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In continuation of our Women's History Month feature celebrating women in the legal industry, we are turning to the year 1879. This was the year when President Rutherford B. Hayes signed a law allowing women to become members of the Supreme Court Bar.
This law allowed women to argue and submit cases in front of the Supreme Court. It was promoted by Belva Lockwood, attorney, politician, and author who would go on to become the first woman to argue a case in front of the Supreme court. It was not until 1923 that Florence King would become the first woman to win a case regarding patent law in front of the Supreme Court.
The American Bar Association, founded in 1878, continues to be the leading volunteer legal association today. It took over 40 years before two women would be admitted as members, Judge Mary Belle Grossman of Cleveland, Ohio, and Mary Florence of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. These two women paved the way for all future female members. Today, the percentage of lawyers that are women is roughly 37 %.
Women's History Month at Altman & Associates
This Women's History Month, we are also celebrating the 13th anniversary of Melissa Aitken, who is the Managing Director of the Probate and Estate Administration Practice Area of Altman & Associates Division of Frost Law. Melissa graduated with her law degree from Catholic University and became a member of the Maryland Bar in 1985. Since then, her focus has been solely on estate and trust administration law. A valued colleague, Melissa brings empathy and compassion to the table when meeting with clients who have lost loved ones. As Melissa has said, “Though my job can be technical, I am sensitive to our clients’ grief and always want them to feel supported.” We are incredibly fortunate to have Melissa on our team.