Shook Defies Trend for New Female Partners in 2020

Missouri Lawyers Weekly noted Shook as “the one firm that defied the trend” in the publication’s evaluation of new partners added or promoted in Missouri law firms in 2020. In “New Partners 2021: Steady Rate, Strange Year,” the publication reported on the findings of its parent company, Missouri Lawyers Media, in its annual New Partners survey of law firms. Of 44 firms responding for the specified two years from 2019 to 2020, Shook was the only firm that had an increase in female partners, while other firms’ proportion of female partners fell in comparison to the previous survey.

Shook Partner and Chair of the firm’s Women’s Management Council, Micah Hobbs, was quoted on Shook’s accomplishment and the importance of law firms creating policies and making intentional efforts to attract and promote women.

“I think that’s the part that’s challenging for a lot of firms,” Hobbs said. “They have the desire, but putting words on paper and then following up on that, and looking at what’s working and not working and retooling is something we do constantly.”

Most of the women partners reported in the survey were promoted prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, but Hobbs noted that with the pandemic, Shook has also made additional efforts to retain it partners by adding parent-specific programs in place “to touch base and find out what’s going on, and to provide mentoring and moral support for people.”

The New Partners list is based on emailed surveys completed by Missouri law firms, supplemented with information from press releases and announcements about new hires throughout the year. It includes partners promoted or hired in 2020 as well those announced through early February of 2021.