Our Story

In 1978, a group of activist women lawyers met for dinner at Dini's on Tremont Street in Boston. The discussion that night revolved around the concern that no bar association in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts was speaking out on issues affecting women and women lawyers. Equally troubling to these early pioneers was the significant lack of women on the bench, and the failure of any bar association to actively encourage women to serve in the judiciary.

These women were convinced that a bar association that spoke out on behalf of women's issues would garner membership and gain credibility in the legal community. Thus, in the spring of 1978, the Women's Bar Association of Massachusetts was born. Our beginnings were humble. Our "office" was a room in a basement. We stuffed our own envelopes with pages that spilled out of a quirky mimeograph machine, licked all the stamps, and hauled the piles to the nearest mailbox.

Today, several decades later, the WBA & WBF occupy an office suite, not far from where Dini's used to be. The Women's Bar Foundation (WBF) was founded in 1993 to provide free legal assistance to low-income individuals, primarily women and their children, facing critical challenges. The WBA and WBF have a small but mighty staff, including an Executive Director and others devoted to supporting the organizations’ programming, membership outreach, and advocacy efforts.

In addition to our web site, we publish the annual Chronicle magazine. The press regularly consults our leadership on issues of concern to women, and our voices are heard loud and clear on Beacon Hill. Thanks to the initial founders of the organization, our current leadership and members, the WBA is a vibrant organization with a powerful mission.

The Women's Bar Association of Massachusetts is committed to achieving the full and equal participation of women in the legal profession and in a just society.

Our Mission

The Women's Bar Association of Massachusetts (WBA) is where women lawyers in Massachusetts come together to build important personal and professional relationships. The WBA is about women helping women. When you join the WBA you can expect leadership opportunities, rewarding work on our committees, a networking forum for business development, and more. 

At the WBA, our vision is to build a strong community of women lawyers who make a difference in the profession and in society at large. 

At the WBA, our purpose is to achieve the full and equal participation of women in every aspect of society. We believe a strong community of women lawyers is essential to the administration of justice.

At the WBA, our philosophy is that women lawyers face common challenges and can teach and learn from one another. We believe the individual and collective achievements of women lawyers should be celebrated.

At the WBA, our goal is to focus on you. We want to help you strengthen your professional expertise and develop the skills you need to become leaders in the profession and community. We recognize that our members have different needs and that everyone defines personal and professional success a little differently. We want to support your personal and professional growth by providing you access to the resources you need and connecting you with other women who share your passion for the law, for women's issues, and for making a difference. We are the #1 resource for women attorneys in Massachusetts.

At the WBA, we are women with a vision. We are ambitious, proactive and focused. Join us today.