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How Women Lawyers Can Help to Eliminate Bias, Improve Diversity and Inclusion, and Advance their Legal Careers Despite the Presence of Gender Bias

Program Number: 2834 Presenter: Alton (Al) B. Harris, Esq. (2018), Andrea S. Kramer, Esq. (2018)

Andie Kramer, partner at McDermott Will & Emery, and Alton B. Harris, partner at Nixon Peabody LLP, discuss the nature and extent of the achievement disparity between female and male lawyers, and why and how gender stereotypes and the biases that flow from them cause this disparity by preventing women from advancing in their legal careers as far and as fast as men. They then provide women with specific insights and communication techniques they can use to avoid or overcome these often subtle and unconscious gender biases. The program includes a discussion of the relevance of ABA’s Model Rule 8.4(g) and ABA Resolution 302.

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Mental Health, Substance Abuse and Stress in the Legal Profession: Addressing the Toxicity that Puts Lawyers at Risk

Program Number: 2830 Presenter: Joan Bibelhausen, JD

Recent research confirms the high incidence of mental health, stress and substance abuse issues in the legal profession, and the culture of the profession is often identified as a culprit. As a response, the National Task Force on Lawyer Well-Being released The Path to Lawyer Well-Being: Practical Recommendations for Positive Change. According to the Task Force, “We are at a crossroads. To maintain public confidence in the profession, to meet the need for innovation in how we deliver legal services, to increase access to justice, and to reduce the level of toxicity that has allowed mental health and substance use disorders to fester among our colleagues, we have to act now.” Every lawyer is at risk for mental health and substance abuse issues and every lawyer can help a colleague. Learn to identify the predictors, warning signs and ethical risks of mental health (including substance use) issues and learn ways

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What Male Lawyers Can Do to Eliminate Gender Bias and Inappropriate Sexual Conduct in the #MeToo and #TimesUp Era

Program Number: 2815 Presenter: Alton (Al) B. Harris, Esq. (2018), Andrea S. Kramer, Esq.

Andie Kramer, partner at McDermott Will & Emery, and Alton B. Harris, partner at Nixon Peabody LLP, discuss how male lawyers can eliminate gender discrimination and increase gender diversity in the legal profession. Topics include: discussion of the lack of diversity at senior levels in the legal profession and its gender achievement gap; identification of the biases and stereotypes that cause the gender achievement gap and the culture it fosters that can lead to actual and potential sexual harassment and misconduct; a review of the ABA Mission Statement, ABA Model Rule 8.4(g), and Resolution 302 of the ABA House of Delegates (February 2018); and suggested practical, effective steps men and the legal organizations they control can take to increase diversity and avoid inappropriate sexual conduct in the #MeToo and #TimesUp era.

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Mental Health, Competence, Substance Abuse and Addiction in the Legal Profession: A Focus on Gender Distinctions

Program Number: 2726 Presenter: Joan Bibelhausen, JD

Studies show that lawyers are at greater risk for alcohol use disorders, depression, other mental illness and stress than members of other professions or the general population. Women and men attorneys differ in the ways and reasons that these problems develop, their symptoms, their willingness to get help and the types of treatment that are most effective. Stigma is a particular issue for women. Learn about these gender differences and how to recognize problems, reach out to offer help and the resources that are available for men and women in the legal profession.

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Positive Steps to Increase Gender Diversity and Eliminate Bias in the Legal Profession

Program Number: 2721 Presenter: Alton (Al) B. Harris, Esq., Andrea S. Kramer, Esq.

In this lively and thought-provoking program, Andrea S. Kramer and Alton B. Harris discuss how implicit gender bias can prevent legal organizations (such as corporate legal departments and law firms) from achieving their desired diversity goals and surprisingly, their economic goals. Using the ABA's Professional Responsibility Model Rule 8.4(g) and state bar professional responsibility rules as a skeletal structure, the presenters discuss how gender stereotypes and implicit biases hold legal organizations back from achieving necessary gender diversity and inclusion, and reduce career opportunities and advancement progress for women attorneys. They also focus on how people can avoid or overcome the discriminatory negative effects of gender bias, such as in the career-sensitive decisions (hiring, assignments, evaluations, compensation, and promotion policies) that are most often affected by implicit biases. Finally, they provide: (1) tips and an action plan for addressing implicit biases in corporate legal departments and law firms that can be used

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