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Q&A with Elizabeth Timme - Division Chair for the Women and the Law Division of the Indianapolis Bar

Q&A with Elizabeth Timme - Division Chair for the Women and the Law Division of the Indianapolis Bar Association
June 19, 2018
Q: Why did you join the Women and the Law Division (WLD) of the Indianapolis Bar Association, and how long have you been involved with the organization?
 
A: I’ve been involved with the WLD since 2013. I initially joined, because I wanted to get more involved in the Indianapolis legal community as a post-law school, Indiana transplant. I stayed and got involved in WLD leadership, because it’s inspiring and fun to be a part of a group of engaged, motivated, smart people working hard (and often under the radar) to create opportunities for other women in our community.
 
Q: What are your responsibilities as WLD chair, and what goals do you have for the organization?
 
A: As chair in 2018, I lead the Women and the Law Division in planning and executing networking events, continuing legal education, mentoring programs and other initiatives that generally provide opportunities for women lawyers in Indianapolis. One of our goals this year has been to provide timely programming on issues affecting women in the workplace that are part of broader national discussions. We’ve planned CLEs and discussion forums on sexual harassment and equal pay, for example. Another of my main goals for the WLD this year and into the future is for the WLD to be a leader in helping women lawyers define, and empowering them to pursue, what success means to them in their careers and lives. We have some events in the works both this year and next that I’m really excited about that are focused on that goal.
 
Q: What are some of the issues facing women lawyers in today’s society, and how does the WLD address and advocate solutions to these issues?
 
A: Of course, the legal profession isn’t immune to the workplace and other issues that impact women in their careers generally, and many of the WLD’s events this year (and every year) are focused on those broad issues—like what it means to “Lean In” or balancing a demanding career with personal or family obligations. But in particular, I think women lawyers’ contributions to the workplace and the profession sometimes go unrecognized, because we tend to be committed team players and not self-promoters. One of the things I like about the WLD is that we go out of our way to shine a light on the contributions of women lawyers in our local community by awarding the Antoinette Dakin Leach Award (named for the first woman granted a license to practice law in Indiana) to a trailblazing woman lawyer each year. We also recently began awarding a mentoring award to a woman who has demonstrated a remarkable commitment to pulling others up along with her.
 
Q: How has the WLD aided in your professional development?
 
A:  The WLD has been a great help in growing my professional network, and it has been an important way for me to receive mentoring from other women lawyers outside my Firm. It’s also been inspiring to see so many of my WLD colleagues over the years developing and advancing in their careers in so many different ways and in so many different facets of the legal profession. It’s great to get to see up close the opportunities women in our community are creating for themselves.
 
Q: Why is diversity and inclusion important in a work environment, specifically in the legal field?
 
A:  I think diversity and inclusion work is important for so many reasons, but one that stands out to me is how it helps frame the questions we ask about how to make positive changes in a workplace or a profession more generally. Diverse perspectives are needed to define what a work environment and success in it should look like, not just how to succeed in the existing framework.
 
Q: Why is it important to be active within legal and community organizations?

A:  If you’re involved in an organization that you’re passionate about, it should be fun. We all have plenty of obligations in our day jobs, so I think being active in a legal or community organization should be about whatever cause you find personally fulfilling.
 
About the WLD
 
The Women and the Law Division of the Indianapolis Bar Association creates networking opportunities for women in the legal profession; provides training and charitable opportunities for members; recognizes outstanding female attorneys who serve as innovators and mentors; and serves as a presence and voice for women attorneys in the community.
 
Click here for a 2018 WLD update from Division Chair Elizabeth Timme.
 
Elizabeth is of counsel in Ice Miller’s Trusts and Estates Group. Her practice focuses on estate planning, business succession planning, estate and trust administration and other matters involving estates and trusts. 
 
This publication is intended for general information purposes only and does not and is not intended to constitute legal advice. The reader should consult with legal counsel to determine how laws or decisions discussed herein apply to the reader's specific circumstances.
 


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