating Women's History Month and Women Leaders March 10, 2021

Why Baker Donelson?

Named as a 2023 "Best Law Firm for Women & Diversity" by Seramount
Ranked 12th in Diversity for Women by Vault in 2023
50% of the Firm's department chairs are women
Women represent more than 35% of the Firm's attorneys and advisors

The Baker Donelson Women's Initiative is committed to creating an environment where women attorneys and advisors thrive, increasing the Firm’s ability to provide unparalleled client service.

Baker Donelson formed the Women's Initiative to:

  • Improve the recruitment and retention of women attorneys by addressing issues that disproportionally affect women.
  • Increase the representation of women in leadership positions at the Firm and the communities we serve.
  • Heed the call of our clients to provide diversified attorney teams by equipping our women to be trusted advisors.
  • Improve career development for its women attorneys, thereby enhancing the economic viability of the Firm.

The Firm is focused on recruiting and promoting women attorneys, maintaining our commitment to developing new opportunities for our women attorneys and providing innovative approaches to supporting women in the Firm.


Women attorneys serve as leaders across the Firm and in the communities we serve. Currently, women serve as President and COO, on the Board of Directors, as office managing shareholders, and as practice group and committee chairs.

The commitment of Baker Donelson's women attorneys reaches well beyond the Firm. Many serve in positions of leadership in their communities and industries, including the past president of the American Bar Association (ABA), the past chair of the ABA Section of Litigation, past presidents of AHLA and many more. Baker Donelson believes that encouraging and supporting women leaders ensures a better Firm to serve our clients and our communities.

Flexibility and Work-Life Balance

The Firm's gender-neutral parental leave policy allows for 16 weeks of paid leave for full-time and part-time attorneys who are primary caregivers surrounding the birth, adoption or foster placement of a child under the age of six. The policy also includes intermittent leave, allowing both primary and non-primary caregiver attorneys to continue to work on an intermittent basis during leave, and to transition back to full-time practice at their own pace.

Baker Donelson's Parental Leave Committee includes more than 20 trained Parental Leave Advisors across the Firm's offices to provide expectant and new parents guidance on how to navigate the transitions before taking leave and upon their return, as well as serving as a contact during leave.

"We are committed to doing what it takes to advance women within the Firm and our communities," said Women's Initiative Chair Christy Crider. "Diverse teams serve our clients better, and client service is what we do."


The Women's Initiative mentoring program provides women attorneys with feedback and advice to help them take ownership of their careers and advance within the Firm, the profession and the community. The Firm's goal is to develop top performers in our attorney ranks. We provide guidance, support and networking opportunities at all levels of career development. At each stage of our women attorneys' professional development, we address the challenges – and opportunities – that are unique to women attorneys. Our research and internal focus group meetings have shown that the best approach is to offer a menu of options and avenues for mentoring. Some of our options are office-specific while others are available to all women attorneys and advisors across the Firm. Several options are also available to men attorneys and public policy advisors. Women's Initiative mentoring options include one-on-one mentoring, mentoring circles, and office-level mentoring events. To ensure our message permeates our culture, all attorneys and advisors in Firm leadership are trained on the importance of mentoring and sponsoring women attorneys.

Follow us online:

Link to Baker Donelson Women's Initiative LinkedIn Showcase Link to @BDWomen on Twitter Link to the Baker Donelson Women's Initiative's Instagram page

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