WILHK Highlights

At WILHK, we want to build a community that empowers, celebrates and inspires women in the legal profession.

 

If you are a female legal professional in Hong Kong and have recently been promoted to Partner/Director or other senior level, or have received a prominent award/recognition we would love to hear about it and share it so other women can be inspired by your achievements. Email info@wilhk.com and let us know.

April 2019

Ninette Dodoo promoted to Partner and co-head of China antitrust practice

Ninette was recently promoted to partner at Freshfields. She spent over 10 years in Brussels advising on EU and multijurisdictional matters before relocating to Beijing in 2009. Her practice covers antitrust-related work in China, Hong Kong and the Asia-Pacific region. She specialises in cross-border mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, strategic alliances, distribution arrangements, cartels, abuse of dominance, compliance and audits.

 

Ninette has recently acted on some of China’s most complex and significant merger control matters (including remedies negotiations) and antitrust investigations across a range of industry sectors. Clients include multinational companies, state-owned enterprises and sovereign wealth funds active across a range of industry sectors, including shipping, pharmaceuticals, healthcare and life sciences, consumer goods, food and beverage, mining and IT. In Hong Kong, she has advised several clients in the fast-moving consumer goods, retail and telecommunications sectors.

 

Ninette is ranked in Band 1 in leading legal directories. She is a frequent speaker at international conferences on antitrust matters, and has authored a number of publications on antitrust issues.

WILHK’s vice-chair Alison Tsai moderated the Jardines 2019 Strategic Direction by Chairman and MD Ben Keswick on “Momentum Shift”, where Ben spoke to senior leadership of Jardine Matheson on the Group’s strategy and purpose going forward to create a better, more valued future for our families, communities and Asia.

 

Alison was also invited to interview Ben after the event where he shared a recap of the presentation and covered some additional questions from the Q&A session at the Entertainment Suite at The Landmark Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong.

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January 2019

Mariel Dimsey has been promoted to Partner, effective from January 22 2019. 

Mariel is an international commercial and investment arbitration specialist based out of the CMS Hong Kong office. She is an Australian Lawyer and Hong Kong Solicitor (non-practising) with over 10 years’ experience acting as advisor and advocate in numerous international arbitrations covering a wide range of legal systems and industries. She also regularly sits as arbitrator and has significant experience across international arbitration institutions including HKIAC, ICC and DIS.

She is a co-chair of the HK45 Committee, and a member of the Events Committee of Women in Law Hong Kong (WILHK). She is ranked in Legal 500 and Who’s Who Legal: Arbitration 2019 as one of the top five arbitration practitioners in Asia-Pacific in the Future Leaders – Non-Partners category (which predated her partnership). Mariel has published and spoken extensively on international arbitration topics.

July 2018

Stephanie Sheng recognized by ALB as Asia's Top 25 In-House Lawyer

Stephanie Sheng, Executive Director and Vice President of the Business Intelligence Group, Legal Department at Goldman Sachs Hong Kong, and chair of WILHK, has been selected as a top 25 in-house lawyer in Asia.  The selected in-house lawyers are based on recommendations from law firms, awards, and accolades received in the past year, and market feedback.  

May 2018

Sheena Loi has been promoted to Senior Consultant, effective from 1 May 2018. 

Sheena joined Herbert Smith Freehills in 2005 and is an experienced corporate/M&A lawyer. Her practice extends across a broad range of complex cross-border mergers and acquisitions, disposals, joint ventures and investments and takeovers  in the TMT and energy sectors across the Asia-Pacific region. Her experience also includes commercial contracting, including major mission critical IT outsourcing projects and satellite procurement projects and advising clients on data privacy and cyber security. Sheena has deep industry knowledge of the TMT, energy and financial services sectors, having completed secondments at Telstra, China Light and Power and National Australia Bank.

Sheena graduated from Monash University in Victoria, Australia with a bachelor of laws and bachelor of commerce. She has experience working in Hong Kong, Melbourne and London and is qualified to practice in Hong Kong and Australia.

April 2018

Joanna Caen promoted as Herbert Smith Freehills champions gender diversity

WILHK member, Joanna Caen, has been promoted to partner. The firm's partner promotions bring the percentage of female partners at Herbert Smith Freehills in Asia to 30%.  Both new Asia partners (Joanna Caen in Hong Kong and Helen Tang in Shanghai) are female and globally, 14 of the 17 lawyers promoted to the firm's partnership this year were women. 
Joanna specialises in private client and wealth management work. A respected adviser to family businesses, banks and investment firms, Joanna's skills are in demand as Asia grapples with both booming business wealth and increased succession issues, as the founders of the region's largely family-run businesses approach retirement.  With Asia soon expected to overtake North America as the largest wealth management market in the world, Joanna's pan-Asian private wealth practice is in strong demand, helping families prevent and resolve complex disputes. Joanna graduated from the University of Auckland with bachelor's and master's degrees in law. She began her career in New Zealand before joining Herbert Smith Freehills in Hong Kong in 2015.
 

January 2018

Stephanie Sheng – Chair of Women in Law

Stephanie Sheng, Executive Director and Vice President of the Business Intelligence Group, Legal Department at Goldman Sachs Hong Kong, and chair of WILHK, has been featured by Goldman Sachs.

In the interview, Stephanie discusses the evolution of her career and her roles within Goldman Sachs as well as her support of causes that support diversity and the community, including Women in Law Hong Kong.   
 



 

November 2017

Jeanette Chan, Managing Partner - China Practice, Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison 

Jeanette Chan, Managing Partner of the China Practice at Paul, Weiss, was featured in a Q&A for Asian-mena Counsel magazine. In an interview published November 16, Jeanette discusses being mentored by Paul, Weiss of counsel Jerome Cohen; the evolution of the China legal market over her career; her engagement in industry initiatives promoting the advancement of women such as WILHK; and the qualities that make a good lawyer, among other topics.



