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Women at Davis Polk

Recruiting, developing and promoting women lawyers is a key strategic priority for Davis Polk. We have many initiatives in place to help ensure our remarkable women lawyers succeed.

Our Programs

  • Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee: Davis Polk’s Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee develops and assesses policies and initiatives relating to the recruitment, retention and advancement of diverse talent, including our women lawyers.
  • Client Networking Opportunities: We host a variety of client networking events for our women lawyers, from presentations on substantive legal topics, to programs on women’s issues in law and business, to purely social gatherings. Our biennial Alumnae Reception brings back many of our former women lawyers (including those who are now clients) to reconnect with friends and colleagues.
  • DPWomen: DPWomen is one of the firm’s six affinity groups, with active members in New York, Northern California, Washington DC, Europe and Hong Kong. DPWomen is open to both women and men who together explore areas of interest.
  • Davis Polk Parents and the New and Expecting Mothers Group: The Davis Polk Parents affinity group meets often for informal networking and presentations by outside experts. A separate group for lawyers who are new mothers also convenes regularly to share ideas and experiences.
  • Support for Women in Our Community: A significant portion of our award-winning pro bono program is devoted to women in need, including family law and asylum cases on behalf of victims of domestic violence and abuse. The firm and our individual lawyers sponsor or otherwise participate in many women-focused pro bono, community and legal industry organizations through board membership and other advisory roles. For example, the firm is a sponsor of the Women in Law Empowerment Forum, where partners Martine Beamon, Lara Buchwald and Jai Massari are board members.

By the Numbers

  • 48% of our associates and 19% of our partners are women.
  • Our 2020 partner class included 38% women.
  • Our 2020 summer associate class included 52% women.


  • Clients including PepsiCo and TIAA have recognized Davis Polk for our demonstrated commitment to increasing diversity, equity and inclusion in the legal profession.
  • In 2020, the firm was again named a “Gold Standard Firm” by Women in Law Empowerment in recognition of the firm’s commitment to integrating women into leadership positions.

Leaders in Law and Beyond

Women serve in a number of our key governance positions, including Finance Partner, chair of the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion and Recruiting Committees, and primary relationship partner for many of our largest clients.

Davis Polk women go on to do extraordinary things. They can be found in the most senior positions in government and the business world, as well as in an array of leading roles in academia and philanthropy.

Notable examples:

  • U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
  • Congresswoman Terri Sewell (D-AL)
  • Federal Judge Ronnie Abrams
  • Federal Judge Amy St. Eve
  • Magistrate Judge Cheryl L. Pollak
  • General counsel at Fortune 500 companies such as The Estée Lauder Companies, Cigna and NBCUniversal
  • General Counsel at charitable organizations such as Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, Bloomberg Philanthropies and The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
  • Managing directors at many of the world’s largest financial institutions