In honor of this year's International Women's Day, the theme is #ChoosetoChallenge. Partner Julia Anne Matheson shares her thoughts with World Intellectual Property Review (WIPR) on what #ChoosetoChallenge means to her and why it is important.

"For me, the theme #ChooseToChallenge has a dual meaning that applies to women in business generally, not merely to women in IP—it is encouragement to question and to stand up against the inherent self-doubt that plagues so many incredibly talented women I know—and nearly none of the men I engage with."

“The high-tech industry, patent bar, and community of patent applicants remains very male-dominated. That means fewer women in leadership positions, fewer networking opportunities, and more obstacles to professional development and business generation.

“After 30 years of practice, I made the decision to leave equity partnership in Big Law in favour of ‘new law’.  While I knew that the decision was the right one for me personally, I struggled with the impact my decision might have on, and the message it might send to, junior women. I have always taken seriously my responsibility to be a mentor to younger women, a support system for women colleagues, and a vocal proponent—in practice and in print—of professional women more generally.” 

Read more of what other female attorneys have to say on the fight for gender equality and what she is doing to bridge the gap. 

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