Photo courtesy of James Elam.

Sheryl Axelrod’s Yolanda Coly Advocacy Award Acceptance Speech

Firm President Sheryl Axelrod was honored with the National Association of Minority and Women Owned Law Firms (NAMWOLF) 2017 Yolanda Coly Advocacy Award. Yolanda Coly herself nominated Sheryl, as did two NAMWOLF Board of Directors members, Jamie Rudman, who presented Sheryl with the award, and John Murdock.

The Yolanda Coly Advocacy Award recognizes a person of influence with wide ranging professional connections who, through stellar advocacy, profoundly advanced NAMWOLF’s mission. Sheryl was recognized for her career-long championing of equality, diversity, and inclusion. See her biography in the space here.

Sheryl continues to serve as Co-Chair of the NAMWOLF Advocacy Committee and to speak about the disenfranchisement of women and minorities, unconscious bias, the profitability of diversity, and tools companies and each of us can use to become diversity champions. Watch Sheryl’s courageous award acceptance speech below, for which she was given an extended standing ovation.

Sheryl Axelrod would like to personally thank her nominators, Yolanda Coly, Jamie Rudman, and John Murdock, her colleagues at The Axelrod Firm who inspire her – Lisa Savitt, Vanessa Snyder, Kelly Walker, Matthew Gomez, Alexis Lightner and each of her mentees that wrote supporting letters (referred to by Jamie Rudman in her introduction):

Antinuke (Tinu) Osinupebi
Charece Collins
Courtenay Dunn
Erin Keltz
Kari Knight Stevens
Linda Alle-Murphy
Neelima (Neelu) Vanguri
Samuel Mukiibi
Scott Sigman
Melissa Pang and
Dan Oberdick

A few corrections:

(1) Sheryl served on the American Bar Association’s Task Force on Gender Equity until it was absorbed by the ABA Commission on Women in the Profession. In the year she was appointed by the President of the American Bar Association to what was commonly called the Gender Equity Task Force (GETF), she was one of only three people in the country to have been given a seat on it. As a result of presidential appointments the year before, there was a larger group of attorneys who formed the GETF and our Advisory Committee. We invite you to peruse the GETF’s top notch publications and resources, and to put them to use to move the needle forward for women in the profession.

(2) The student to which Jamie Rudman referred is a woman, Josie Hyman, who was not only a superstar advocate on the Overbrook High School Mock Trial Team, but went to Temple Law School and coached the Overbrook High School Mock Trial Team to victory in the Regional Championships.

Firm President Sheryl Axelrod Addresses the Crowd at First-of-Its-Kind Diversity Networking Event

On November 15, 2016, Firm President Sheryl Axelrod spearheaded a first-of-its-kind networking event for all members of the Philadelphia Bar Association, Pennsylvania Bar Association, and Philadelphia-area affinity bars. Hosted by Morgan Lewis, this unprecedented event united diversity groups from across the Philadelphia area, providing a welcoming environment for attendees to network in support of diversity. Guests were treated to delicious hors d’oeuvres and a speech by Sheryl Axelrod on the importance of gender and minority inclusion. Watch portions of Sheryl Axelrod’s speech below and click here to see photos from the event.





Firm President Sheryl Axelrod receiving the TLAA Women’s Champion Award from Ken Spivack on June 8, 2015

On June 8, 2015 Firm President Sheryl Axelrod was awarded the Temple Law Alumni Association Women’s Champion Award.

Established by Sheryl Axelrod in 2012 during her two-year term as President of the Temple Law Alumni Association (TLAA), the TLAA Women’s Champion Award honors lawyers who have dedicated their careers to fighting for gender equality. Two years after Sheryl finished her term as TLAA President, she was bestowed the TLAA 2015 Women’s Champion Award.

Sheryl was recognized for her work in founding the TLAA Women’s Initiative, her writing and public championing of women’s equality, her mentorship of junior women in the profession, and her work launching programming to advance women lawyers.

Bringing NAMWOLF In-House: How to Build Culture & Programs to Increase the Use of NAMWOLF Law Firm Members

In September 2016, Firm President Sheryl Axelrod co-moderated the panel, “Bringing NAMWOLF In-House: How to Build Culture & Programs to Increase the Use of NAMWOLF Law Firm Members,” with Jerry Alcazar of Blackwell Burke. The panelists who provided in-house counsel best practices for utilizing NAMWOLF to hire top notch minority and women owned law firms were:

● Mike Cammarota, Managing Director & Senior Director of Legal Services, Global Transactions for Accenture
● Raven Moore, Senior Litigation Counsel for McDonald’s Corporation
● Barry Parsons, Associate General Counsel for Freddie Mac
● Barbara Stevens, Vice President & Corporate Counsel for Prudential Financial
● Melford “Mel” Walker, Senior Counsel for Wells Fargo & Company

The panel began with a discussion of how each of the panelists’ companies used NAMWOLF to improve its diverse hiring and inclusivity programs.










DISCUSSING THE PROFITABILITY OF DIVERSITY AND TOOLS WE CAN ALL — USE TO COMBAT UNCONSCIOUS BIAS AND BECOME DIVERSITY CHAMPIONS

Battling Bias Pays

This clip is from a presentation Firm President Sheryl L. Axelrod put on before the American Bar Association. Sheryl was flown to San Diego to present on the disenfranchisement of women and minorities, the profitability of diversity, and tools everyone can use to combat unconscious bias and become diversity champions as discussed more fully in the article, “Video highlights: Expert makes business case for diverse workplace during Midyear Meeting 2016.”

SHERYL L. AXELROD’S REMARKS ALONG WITH THOSE OF HER FELLOW PANELISTS AT COUNCILWOMAN BLONDELL REYNOLDS BROWN’S ‘LEADERSHIP 101: NEGOTIATING SALARY: TACTICS FOR BETTER COMPENSATION’ ON PHILLYCAM ON NOVEMBER 19, 2014.

EXPLAINING THE APPELLATE PROCESS TO THE PUBLIC: AT THE SUPERIOR COURT’S REQUEST, SHERYL AXELROD SPEAKS ON TELEVISION

03/02/2004

Video footage of Ms. Axelrod’s Channel PCN television appearance as a leading speaker on the Superior Court of Pennsylvania program entitled “Pennsylvania Appellate Practice”.