Since its founding, Northeastern University School of Law has championed diversity in the legal profession. Today, more than half of our graduates are women, practicing in every conceivable setting — from private practice to public service, from the bench to business — as well as a host of non-legal fields. Our annual Women in the Law conference provides career guidance and professional development growth to women attorneys and other professionals at all stages of their careers, and brings together powerful decision makers from Boston and beyond. 

Save the Date

The 8th Annual Women in the Law Conference will be held at the law school on Friday, May 20th, 2016. 

Keynote Speaker: The Honorable Dana Fabe '76
Justice Dana Fabe was appointed to the Alaska Supreme Court in 1996. She was the first woman appointed to the state’s high court and has served three terms as chief justice. This will be Justice Fabe’s final public speech before she retires from the bench in June. (View bio)

Registration Link is Coming Soon! 

With thanks to our 2016 Conference Sponsors




        Ditrani Law          lingos-law         

  Morgan Brown            WMB logo  

Additional sponors to be announced. 
Learn about sponsorship opportunities here. 

Donate Now!

To support NUSL's Women in the Law program, please select the Judy and James Brown Fund.

Participate in the Conversation

To participate in Twitter conversations around the Women in the Law Conference, please add the hashtag #WIL2016 to your tweets.

Follow us on Twitter @NUSL.

2016 Conference Schedule

Friday, May 20, 2016

8:30 a.m.

Registration, Networking and Continental Breakfast

9:00 a.m.

Dean Jeremy Paul, Northeastern University School of Law
Jocelyn Jones ’98, Mytrang Nguyen ’96 and Maia Spilman ’96 (conference co-chairs)

9:15 - 10:15 a.m.

Keynote Address
The Honorable Dana Fabe '76, Justice, Supreme Court of Alaska 

10:15 - 10:30 a.m.


10:30 - 11:30 a.m.

Panel 1: Where Two Trails Converge: Navigating Social Media

Technology can be a powerful tool, moving mountains with mere keystrokes. The ubiquitous nature of social media, however, can quickly turn what is useful into treacherous territory, blurring the line between our public and private lives. In today’s world of things going “viral,” the increased use of Facebook and Twitter for marketing and the ease of capturing images with your smartphone, is anything truly private anymore? This panel will consider the dos and don’ts of social media in the digital age with tips for keeping you—and your practice—safely on the trail.

Moderator: Maia Spilman '96, Principal, Information/Data Privacy Law, Law Office of Maia T. Spilman

Speakers include: 

Asya Calixto '11, Director, Business and Legal Affairs, Brightcove 
Nancy Cremins '03, Partner, Gesmer Updegrove 
Nayyera Haq, Principal, Public Policy and Strategic Communications, 32 Advisors; Former White House Official; Former State Department Spokesperson 
Sofia Lingos '09, Founder and Principal Attorney, Lingos Law 

 11:35 a.m. - 12:35 p.m.

Panel 2: Partnering Your Way to the Summit: Public/Private Partnerships

Working as a team can lighten the load, whether you’re climbing a mountain or tackling tough legal issues. Rather than “going-it-alone,” forward-thinking lawyers are reaching across boundaries to benefit from the knowledge and expertise of colleagues in government, business, non-governmental organizations and private practice. Come to learn about creative partnerships that are leveraging resources to achieve important changes in society and leave inspired to find new networks and collaborations to advance your work.

Moderator: Martha Coakley, Former Attorney General (2007-2014), State of Massachusetts; Of Counsel, Foley Hoag 

Speakers include: 

Barbara Anthony, Senior Fellow in Healthcare, Pioneer Institute; Senior Fellow, Center for Business & Government, Harvard Kennedy School 
Navjeet Bal '89, Vice President and General Counsel, Social Finance, Inc. 
Ellen Lawton '93, Executive Director, National Center for Medical-Legal Partnership; Lead Research Scientist & Co-Principal Investigator, George Washington University 
Paige Scott Reed, Counsel, Anderson & Kreiger; Former General Counsel, Boston 2024 

12:40 - 1:40 p.m. 

Social Media Photos

Location: Dockser Classrooms 

12:45 - 1:45 p.m.

Location: Dockser Commons

1:45 - 2:45 p.m.

Breakout Sessions I

Content Marketing on Social Media for Lawyers: It's Not Too Late to Start Your Climb

Social media is more than just signing up for an online account with LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. Learn how you should implement these tools in your marketing arsenal in the field of law, how to create catchy content and grow your audience, and how to do so efficiently and ethically. 


