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  • Tuesday, September 22, 2020 5:55 PM | Meredith Farrell (Administrator)
    Icon. Firebrand. Champion. Ruth Bader Ginsburg was all of these and more. Justice Ginsburg served 27 years on the United States Supreme Court, until her passing yesterday, September 18, 2020. The NHWBA mourns the loss of such a legal titan and stalwart advocate for equality.

    Despite graduating first in her class at Columbia Law in 1959, Justice Ginsburg had a hard time finding work after graduation because: 1) she was a mother; and 2) she was a woman.

    In 1965, Justice Ginsburg wore her mother-in-law’s clothing to her job as a professor at Rutgers Law, for fear of not having her contract renewed while she was pregnant with her second child.

    Justice Ginsburg worked tirelessly to advance women’s rights. In 1970, she co-founded The Women’s Rights Law Reporter, the first law journal in the United States to focus exclusively on women’s rights. In 1972, she co-founded the ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project. Between 1973 and 1976, she argued six gender discrimination cases before SCOTUS, winning five of them. Justice Ginsburg carved a significant path for women through her Equal Protection Clause arguments. These efforts had the effect of discouraging lawmakers from treating men and women differently under the law.

    In 1993, President Clinton nominated Justice Ginsburg to the United States Supreme Court. She was the second woman, after Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, to serve on the Court.

    Justice Ginsburg believed that the law was gender-blind. The 87-year old justice is quoted as having said, “I ask no favor for my sex. All I ask of our brethren is that they take their feet off our necks.”

    In 2015, Justice Ginsburg said that she was sometimes asked when there would be enough women on SCOTUS. Her response: “When there are nine.” She explained that this shocked people, “but there’d been nine men, and nobody’s ever raised a question about that.”

    We will remember you, Justice Ginsburg, as someone who used her substantial talents to do her work to the best of her ability. You paved the way for all of us.

    RIP, RBG.

  • Monday, September 14, 2020 10:22 PM | Meredith Farrell (Administrator)

    In July, the American Bar Association released a formal opinion regarding Model Rule 8.4(g) which prohibits a lawyer from engaging in conduct that the lawyer knows or reasonably should know is harassment or discrimination on the basis of various categories, including race, sex, religion, national origin, and sexual orientation. The full opinion can be found at https://www.americanbar.org/content/dam/aba/administrative/professional_responsibility/aba-formal-opinion-493.pdf

  • Tuesday, June 16, 2020 3:05 PM | Anonymous

    The New Hampshire Women’s Bar Association (NHWBA) condemns the recent murders of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, Rayshard Brooks, and others at the hands of systemic racial injustice that pervades our country and communities. Racism, intolerance, oppression, and hate have no place in our society, and we cannot stand silent. Gender equity does not exist in a vacuum – it goes hand in hand with racial equity, and we must stand as effective allies with the Black men, women, and children who are affected by such racism, intolerance, oppression, and hate.

    We must say their names as we renew our commitment to advocate for equity, diversity, and inclusion in the legal profession and beyond:

    Their lives matter. As attorneys, we have certain privilege and obligation to speak up and fight for those who cannot, which includes those who are suffering at the hands of inequity and injustice. We must work together to become stronger allies for our colleagues, friends, and neighbors who are marginalized, and to use our voices to fight against racial inequity not only in the legal profession, but in all aspects of our society. We must call out racism for what it is when it happens, and continue to strive for human rights regardless of skin color and equal justice under the law.

    We urge you to join us in a call to action for the New Hampshire legal community to use our resources, skills, and time to make change and to be anti-racist. Here are a few resources to get you started:

    Educate: Watch, read, and listen…

    Ms. JD Virtual Toolkit: Allyship in the Legal Profession: In this webinar, you are invited to learn about what allyship means and how to be an ally for Black people in the legal profession from Ms. JD Co-Founder Jessie Kornberg in conversation with Ms. JD Board Chair Maleaha Brown.

    How to be an Antiracist, with Ibram X. Kendi



    Advocate and Donate

    National Organizations:

    New Hampshire Organizations:

    In solidarity,

    The New Hampshire Women’s Bar Association Board of Directors

    Image Credit: BabyNames.com

  • Tuesday, April 21, 2020 1:52 PM | Anonymous

    How are you, really?

    We know our members are all facing new challenges during this confusing time, and we want to learn how you would like us to help.

