February 2022 Newsletter

President's Message
It's Black History Month.
This is a time where many of the most influential dream makers and trailblazers in America are honored and recognized for their contributions to the evolution of society.

Below, we highlight just a few of the Black women lawyers who have paved the way in the legal field and reinforce the importance of BWLA's existence; to be a resource and support to advance and increase Black women lawyers in the legal profession in the Greater Chicago area and beyond.
As you know, BWLA serves as a significant resource to minority law students and one of the primary ways we do that is through our signature fundraisers. This month, the BWLA Scholarship Fund Board will host Sips for Scholarships, a fundraiser that encourages donations through a silent auction and individual contributions. We encourage you to join us in-person on Tuesday, February 22nd at Bronzeville Winery for good food, wine, and auction items! You can find more details in the "Upcoming Events" section below. We hope to see you there!

As you reflect on the amazing past accomplishments of Blacks in America this month, I encourage you to recognize and applaud your own current success. After all, we are all changemakers and living beyond our ancestor's wildest dreams!


Nakhia C. Crossley
2021-2022 President
Happy Black History Month!
Since the launch of the first Negro History Week on February 7, 1926, February has marked the time of year when we pay tribute to Black people and significant events in history from the African diaspora.

Black History Month gives us an opportunity to celebrate the adversities, strengths and accomplishments of those trailblazers who came before us, while also taking stock of the challenges that remain, and creating opportunities for change that will lead to a better tomorrow.

To commemorate Black History Month, we've highlighted a few Black women history makers who have personified #BlackGirlMagic in the legal profession:
Honorable Ann Claire Williams
First African-American woman to serve on the U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois and first judge of color to sit on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
Constance Baker Motely
First African-American woman to become a Federal Court judge
Paulette Brown
First African-American woman president of the American Bar Association
Judge Jane Bolin
First African-American woman to serve as a judge in the United States
Loretta Lynch
First African-American woman to serve as the U.S. Attorney General
Ambassador Carol Moseley Braun
First African-American woman elected to the U.S. Senate, the first African-American U.S. Senator from the Democratic Party, and the first female U.S. Senator from Illinois
Violette Neatley Anderson
First African-American woman to practice law before the United States Supreme Court
Upcoming Events
Click here to register!
Click here to register and/or to make a donation!
Contact administrator@bwla.org to donate items to the silent auction.
Click here to register! Contact the Grand Geneva Resort & Spa to reserve your room.
Past Events
BWLA's Whole30 Program Kick Off
On January 10, 2022, BWLA member and certified Whole30 Coach, Alexis Robertson lead a virtual information session on the benefits of the Whole30 program. Members shared their health goals and were encouraged to share recipes and other tips with each other via BWLA's Whole30 Facebook group.

BWLA's Whole30 Program officially launched on January 12th.

To everyone who's participating in the Whole30 Program: You're more than half way there -- you've got this!!!
BWLA Joined the Talk
On Thursday, January 20, 2022, BWLA joined The Decalogue Society of Lawyers in a viewing of the 2012 documentary, More Than a Month. Afterwards, Felicia Simmons-Stoval and BWLA Board Member Shannon Stokes led a discussion about current attempts to fully incorporate Black history into school curricula, and provided insight into the legal challenges and political resistance to those efforts.
Road To The Robe Federal Edition: The Nuts and Bolts of Becoming A Federal Judge
BWLA, along with the Cook County Bar Association, Haitian American Lawyers Association and Region VII of the National Bar Association, hosted this event on Monday, January 24, 2022. Audience members gained invaluable insight from esteemed panelists Judge Ann Claire Williams (Ret.), Judge David Coar (Ret.), Judge Nancy Joseph, and Joseph Drayton, about the journey to the federal bench, in a discussion moderated by BWLA member Natalie Howse.
Join BWLA on GroupMe!!!
Want to know who's attending the next BWLA event? Looking for new employment opportunities or weekend brunch buddy? Join BWLA’s GroupMe to connect and fellowship with other BWLA members!

Click here to join the fun! 
The Judicial Evaluation Committee Needs You!
BWLA's Judicial Evaluation Committee (JEC) is looking for volunteers to represent the organization on upcoming interviews of judicial candidates.

Many thanks to JEC Committee Co-Chairs, LaRufus Mitchell, Demitrus Evans, and Natalie Ellis, for managing the judicial evaluations process.

Click here to volunteer!
BWLA Member Achievements
Congratulations to Dorothy Capers on her new position as Senior Vice President & General Counsel at Xylem!
Congratulations to Kelly V. Carter on her new position as Corporate Counsel at LGIM America!
Congratulations to Shana Jackson on her new position as Assistant Vice President & Senior Counsel at JPMorgan Chase & Company!
Do you or someone you know have an achievement that you'd like us to highlight in our monthly newsletter? We want to celebrate our members! Send your latest achievement addressed to BWLA Corresponding Secretary, Era Laudermilk, at administrator@bwla.org.
Employment Opportunities
BWLA constantly receives new employment opportunities that our members may be interested in. The ever expanding list has become too lengthy to share here, so please be sure to visit the BWLA Job Board to view all current employment opportunities!
Purchase a BWLA T-Shirt TODAY!
BWLA T-shirts are currently available for purchase!!! The T-shirts were designed to celebrate and commemorate our resilience during the pandemic. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to BWLA's Scholarship Fund. T-shirts are $25.00 each and are available in size small - 2XL.

Click here to place your order TODAY!
Thank You To Our Sponsors!!!!