Meet The Rainmaker - Amy W. Schulman
by Rachelle J. Canter, Ph.D.
Presented by the Women Rainmakers
September, 2004
Name: Amy W. Schulman
Title: Partner
Firm Name: DLA Piper Rudnick Gray Cary
Practice Area: Large-scale Litigation
Nominated By: Elizabeth K. Bransdorfer
Biggest influence or mentor:
(1) My grandfather was a Federal judge and was passionate about his work, so it was never drudgery for him. I feel the same way. I still spend a lot of time thinking about the kind of lawyer I want to be, using my grandfather's approach as a model. This type of self-reflection is especially important for women to do.
(2) I've had lots of mentors. Being successful requires you to draw information, both positive and negative, from lots of people you encounter.
Most important lesson learned:
Not to be afraid to pick yourself up when you do something wrong and do it again, do it better, do it differently. When you drive to be perfect and yet recognize that no one is, it's important to be open to learning from your mistakes. I've had to learn that consciously. Many women are paralyzed because we are afraid to make a mistake.
Proudest accomplishment:
Building an interesting, rewarding practice with a cadre of wonderful, talented lawyers whom I've hired and trained. I have the practice I do because we function as a team.
Goal yet to be achieved:
(1) To implement, on a larger scale, my ideas about the central role alternative resolution strategies can play in litigation.
(2) To have the tremendous satisfaction of seeing lawyers I work with be in my position in 10 years.
If you were starting out as a lawyer today, what would you do differently:
I wouldn't do a single thing differently - I'm so happy about where I am.
Best career advice for young women lawyers:
Take yourself seriously, don't be afraid, work hard, and find your own voice.
Percentage of time devoted to marketing:
I never think of myself as "marketing."
Rainmaking tip:
I don't have a secret that I'm not sharing. My rainmaking success comes from two things: my conviction that I can be really helpful to clients and my ability to offer them a valuable service. Rainmaking sounds like you're selling something. What you have to want is not business, but what the business represents: to help clients with something they need done and can't do without you, or at least, not as easily. Concentrate on becoming the best lawyer you can be in your field.
Rainmaking advice for young women lawyers:
There's no right style of rainmaking - find your own voice.
List words that best describe you:
Intense, thoughtful, optimistic, curious, relentless, energetic.
You really love what you do. Why?
For me, it was never an option not to love what I do, because work is so much of what gives life meaning. Being a rainmaker is just shorthand for being good at what you do and having a number of clients who recognize that. You don't get there unless you are wholeheartedly, passionately committed to what you do.
Interview by Rachelle J. Canter, Ph.D.
LPM Women Rainmakers is a national forum enabling women to network and develop business opportunities. By understanding how to develop business, women can exert greater control over their careers and integrate their personal lives successfully with the practice of law. For more information on LPM Women Rainmakers, visit .
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