Sofia Lingos '09, Founder and Principal Attorney, Lingos Law; Adjunct Faculty, Northeastern University School of Law 
Nayyera Haq, Principal, Public Policy and Strategic Communications, 32 Advisors; Former White House Official; Former State Department Spokesperson 

Speed Mentoring 

Just as it sounds! Make a contact for following up with at a later time and have a brief, direct conversation about your career path. 

Speed mentors include: 

Amy Hudspeth Cabell '91, Research Integrity & Compliance Officer, Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute
Leslie DiTrani '94, Principal, DiTrani Law 
Kelly Douglas '92, Senior Employment Counsel and U.S. Data Privacy Officer, Draeger Medical Systems 
Kathy Henry '00, General Counsel, Plymouth Rock Assurance Corporation 
Deborah Johnson '00, Director of Diversity and Outreach, Roger Williams University School of Law; President, Massachusetts Black Women Attorneys Association 
Christina Miller '98, Chief, District Courts, Suffolk County District Attorney's Office 
Mytrang Nguyen '96, Program Counsel, Legal Services Corporation 

Expanding Your Personal Public-Private Network to Create Opportunities 

It is common professional wisdom to "build your network", but cross-cutting and powerful networks require attention and cultivation to grow and evolve over time. Learn to think broadly about opportunities to expand your professional network in different sectors at each stage of your career with advice from women who have done the same. 

Leaders include: 

Navjeet Bal '89, Vice President and General Counsel, Social Finance, Inc. 
Ellen Lawton '93, Executive Director, National Center for Medical-Legal 

2:55 - 3:55 p.m.  

Breakout Sessions II: Knowledge Bars 

All Aboard: Moving Mountains by Diversifying Boards 

Research shows that diverse governing boards (both corporate and non-profit) correlate directly to better company performance—yet significant hurdles still exist to increasing female and minority representation in both private and public boardrooms. In this session, we'll look at the data and discuss barriers and opportunities for corporate board service as well as how to better position yourself to be tapped for a board role. 

Leader: Gina Perini, President and CEO, Somos, Inc. 

Book Talk: Arianna Huffington's Thrive and Redefining Success

Join us for a book club breakout -- a spirited discussion of Arianna Huffington's recent book, Thrive. Co-founder and editor-in-chief of the Huffington Post Media Group, Huffington took a bad fall in 2007 due to exhaustion and lack of sleep. Forced to reconsider her priorities, she rebounded by writing this book about redefining success and creating a life of well-being, wisdom and wonder. Co-moderators will lead us in a thoughtful discussion of work/life balance in light of the media mogul's personal journey. 


Sheryl Berkowitz '86, Partner, Fenstersheib & Berkowitz 
Margie Boone '92, Assistant Director and Director of Professional Development, Office of Career Services, Harvard Law School

Friends with Benefits

Amicus briefs and Making an Impact amicus briefs can play a tremendously powerful role in litigation, especially in regards to matters of public interest. Such briefs seek to educate the court by offering facts, analysis, or a perspective that the party briefing doesn't present. Learn how to think strategically about when to file an amicus brief and when to request a brief of others, be they public or private partners. 


Jocelyn Jones '98, Segal Roitman, Former Deputy Chief and Special Counsel for Fair Labor Policy, Fair Labor Division, Office of the Massachusetts Attorney General
Mytrang Nguyen '96, Program Counsel, Legal Services Corporation 

4:00 - 5:00 p.m.

Networking Reception

2016 Conference Co-Chairs

Jocelyn Jones ’98Segal Roitman, Former Deputy Chief and Special Counsel for Fair Labor Policy, Fair Labor Division, Office of the Massachusetts Attorney General
Mytrang Nguyen ’96, Program Counsel, Pro Bono Innovation Fund, Legal Services Corporation (LSC)
Maia Spilman ’96, Principal, Information/Data Privacy Law, Law Office of Maia T. Spilman

We gratefully acknowledge the efforts of our Women in the Law Conference Steering group:

  • Navjeet Bal ’89
  • Kelly Bonnevie ’92
  • Professor Emerita Judy Brown
  • Vanessa Candela ’00
  • Kelly Douglas ’92
  • Sofia Lingos ’09
  • Christina Miller ’98
  • Kathy Morris ’75
  • Gina Perini ’01
  • Cynthia Stewart Reed ’80
  • Rachael Rollins ’97


Visit our conference materials page for a list of selected articles on topics related to Women in the Law.