Erika E. Bustos, head of Legal Practice at JP Morgan Chase & Co., talked to Legal Executive Institute about joining the Advisory Board of Transforming Women’s Leadership in the Law (TWLL) and how this initiative is much needed in the legal profession.
Legal Executive Institute: Why did you decide to become an advisory committee member?
Erika E. Bustos: I joined the advisory committee of TWLL because it is a terrific opportunity to influence and drive real change across law firms and general counsel offices.
It has been established that in the legal industry, the odds are stacked against women. There’s extensive research that shows that we face advancement challenges; yet progress towards leveling the playing field has been slow. I believe that TWLL is a call to take action; it’s an opportunity to help women shatter barriers.
TWLL can make a difference — be it great or small — by finding ways to further education, promote business development opportunities, establish effective policies, institute meaningful mentorship programs and increase accountability. As a member of the advisory committee, I’m excited about the opportunity to contribute ideas that can be used to build an effective platform that committed participants can use to learn about strategies that have worked; and then apply them to their institutions.
Legal Executive Institute: What most excites you about this series?
Erika E. Bustos: As a goal-oriented individual, what I find most gratifying about initiatives is to be able to produce and measure results. I’m particularly passionate about this series because it focuses not only on fostering curated-conversations around barriers to women’s advancement, but also on identifying actionable solutions to overcome those barriers. My expectation is that this powerful combination of insightful conversations and pragmatic approach will move us from concepts into action; ultimately, yielding tangible results.
Legal Executive Institute: How do you see your organization benefiting from meeting with law firms and corporations around this topic?
Erika E. Bustos: Exchanging ideas enriches us. It enables us to consider and appreciate other points of view. An open dialog with law firms and other corporations around lessons learned and strategies may influence our institutional programs and approach. I see these conversations as opportunities to learn, explore and improve.