Moving. Uplifting. Thought-provoking. Galvanizing.
Those were the words used to describe the remarks by this year's Kate Stoneman Award recipients: New York Solicitor General Barbara Underwood, Patricia E. Salkin '88, and Kelley Ross Brown '91, who were honored April 30 at Albany Law School's 25th Anniversary Kate Stoneman Day for their work in seeking change and expanding opportunities for women within the legal profession. The awards were presented in honor of Kate Stoneman, the first woman admitted to practice law in New York State and the first woman to graduate from Albany Law School.
For those in attendance, the message was clear: though opportunities for women in law are much greater today than 150, 75, 30, or even 15 years ago, there is still work to be done.
Alternating humor, wit, and sagacity, Solicitor General Underwood—the Stoneman Day keynote speaker and Miriam M. Netter '72 Stoneman Award recipient—spoke of her experiences as an up-and-coming lawyer and academic to underscore that point.
Once, she was asked her feelings about "dirty jokes" by a member of a clerkship screening committee at the U.S. Supreme Court. Then, after joining a prestigious law school where she was one of the first women on the faculty, she was charged with starting "a bathroom revolution." In reality, her intentions were far more ordinary. She planned to use the restroom—and notified her colleagues as such—because there was no suitable alternative nearby.