2006 Women to Watch: Jill B. BerkeleyPosted On: Oct. 8, 2006 12:00 AM CST
As a partner in the Global Litigation Group at Howrey L.L.P., Jill B. Berkeley co-chairs the firm's insurance recovery practice. She has worked at several law firms over the past 30 years and has extensive experience in the representation of policyholders and claimants in coverage litigation involving toxic torts and hazardous wastes, construction, products liability, intellectual property and excess liability matters. Ms. Berkeley is the 2005 recipient of the Andrew C. Hecker Memorial Award presented by the Tort & Insurance Practice Section of the American Bar Assn. She has been listed in Chambers USA among America's Leading Business Lawyers 2006, Top 5 Insurance Coverage Litigation Lawyers in Illinois; Illinois 2006 Super Lawyers and the Top 50 Leading Women Business Lawyers in Illinois 2006.
Q: Who has had the greatest influence on your career and why?
A: "In a strange way, the greatest influences on my career were the doors that were closed against me. It forced me to fight for myself and take new directions and risks."
Q: What advice would you give young women entering the industry today?
A: "Don't feel you have to be defined by other peoples' ‘labels’ and ‘job descriptions.’ Discover what your interests and passions are and incorporate them into your professional life."
Q: If you had the ability to change one thing about the industry what would it be?
A: "“I would like to see more decision-makers with a ‘big picture’ perspective. The insurance industry is, in many areas, bogged down by people who are intent on maintaining the status quo and their own position, rather than being open to change."