The Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism is pleased to announce that Chief Counsel Mark C. Palmer has been appointed to the American Bar Association’s Commission on Women in the Profession (“Commission”) Advisory Council for upcoming research.
The mission of the Commission is to secure full and equal participation of women in the ABA, the profession, and the justice system. The Commission was created in August 1987 to assess the status of women in the legal profession, identify barriers to advancement, and recommend to the ABA actions to address the problems identified.
In his role on the Advisory Council, Palmer will be part of a 15-member committee supporting forthcoming research on the prevalence and impact of the motherhood penalty and other caregiver biases on the advancement and retention of women lawyers.
“I was honored to be asked to serve on the Advisory Council, which is aimed at achieving long-term and meaningful careers for women in law,” Palmer said. “Women continue to face discriminatory barriers in the professional culture of the law. And while supporting opportunities to recruit more female attorneys is great, many of these women are leaving or being forced out of their legal careers because they don’t feel valued or supported. I’m looking forward to working with my fellow Council members and the ABA on these important advancement and retention challenges.”
Hillary Rodham Clinton, as the first chair of the ABA’s Commission on Women in the Profession, issued a groundbreaking report in 1988 showing that women lawyers were not advancing at a satisfactory rate. From this report, the Commission found that a variety of discriminatory barriers remained a part of the culture, and a reexamination of the attitudes and structures in the legal profession was needed.
Other Commission initiatives include The Grit Project, which educates women lawyers on developing a growth mindset; the Women of Color Initiative, which examines advancement and retention issues among women of color attorneys; and resources for interrupting biases and combatting sexual harassment in the legal profession.
In his role at the Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism, Palmer uses education and outreach to promote professionalism, civility, and integrity in the Illinois legal and judicial systems to provide more equitable, efficient, and effective service to the public.
Palmer serves on the Illinois State Bar Association’s Board of Governors, as Chair of the Public Interest Law Initiative 6th Judicial Circuit Pro Bono Committee, on the Executive Committee of the National Legal Mentoring Consortium, and on the Illinois Supreme Court’s E-Business Policy Board.
Palmer received his undergraduate degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and his law degree from the University of Illinois Chicago School of Law.
About the Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism
The Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism was established by the Illinois Supreme Court in 2005 under Supreme Court Rule 799(c) to foster increased civility, professionalism, and inclusiveness among lawyers and judges in Illinois. By advancing the highest standards of conduct among lawyers and judges, the Commission works to better serve clients and society alike. For more information, please visit 2Civility.org and follow us on Twitter @2CivilityOrg.
Laura Bagby, Communications Director
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