Women's Impact Network for Success
Developing Opportunities for Women in the Legal Profession
The Duane Morris Women's Impact Network for Success is devoted to the success of our women attorneys. Through various programs, we exchange ideas, foster and expand business contacts and opportunities, and enhance attorney development to fully realize the talent, knowledge and potential of our women attorneys.
Awards & Accolades
Duane Morris has been repeatedly ranked as one of the Best Law Firms for Women by Working Mother, based on the firm's family-friendly policies and business development initiatives that retain women and advance them into the leadership pipeline. The firm also has been recognized twice by the San Francisco Gender Equality Principles Initiative, a public-private collaborative that aims to help organizations achieve greater gender equality. In 2015, Yale Law Women ranked Duane Morris among its Top Ten Family Friendly Firms and, in 2014, The American Lawyer's Women Partner Watch Honor Roll recognized Duane Morris as one of only 20 law firms among the Am Law 200 whose new partner classes were at least 30 percent women in each of the previous three years. The Philadelphia Business Journal/Forum of Executive Women chose Duane Morris as the global company recipient of the 2015 Advancing Women Company Award and the Career Contessa website listed Duane Morris as one of the top five companies in Philadelphia with best perks for women based on the firm’s promotion of career growth and family. Crain’s Chicago Business named Duane Morris a 2016 "Best Place to Work for Women Over 35." In addition, Duane Morris was listed for five consecutive years on the Honor Roll of Legal Organizations Welcoming Women Professionals by the Pennsylvania Bar Association Commission on Women in the Profession. Duane Morris's mentoring and networking programs for women attorneys have also been cited by Law360, Women 3.0 magazine, Philadelphia magazine and others.
Many of our attorneys have also been honored, including:
Manita Rawat has been appointed managing partner of the firm’s Silicon Valley office. Ms. Rawat practices primarily in the area of intellectual property law and litigation. She has a strong technical background in applied mathematics with a concentration in computer science, aerospace engineering and statistical analysis, as well as biochemistry. She is a 2015 Fellow of the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity. This landmark program identifies, trains and advances the next generation of leaders in the legal profession. Ms. Rawat was also named a recipient of the 2016 National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) “Best Under 40” Award. This award recognizes individuals within the Asian Pacific American legal community under the age of 40 who have achieved prominence and distinction in their fields of endeavor.
Rosanne Ciambrone, partner in the Chicago office, has been named to Crain’s Custom Media list of Chicago’s Notable Women Lawyers 2018. Recipients were nominated by colleagues and represent the women lawyers in Chicago who have made significant contributions to their industry over the last year. Nominees were selected for their ability to effect change in their role and area of practice, mentorship to other women attorneys and leadership roles outside of the candidates’ own organizations. Ms. Ciambrone practices in the area of business reorganization, financial restructuring, bankruptcy law and commercial litigation. She represents both borrowers and lenders in all facets of bankruptcy as well as in and out-of-court restructurings. She is a member of the International Women’s Insolvency Restructuring Confederation, the Justinian Society and the National Association of Women Lawyers.
Chicago partner Patricia S. Hofstra has been named to Crain’s Custom Media list of Chicago’s Notable Women Lawyers 2018. Recipients were nominated by colleagues and represent the women lawyers in Chicago who have made significant contributions to their industry over the last year. Nominees were selected for their ability to effect change in their role and area of practice, mentorship to other women attorneys and leadership roles outside of the candidates’ own organizations. Ms. Hofstra represents a broad range of healthcare clients, helping them with day-to-day legal issues, including corporate matters, mergers, transactions and regulatory compliance. She has mentored women healthcare attorneys through the Illinois Association of Healthcare Attorneys, an organization she has been active with for over 30 years and is a past president.
Lisa T. Scruggs, partner in the Chicago office, has been named to Crain’s Custom Media list of Chicago’s Notable Women Lawyers 2018. Recipients were nominated by colleagues and represent the women lawyers in Chicago who have made significant contributions to their industry over the last year. Nominees were selected for their ability to effect change in their role and area of practice, mentorship to other women attorneys and leadership roles outside of the candidates’ own organizations. Ms. Scruggs provides litigation and counseling services for education and school-reform organizations, including individual charter and private schools, charter school networks, charter and education management organizations, school districts and other education nonprofit and for-profit organizations and service providers. She handles a wide range of litigation, transactions and policy matters relating to new school development, teacher evaluation, credentialing and certification reforms, public/private education ventures, virtual education, school finance, and parent and student civil rights.
Cyndie M. Chang, managing partner of the Los Angeles office, has been appointed to the American Bar Association's Commission on Women in the Profession for 2018-2019. Ms. Chang was honored with the Southern California Chinese Lawyers Association’s first-ever Trailblazer Award. In April 2018, she was named one of the most influential minority attorneys by Los Angeles Business Journal. Ms. Chang is a past president of the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA), which represents the interest of more than 50,000 attorneys and over 75 national, state and local bar associations. She has been featured in The American Lawyer, Diversity Journal, Diversity Executive, the Daily Journal and other legal publications.
