Tuesday, March 30, 2010
ABA Women Lawyers to Honor Judge McKeown
By a MetNews Staff Writer
Judge M. Margaret McKeown of the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has been selected to receive the Margaret Brent Women Lawyers of Achievement Award from the American Bar Association’s Commission on Women in the Profession, the court announced yesterday.
The award is named after the first woman lawyer in America, Margaret Brent, and is given to women in the law whose achievements have made them role models for future generations of women lawyers, according to a release from the court.
McKeown, 58, said it was “an honor” to be selected as a recipient and “humbling to be among the women considered to be trailblazers in the profession.”
She advised young female lawyers starting out on their careers to “[f]ind a mentor, pursue your passion within the law, and if you want to be a trial lawyer or litigator, find a way to be in court as often as possible.”
The judge was appointed to her post by then-President Bill Clinton in 1998, and has since sat on hundreds of appellate panels and authored more than 300 opinions. She is actively involved in court governance, serving on various committees at the circuit and national levels, including chairing the Codes of Conduct Committee of the Judicial Conference of the United States, the court said.
Prior to becoming a judge, McKeown was a White House fellow and worked as a special assistant to the secretary of the interior. She spent some time in private practice in Seattle, where she became the first woman partner at the law firm of Perkins Coie LLP, founded the firm’s intellectual property practice and was the first woman to serve as a managing director on its executive committee.
McKeown was the founder and first co-president of the Washington Women Lawyers. She was the first woman lawyer to represent the Western District of Washington at the Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference.
She also served as the first woman president of the Federal Bar Association for the Western District of Washington, and was a member of the Ninth Circuit Gender Bias Task Force, the first federal gender-bias task force to be established.
The Brent awards will be presented during a ceremony on August 8, 2010, at the ABA’s annual meeting in San Francisco. Other 2010 winners are Brooksley E. Born of Washington, D.C., Elizabeth J. Cabraser of San Francisco, Willie Stevenson Glanton of Des Moines, Iowa, and Laura Stein of Oakland.
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