    Please fill out this short survey by April 29th letting us know how you're doing and your ideas for how we can support you.

    And if you haven't had a chance yet, please check out the COVID-19 resources page on our website.

    Thank you and stay safe!

  • Monday, March 23, 2020 5:02 PM | Anonymous

    Photo by Fusion Medical Animation on UnsplashThe New Hampshire Women’s Bar Association has pulled together a list of resources for our community members, both lawyer and non-lawyer, with a focus on providing information for small business owners, such as solo practitioners and small firm members, who may be disparately impacted by the effects of COVID-19.

    Information on the spread of COVID-19 and what you should do to limit exposure or if you exhibit symptoms

    Information regarding the New Hampshire state government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including executive orders, and the New Hampshire federal and state court system updates

    Resources for attorneys, employees, and business owners

    Resources for Taking Care of Yourself and Your Family

  • Sunday, March 15, 2020 6:42 PM | Anonymous

    We've made the decision to cancel our upcoming book club meetings in an effort to practice social distancing.

    While you're cooped up at home, you can read our next couple of picks so you'll be ready for when we resume this monthly event. Here are the next two books:

    If you'd like to join to email distribution list so you'll hear first about when our next book club meeting will be held, please email Caroline Leonard. Happy reading!

  • Monday, June 03, 2019 8:56 PM | Anonymous

    Now Accepting Ricker Award Nominations 

    Since 2000, the Marilla M. Ricker Achievement Award has been presented annually at NHWBA's Fall Reception. Its recipients are women lawyers who have achieved professional excellence, and paved the way to success for other women lawyers, or advanced opportunities for women in the legal profession, and/or performed exemplary public service on behalf of women.

    You can learn more about Marilla M. Ricker, a woman of many New Hampshire legal firsts, here.

    Nominations for the 2019 Ricker Award will be accepted through June 28, 2019. Learn more about how to nominate a woman lawyer at our website.


    NHWBA Fights Discrimination in NH Bar

    NHWBA submitted final comments to the New Hampshire Supreme Court on Proposed Rule of Professional Conduct 8.4(g). Click here to view them.

    Thank you to all our members and friends who have worked on this important issue over the last several months, and especially to those who recently submitted comments themselves.

    We are hoping for an outcome that will appropriately address the endemic issue of harassment and discrimination in the profession.


    NHWBA Members in the Media 

    NHWBA member Donna Brown (right) of Wadleigh, Starr & Peters was recently featured in a New Hampshire Public Radio article called "Some Say Untapped Workers Are Plentiful, Could Help Ease N.H.'s Labor Shortage" and was also on The Exchange.

    Sustaining member Professor Lucy Hodder, Director of Health Law and Policy at the UNH Law's Institute for Health Policy and Practice, was also recently on NHPR's The Exchange to discuss Hospital Mergers In New Hampshire.

    And NHWBA member Jacqueline Botchman of McLane Middleton, was recently published in the NH Business Review with an article entitled, "Court’s LGBTQ ruling awaited: Will Title VII civil rights protect the community from discrimination?"

    Attorney Hanisco on Board of Governors

    NHWBA member, Attorney Christine M. Hanisco of The Stein Law Firm, PLLC was recently appointed to the New Hampshire Bar Association's Board of Governors. She concentrates her practice on the areas of criminal law, family law, surrogacy law, and adoption.

    She will serve in a Governor At Large seat. Congratulations, Chrissy! 

    Golf Clinic

    NHWBA's golf clinic is perfect for true beginners or golfers who are looking to improve their game. The clinic is a series of four 1-hour private lessons conducted in a group of no more than 12 participants. Golf Pro Steve Poremba of Derryfield Country Club in Manchester will be our instructor.

    The lessons will take place on four consecutive Tuesday evenings starting on Tuesday, June 4 at 6:00 p.m.

    Registration is $125 for NHWBA members and $150 for non-members, which includes rental of golf clubs.

    Contact Kat Hedges by email or at 603-668-2222 with any questions.

    Teleconference: Mentoring Millennial Women

    Mentoring is at risk of becoming a lost art. At a time when Facebook groups, Slack channels, and alternative means of networking, guidance, and education are on the rise, it's critical to remain relevant to the newest generation of female attorneys, not only to provide support and much-needed resources to budding practitioners, but also to develop future female leaders who will pass the torch to the next generation.

