(CHICAGO) Katten announced today that the National Association for Female Executives (NAFE) named the firm as one of the 2020 NAFE Top Companies for Executive Women, a benchmark for the advancement of women in corporate America.

"Our presence on this list highlights Katten’s understanding of the benefits a diverse team brings. Through the outstanding work of our Women's Leadership Forum and others, we aim to empower all of our attorneys and business professionals to reach their full potential through mentoring, various skills-building opportunities and other initiatives that better equip them for advancement," said Chairman Roger P. Furey.

The list, featured in the April/May issue of Working Mother magazine, recognizes 70 US companies that have a strong focus on best practices that move women to senior ranks, including mentoring, sponsorship, involvement in employee-resource groups, and leadership-development training. The list also highlights company benefits and corporate cultures of accountability for gender-equity results, including the involvement of the CEO and top leaders in advancing women.

"We strive to provide our dynamic women attorneys with plenty of opportunities for career growth," said Katten Chief Diversity Partner Leslie D. Minier. "We are proud of the inclusive culture we have created at Katten that attracts, develops and elevates talented female attorneys, and supports them in their efforts to achieve their goals."

In particular, NAFE highlighted Katten's inaugural Women's Partner Summit in November 2018, where attendees discussed solutions to challenges that can impede their continued success. The summit covered topics such as identifying dedicated mentors, establishing processes for discussion of pay and promotion, and receiving greater transparency and feedback from leaders.

Katten's Women's Leadership Forum (WLF) also works toward the advancement and retention of female attorneys by offering mentoring, skill-building opportunities, external and internal networking, and career development programs. The WLF's national mentoring panel, comprised of senior partners, is another resource for women attorneys to seek advice on topics of concern, whether related to business development or following the path to partnership, navigating interpersonal conflicts, or achieving work-life balance.

"We want to position our female attorneys for success by offering tools and strategies that enable them to assert greater control over their careers and pursue executive positions while strengthening the pipeline for the next generation of firm leaders," said Katten partner Kenya S. Woodruff, national chair of the WLF.

The Top Companies application included more than 200 questions on topics including female representation at all levels, particularly the corporate officer and profit-and-loss leadership ranks. To be considered, companies must have a minimum of two women on their boards of directors, a US-based CEO and at least 1,000 US employees.

“The 2020 NAFE Top Companies continue to tell the story of what organizations are doing to move women into executive positions by communicating the value of P&L roles and ensuring equity in executive succession planning,” said Subha V. Barry, president of Working Mother Media.