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WPDC Welcomes Its Newest Partners


Cassels is proud to have had the first firm-sanctioned, organized group on Bay Street for women lawyers: the Women’s Practice Development Committee (WPDC). Our WPDC takes a holistic approach to improving the lives of women lawyers, both professionally and personally.

In January, the WPDC welcomed five new partners – including four associates newly admitted into the partnership (Stefanie Holland, Natasha Jimeno, Jennifer Wasylyk, Adrianna Pilkington) along with Brigeeta Richdale who joined our Vancouver office late last year.

The WPDC offers programs for working mothers, women and wellness, presentation skills, leadership training, gender differences in communication, and business development events for women lawyers and clients. For expectant mothers, the WPDC provides file-transition strategies and reintegration advice for returning to the office and remaining on the partnership track.

In addition to WPDC events and programs, Cassels shows its commitment to women’s initiatives in many ways, including:

  • Leadership: Five of the firm’s Practice Group Chairs and Deputy Chairs are women, four of our seven committees are chaired by women, and four of the eight associates promoted to partner in 2018 were women.
  • 30% Club: As a proud member of the 30% Club, we publicly indicate our support for the notion that it is good business practice to have women holding 30% of board seats and share the aspiration to collectively reach this goal.
  • Justicia Project: We have pledged to support to the Law Society of Upper Canada’s Justicia Project, designed to retain and advance women lawyers in private practice.

In 2016, the Zenith Awards were held in celebration of those who have demonstrated excellence, action and thought leadership in ways that have advanced inclusion and diversity in the legal profession. Two of the firm’s committees were recognized as recipients of these awards, including the Women’s Practice Development Committee.