Sherri Thompson Makes History

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Sandberg Phoenix LAA Sherri Thompson made history last month when she was elected Chair of the Women in the Legal Profession of the Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis (BAMSL). Upon accepting the position, Sherri became the first non-attorney to serve as Chair of a Section for BAMSL. “I’ve been a member of BAMSL since 1995, but looking back, I have to say I didn’t take full advantage of my membership until I joined Sandberg Phoenix & von Gontard in 2014,” Sherri said. “With the firm’s encouragement, I’ve become a member of BAMSL’s Legal Support Committee, LGBTQ Committee, Women in the Legal Profession CLE Committee, and the Women in the Legal Profession (WILP) Section.”

After attending several meetings of the WILP section, Sherri was asked by the incoming chair of the section if she’d be interested in serving as the Secretary of the Section. “I loved it!” Sherri said. “The interaction with members, the meetings, everything about it was interesting and energizing.” At the end of their terms, BAMSL’s section secretaries customarily become Chair-Elect of the section, and then Chair. And while a customary and logical progression, Sherri and other section members realized only lawyers had served as section chairs. After some research into the association’s Executive Director researched BAMSL’s bylaws and found there was no prohibition on non-lawyers serving as section chairs, or by extension, serving on BAMSL’s Board of Governors. “It had never happened before, but the bylaws didn’t forbid it,” Sherri added. “I thought it was an excellent opportunity and that I could bring a different perspective to the role. And I have to say, the support I was given by Sandberg Phoenix members and by BAMSL was absolutely amazing.”

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