Susan Smith Blakely Esq.

Founder and Principal
LegalPerspectives LLC

SUSAN SMITH BLAKELY is a lawyer, author and motivational speaker.  She is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin, with distinction, and Georgetown University Law Center.  After 25 years as a private practice attorney with additional experience in the public sector, Ms. Blakely retired as a law firm partner in 2006 to pursue writing, speaking and coaching on topics related to women lawyers through her company LegalPerspectives LLC.  As a practicing lawyer, a public sector chief of staff, and more recently a business entrepreneur, she understands the challenges of both law and business, especially for women.  Her books include: Best Friends at the Bar: What Women Need to Know about a Career in the Law (2009); Best Friends at the Bar:  The New Balance for Today’s Woman Lawyer (2012); and Best Friends at the Bar:  Top-Down Leadership for Women Lawyers (2015), all published by Wolters Kluwer Law & Business/Aspen Publishers.  Ms. Blakely has received the following awards for her work on behalf of women lawyers:  The Lawyers Monthly Women Lawyer 2016 Award; and the Ms. JD Sharing Her Passion Award, 2014.   She has published in leading law publications and media sites, including Corporate Counsel and National Jurist.  Please consult her website at www.bestfriendsatthebar.com for a complete list of her publications and media recognition.  Ms. Blakely speaks on the subjects addressed in her books at undergraduate universities and colleges, law schools, law firms, law organizations, and women’s business groups throughout the country. She also provides individual and group career counseling, and her newest initiative is development of a multi-session program for law firms to supplement Women’s Initiatives and Leadership programs.  Ms. Blakely lives in Virginia outside of Washington, DC with her husband, a partner in a national law firm. Both of their two children also are lawyers.  Ms. Blakely’s perspectives as a lawyer, wife and mother are instructive for professionals regardless of gender.