#PressforProgress: Louise Stoupe

Louise Stoupe is a partner in our Tokyo office and co-chair of the firm’s Commercial Litigation and Trial Practice Group. Her practice is focused on intellectual property and international arbitration and litigation. She is a trial lawyer, recognized expert in e-discovery and international IP law, and highly regarded counselor on IP issues to some of the largest technology companies in the world.

What does International Women’s Day mean to you?

International Women’s Day is a fantastic opportunity to recognize that, although it is 2018, we still haven’t achieved gender parity. Success is spending time considering how to solve the problem.

Describe a way that you’ve seen a colleague at MoFo press for progress.

Training was rolled out for all partners on unconscious bias. Step 1 is recognition of the problem. We have done that. MoFo is starting from a great base but is actively working on improving. As a partnership, we are pressing for progress.

What woman most inspires you, and why?

Ethel Benjamin, the first female lawyer in New Zealand. On September 17, 1897, she became the first woman to appear as counsel in court, representing a client for the recovery of a debt.

Ethel was instrumental in getting women the right to vote in New Zealand which she achieved in 1893—way ahead of other established nations. Over one hundred years later, we still have a lot of work to do, but our battles are nothing compared to what Ethel faced.