    Join by phone on June 10 at 4pm to hear practical tips to enhance your mentorship skills. Register today.

    LawLine Volunteer Night

    We're volunteering with LawLine, the New Hampshire Bar Association's free telephone legal advice service.

    Join us at Bernstein Shur in Manchester on Wednesday, June 12th from 5:30 - 8pm to eat pizza and answer the public's legal questions by phone. Please sign up here.

    LawLine can be reached at (800) 868-1212 from 6-8pm on the second Wednesday of each month.

    July Book Club

    We will be meeting over dinner (pay your own way) at Republic in Manchester on Wednesday, July 10th at 5:30pm to discuss The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin. This book is the result of Ms. Rubin’s one-year study of her happiness. It has been on the best seller list for two years and is 368 pages long.

    Please email Caroline Leonard to Caroline Leonard if you are interested.

    Check out our Facebook event and invite your friends. Hope to see you there!

    Legal Network for Gender Equity

    You can help people facing sex discriminatio - including sex harassment - at work, in school, and in health care: Join the Legal Network for Gender Equity.

    The Legal Network for Gender Equity is free to join and connects those facing sex discrimination with legal assistance. Attorneys in the Legal Network for Gender Equity agree to give a free initial consultation to individuals coming through the Legal Network. Some attorneys also provide lower rates or pro bono assistance. The Legal Network also offers legal trainings on sex discrimination and harassment and other resources. Click here to learn more.

  • Monday, May 20, 2019 9:09 AM | Anonymous

    As you know, the NHWBA has been outspoken in its advocacy for the implementation of Proposed Rule of Professional Conduct 8.4(g), and the NHWBA strongly supported the most recent iteration of that Proposed Rule’s language pending before the New Hampshire Supreme Court. During the hearing on April 12, 2019, NHWBA members bravely shared their experiences in person and in writing. The NHWBA also submitted written comments to the Court, which you can view here.

    Now, your voices are needed once again. Today, the New Hampshire Supreme Court issued an Order, proposing the adoption of another version of the Proposed Rule and an amendment to current Rule of Professional Conduct 4.4(a). The Court’s Order may be reviewed here. The NHWBA is still analyzing the proposed language, but it appears to fall short of an adequate solution to the endemic issue of harassment and discrimination in our profession. The NHWBA will be submitting comments to the Court on the latest iteration of Rules 8.4(g) and 4.4. Harassment and discrimination are barriers in our profession that we must lead the way in removing. Please join us in doing the same before the May 31st deadline.

    To submit comments, file with the clerk of the Court or send an e-mail to rulescomment@courts.state.nh.us.

    If you have any questions about the NHWBA’s position or about submitting written comments to the Court, please do not hesitate to contact Christina A. Ferrari, NHWBA President, who may be reached at cferrari@bernsteinshur.com or (603) 665-8827.

  • Tuesday, May 07, 2019 9:19 PM | Anonymous

    For more information, contact:

    Jillian Andrews Dubois

    Executive Director



    For Immediate Release:

    The New Hampshire Women’s Bar Association to Hold SHERO Celebration Honoring Granite State Women Lawyers

    In celebration of its 20th Anniversary in May 2018, the New Hampshire Women’s Bar Association (“NHWBA”) unveiled its SHERO Campaign to honor the women heroes of our members and friends.

    Over the last year, a total of 70 SHERO honorees, women who are admired and serve as role models, have been nominated by their peers and colleagues with a donation in their name to the NHWBA. The nominees include both young and veteran attorneys, and those who work as solo practitioners, at large firms, and in the public sector. Judges, professors, and entrepreneurs are among those who have been chosen by their fellow attorneys.

    Now, NHWBA is planning to celebrate these women. A SHERO Celebration will be held on Wednesday, May 15th at 6:00 p.m. at LaBelle Winery in Amherst, N.H. The evening will feature entertainment by New York City-based stand-up comedian, writer, TV personality, and podcaster Kath Barbadoro.

    Of the event, NHWBA Board President Attorney Christina A. Ferrari said, “We all know the importance of empowering women, but studies have shown that it does not happen through overt acts as much as it should. We are going to change that!”

    Distinguished attorneys and members of the judiciary from across the Granite State are already planning to attend this historic event. Tickets may be purchased online at www.NHWBA.org.

