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Professional Advancement of Women

When Armstrong Teasdale partner Tessa Trelz founded our Professional Advancement of Women (PAW) program in 1998, few firms focused resources on helping women lawyers succeed. Tessa’s trailblazing efforts led them to then fashion their programs after PAW.

Today, PAW is among the key contributors to Armstrong Teasdale’s reputation as a good place for women lawyers to establish careers and flourish.

The PAW program’s mission is to create a positive and supportive environment for women lawyers through mentoring, networking and educational opportunities. It also aims to strengthen existing relationships with women clients and prospects as well as forge new relationships between professional and executive women in the community. The program is now led by partner Hillary Schumaker.

In order to carry out its goals, PAW has launched initiatives both at Armstrong Teasdale and in the community. For example, PAW instituted a business development training program at the firm for women junior partners and senior associates that has been expanded to include men. In the community, it was a founder and continues to be a sponsor of the St. Louis Business Journal’s 16th annual “Most Influential Business Women Awards.”

Evidence of PAW’s success can also be found in the leadership roles women now hold at Armstrong Teasdale, including positions on the firm’s management and compensation committees. Lori Bockman, co-chair of Armstrong Teasdale’s public finance practice area, is the firm’s general counsel. The International practice group is headed by Jennifer Schwesig, a Law360 “Rising Legal Star,” and Tessa leads the Corporate Services practice group. In addition, several key staff directors are women.