Eve I. Klein is now chair of Duane Morris’ Employment, Labor, Benefits and Immigration Practice Group. She was also named to Crain’s inaugural list of “Leading Women Lawyers in New York City,” which recognizes women for distinguished careers and exceptional civic and philanthropic activities. Ms. Klein has extensive experience advising clients about their rights and obligations regarding employment laws and regulation, labor relations and collective bargaining issues under the National Labor Relations Act, and litigation.
Nanette Heide, partner in the New York office, was named one of Mergers & Acquisitions magazine’s “Most Influential Women in Mid-Market M&A,” a list profiling women dealmakers with the strongest track records, the biggest footprints and the most promising futures in middle-market finance. Ms. Heide chairs Duane Morris' fashion, retail, luxury and consumer goods industry group. She is a member of the WINS steering committee, as well as the firm’s diversity and inclusion steering committee. She received the Cheryl Bryson Leadership Award from the Duane Morris Women’s Initiative in 2014.
Duane Morris & Selvam special counsel Babita Ambekar has been named as one of the "30 People to Watch in the Business of Law in Asia in 2017" by Asia Law Portal. Ms. Ambekar is head of Duane Morris & Selvam’s India and Japan Practice Groups. She advises multinationals, in an international counsel capacity, on a variety of matters. She is also actively involved in the firm’s Myanmar and Sri Lanka Practice Groups and is the Head of Duane Morris & Selvam's India and Japan Practice Groups.
She serves on the board of ambassadors for the Home for Little Wanderers; the board of directors for the Women’s Bar Association of Massachusetts; and board of overseers for the Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston. In 2016, she was appointed to the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination by Governor Charles D. Baker. Ms. Roberts was also elected to The Women’s Bar Association of Massachusetts (WBA), an organization that works to achieve the full and equal participation of women in every aspect of society.
Partner Beatrice O'Donnell, of the firm’s Philadelphia office, has been appointed to the board of directors of the Forum of Executive Women, a membership organization of 450 women of significant influence across the Greater Philadelphia region. Ms. O’Donnell was also named co-director of the American Bar Association’s (ABA) Section of Litigation Division for the 2016-2017 year, and previously served as the ABA Woman Advocate co-chair and past co-chair of the ABA Mass Torts Committee. Ms. O’Donnell has also received the inaugural Margery reed Professional Excellence Award from the Duane Morris’ Women’s Initiative. The award recognizes contributions toward creating, modeling and mentoring others regarding issues of work-life management. Ms. O’Donnell co-chairs the American Bar Association’s Woman Advocate Committee and was a former co-chair of the Mass Torts Committee from 2009-2012 and in 2009, she was recognized as Outstanding Subcommittee Chair for her work. She is also a two-term past co-chair of the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s Commission on Women in the Profession and serves on the Women’s Initiative Steering Committee.
Arfat Selvam, managing partner of Duane Morris & Selvam in Singapore, served as lead legal counsel to Heineken in its $4.6 billion takeover of Asia Pacific Breweries Ltd. Her instrumental role in this transaction helped Duane Morris & Selvam garner a trio of M&A Deal of the Year awards: the Global M&A Deal of the Year for Southeast Asia in the 2013 American Lawyer Global Legal Awards, as well as the Southeast Asia M&A Deal of the Year and the Singapore M&A Deal of the Year by Asian Law and Business. Previously, Arfat was shortlisted for “Managing Partner of the Year” award in the ALB Southeast Asia Law Awards 2012.
Mark Lipowicz, a trial partner in Philadelphia, was elected president of the board of directors of the Women Against Abuse Legal Center. Lipowicz is a longtime member of the board of directors of Women Against Abuse, which is Pennsylvania’s largest anti-domestic violence agency. Mr. Lipowicz practices in the areas of toxic tort and pharmaceutical defense as well as commercial and class action litigation. A former assistant district attorney in Philadelphia County, specializing in the prosecution of rape cases, and chief counsel to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court Criminal Procedural Rules Committee, his clients over a twenty-plus year career as a civil litigator have ranged from Fortune 10 companies to the National Association of Attorneys General.
The Legal Intelligencer and Pennsylvania Law Weekly have selected Duane Morris’ Sandra G. Stoneman among the 2008 Lawyers on the Fast Track, the future leaders of the state’s legal community. A profile of Stoneman appears here. Ms. Stoneman is co-head of the firm's Life Sciences Practice Group and serves on the Philadelphia Office Inclusion Committee. Ms. Stoneman concentrates her practice in the areas of general corporate, mergers and acquisitions, venture capital and private equity and securities law, representing entrepreneurs, emerging companies, public companies and investors.
Partner Sheila Raftery Wiggins was named one of the New Jersey Law Journal’s 2008 “40 Under 40” based on her professional achievements and demonstrated leadership in the law. Ms. Wiggins is active in several community and civic organizations, including the Supreme Court District V-A Ethics Committee and The Women Advocate Committee of the American Bar Association, and is a New Jersey Court-Appointed Mediator. She served on the Board of Directors of Musical Chairs Chamber Ensemble, a nonprofit corporation that supports classical musicians in the New York metropolitan area.
WINS Steering Committee