    NHWBA is grateful to the sponsors who help make events like this possible, including Champion level sponsor Abramson, Brown & Dugan and Benefactor level sponsors Bernstein Shur and McLane Middleton.



    Below is a full list of the SHERO honorees:


    The New Hampshire Women’s Bar Association is a statewide bar association founded to promote and support the advancement and interests of women in the legal community through leadership, professional interaction, education and the exchange of ideas between its members and the community. For more information about the NHWBA, go to www.nhwba.org.

  • Monday, April 01, 2019 3:55 PM | Anonymous

    I promise to not flood your email inbox with direct messages from me, but there are two events coming up over the next two weeks that are too important to ignore, and I humbly ask for your help with both of them!  These events focus on the issues of harassment, discrimination, and retaliation in our legal profession, which impact us all even if you have not personally experienced such issues.

    First, I urge you to attend the upcoming Promoting Equality in the Legal Profession Training, which will be held this Thursday, April 4th at 8:30 AM at the Jefferson Collaborative Auditorium, Jefferson Mill Building, Ground Floor, 670 N. Commercial Street in Manchester.  Bagels, pastries, fruit, and coffee will be provided, courtesy of Bernstein Shur.

    This free program will not only inform you about the current state of federal and state law regarding the issues of harassment, discrimination, and retaliation in the workplace, but most importantly, it will give you tools to use to combat harassment, discrimination, and retaliation that you may face.  You can also bring these tools back to your workplace and use them as best practices within your organization.

    Please join us if you can and bring at least one friend or colleague with you – regardless of where you work and what type of work you do, these are important topics and engaging in this training will help continue the necessary conversation around these issues, lead to more awareness of the fact that harassment, discrimination, and retaliation persist in the legal profession, including here in New Hampshire, and will help us all take steps to spark change.

    Please click here to sign up to attend.  Let’s fill the room!

    Second, on April 12, 2019 at 10 AM at the New Hampshire Supreme Court, the Court will hold a public hearing on Proposed Rule of Professional Conduct 8.4(g), which, as it now stands in terms of language, the NHWBA enthusiastically supports.  Here is the current iteration of the proposed language, which is what the Court will hear next week:

    (g) engage in conduct while acting as a lawyer in any context that that the lawyer knew or reasonably should have known is harassment or discrimination on the basis of race, sex, religion, national origin, ethnicity, physical or mental disability, age, sexual orientation, marital status, or gender identity.  Statutory or regulatory exemptions, based upon the number of personnel in a law firm, shall not relieve a lawyer of the requirement to comply with this Rule.  This paragraph shall not limit the ability of the lawyer to accept, decline, or withdraw from representation consistent with other Rules, nor does it infringe on any Constitutional right of a lawyer, including advocacy on matters of public policy, the exercise of religion, or a lawyer’s right to advocate for a client.”

    On September 7, 2018, the Advisory Committee on Rules voted 12-3 to recommend that the Court amend Rule of Professional Conduct 8.4 by adopting this language.  A copy of the Court’s Order may be found here.

    It is critical that we fill the room with supporters at this hearing and make our voices heard! If you can attend in person, please do so and bring others with you.

    We are told that each individual will have 5 minutes to speak, and I encourage you to take the opportunity to explain to the Court the importance of this Proposed Rule, any personal experiences you have had where a Rule like this one would have been helpful, and that you are in support of the Court’s adoption of the Rule without further revision.

    I plan to speak on behalf of the NHWBA, and I would be happy to discuss with you any proposed comments, if you would like.  I am also happy to answer any questions that you may have about the Proposed Rule and the NHWBA’s position on it to date.  I can be reached by email or at (603) 665-8827 (direct line).  Please contact me at any time.

    If you are unable to attend in person, you can still speak out in support of this Proposed Rule!  Written testimony and comments will be reviewed by the Court and may be submitted via e-mail

    I am also happy to bring with me on April 12th any written testimony and comments that you would like to submit, and to submit them in person on your behalf.  If you are interested in this option, please contact me.

    As always, THANK YOU to each and every one of you for all that you do to support the NHWBA and the continued advancement of women in the legal profession. 

    Hope to see you on April 4th and 12th!

    Very truly yours,


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New Hampshire Women's Bar Association
P.O. Box 915
Manchester, NH 03105