The theme of this year’s International Women’s Day is #ChooseToChallenge – what does that mean for you in your work life?
The #ChooseToChallenge theme means that, as well as challenging gender bias and inequality where I see it in my working life, I should also seek to identify my own unconscious bias and question my own thoughts and actions to ensure that we all live in a world where inequality is not tolerated.
Tell us about a woman who you believe has helped shape the legal profession since the Sex Disqualification (Removal) Act 1919 allowed women to become lawyers?
Madge Easton Anderson. The first woman to be admitted into the legal profession in Scotland following the Sex Disqualification (Removal) Act 1919. Despite the many obstacles that she faced in order to become admitted, she led the way for future female solicitors and started her own legal practice with two other women in 1931, also becoming the first legal firm to be run by women.
On the week of International Women’s Day, what is the most important message you want to send out to young women thinking about their a career in law?
- Be confident in your own abilities.
- Those who shout the loudest don’t necessarily have the right answers – be brave enough to question them.
- Be willing and open to learning and taking criticism, but don’t be afraid to stand your ground if you know you are right.
Which woman (or women) do you admire the most?
A slight cliché – my mum. By watching her, I know that you can work full time, have a family and most importantly enjoy life, just as long as you don’t sweat the small stuff.
What has been your proudest moment in your career so far?
My first purchase of a Development Site after I qualified as a solicitor. Helping to take my clients from their initial instructions to purchase a site all the way through to selling finished houses on that site and knowing all of the different plates that had to be balanced along the way to get to that final point.