(WASHINGTON, DC) Katten announced today that Lori Jacobs has joined the Financial Markets and Funds group in Washington, DC as an associate and the firm's first OnRamp Fellow, returning to the legal profession after taking time off to raise her children.

"We are very excited to welcome Lori to Katten. As a firm, we have long been deeply committed to achieving greater diversity through hiring, promotion and retention efforts here and in the legal industry as a whole," said Katten Chief Talent Officer Melanie Priddy.

"In a competitive market for top talent, we want to ensure we consider all qualified candidates, including those who may have gaps on their resumes, and offer support and flexibility to attorneys and business professionals, particularly parents, in overcoming any hurdles they face to having successful legal careers," Priddy added.

The OnRamp Fellowship, powered by Diversity Lab, is a re-entry platform that matches experienced attorneys returning to the workforce with top firms and law departments. Katten recently partnered as a participant in the program.

The one-year paid fellowship gives participating attorneys an opportunity to demonstrate their value in the marketplace while also increasing their experience, skills and contacts. Fellows, many of whom took a hiatus from practicing law to manage family obligations, also receive career coaching through the program. In late 2021, it was announced that its latest iteration, OnRamp 200, has a goal of returning 200 women attorneys to the legal profession by 2025.

In her role within Katten's Investment Management and Funds practice, Jacobs advises clients in connection with the acquisition and sale of distressed assets, provides transactional support for financial services industry clients, and advises on regulatory issues involving securities laws.

"Before I took time off to raise my family, I specialized in financial market regulation and trading. I'm thrilled to be returning to this area of law, using my experience to help clients capitalize on unique trading opportunities in the syndicated loan market," said Jacobs.

Jacobs most recently practiced law at the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in the Division of Enforcement where she investigated potential violations of federal securities laws. Prior to graduating from Northwestern Pritzker School of Law, Jacobs worked at JPMorgan Securities - Investment Banking Division helping clients in the debt and derivatives markets. Jacobs is admitted in Illinois and pending admission to the DC Bar.

"As a mother of three, I can relate to juggling the demands of work and family. When my children were young, I chose to downshift my career to raise my family. After taking a hiatus, I returned to law and found that Katten offered a path forward, ultimately leading to my elevation to partner," said Wendy Cohen, co-chair of Katten's Investment Management and Funds practice. "The firm's support was invaluable and I am proud, now as a practice leader, to pay it forward and help attorneys like Lori navigate any challenges she and others face in re-entering the legal profession and advancing their careers."