 

November 2017

Asia Women in Business Law Awards 2017

Congratulations to members of the Women in Law Hong Kong committee, for receiving nominations and awards in the following categories at the Asia Women in Business Law Awards 2017, held at the JW Marriot.  The event honored exceptional female lawyers from across Asia Pacific.  Committee member Alison Tsai also presented the award for Pro-Bono counsel of the year. 

 

WILHK would also like to congratulate all the additional nominees and winners at the event!

 

Nominee for the Rising Star: Corporate Award – Jeanette Tam, Bird & Bird

 

Nominee for the Rising Star: Finance Award – Ka Yin Au Yeung, Hogan Lovells

 

Nominee for the Rising Star: Litigation Award – Mariel Dimsey, Hogan Lovells

 

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Winner of the Rising Star: IP Award – Nina Fitzgerald, Deacons

 

Winner of International Financial Law Review In-House Award – Stephanie Sheng, Goldman Sachs

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October 2017

May Tai - Managing Partner, Greater China, Herbert Smith Freehills

Partner May Tai has been appointed Managing Partner, Greater China, effective from 1 October 2017. The practice comprises 300 partners, lawyers and staff in Beijing, Hong Kong and Shanghai, offering corporate, capital markets, finance and disputes advice to local and international clients.

May Tai specialises in China-related disputes, representing both Chinese parties and non-Chinese parties. She is a CEDR-accredited mediator, an arbitrator in the HKIAC List of Arbitrators, a member of the CIETAC HK panel of arbitrators and Committee Member of the SIAC Users Council for Hong Kong.

A graduate of Somerville College, University of Oxford, May joined Herbert Smith Freehills as a trainee in 2001 and became a partner in 2010. She has been based in Greater China since 2009, spending 18 months in Shanghai, three years in Beijing and four years in Hong Kong.

May is based in Hong Kong but regularly spends time in Herbert Smith Freehills' Shanghai and Beijing offices, and has also practised in the firm's London, Singapore and Tokyo offices. She speaks Chinese (Mandarin and Cantonese), Bahasa (Malaysian and Indonesian) and English, and is qualified in England and Wales and Hong Kong.

May is an active WILHK member, participating and speaking at various WILHK – sponsored events and workshops.

September 2017

Etelka Bogardi – Partner, Norton Rose Fulbright

Etelka Bogardi has recently been appointed as a partner in the Hong Kong office of Norton Rose Fulbright. She joined the firm from the Hong Kong Monetary Authority where she was Senior Counsel. 

Etelka advises international financial institutions, investment funds, intermediaries and insurance companies on compliance with regulatory laws. She is particularly familiar with financial services legislation, implementation, licensing and authorisation issues, banking supervision, and cross-border regulatory issues (including co-operation with foreign and international supervisory bodies), as well as legal issues relating to the development of the financial infrastructure of Hong Kong.  

Etelka was a founding member of WILHK and chaired the Asia-wide Women in Business Network at her previous law firm. 

September 2017

Teresa Ko, China Chairman of Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, has been ranked third in the Financial Times / HERoes ‘10 Global Champions of Women in Business’ list.


This prestigious accolade aims to recognise individuals who use their personal success as a platform to further the cause of gender equality in business globally. In reaching their decision, the judges took into account Teresa’s leadership of women’s events run by the firm and other diversity initiatives, along with her efforts to highlight gender inequality in Hong Kong, Asia and beyond this region. Teresa was also the first female chair of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange’s Listing Committee and sits on the steering committee of Hong Kong’s 30% Club. She is executive sponsor of Freshfields’ Asia Women’s Network.

August 2017

Hong Kong Lawyer published an article about the return of WILHK's mentoring programme this year.

 

For the full article, please click on the button below.

May 2017

Georgia Dawson – Asia Managing Partner, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
 
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has recently appointed Georgia Dawson as the new Regional Managing Partner for Asia. Georgia has been with Freshfields for 13 years and has a strong market profile and reputation in dispute resolution. Formerly, Georgia also served as the partner responsible for diversity and has a long track record of championing the firm’s diversity initiatives. In her new role, she continues to support the firm’s wider responsible business strategy.

April 2017


Women in Law Chair, Stephanie Sheng, was featured as part of Asialaw’s Exceptional Female In-House Counsel interview series. Sheng was featured in connection with WILHK’s Flexible Working Panel discussion (co-hosted by Freshfields), and discussed WILHK’s initiatives in the area, as well as WILHK’s successful mentoring programme.

March 2017

Stephanie Sheng – Chair of Women in Law
 
Stephanie Sheng was the winner of a C-5 Compliance Officer of the Year award, held at Grosvenor House in London. Stephanie was selected out of a global selection of candidates identified for their achievements, energy, ambition and spirit in the positive future of the compliance community.
 
The C5 Group is a global institution consisting of C5 (UK), American Conference Institute, L’Institut Canadien and Canadian Institute.  The C5 Group companies developed and host over 500 annual conferences, summits and executive briefings to provide business intelligence in the marketplace.  C5 Group has offices in New York, London and Toronto.  Over 25,000 senior business and public sector executives, lawyers and other professionals from the United States, Europe, Russia and CIS, China, Canada, Australia, Asia and Africa are active members.
 

March 2017

The Women's Foundation (TWF) Director of Pipeline Initiatives, Jo Hayes, wrote about the positive impact of mentoring programmes for women in Hong Kong in HR Magazine and mentions WILHK's mentoring programme in her article. Click here to read Jo's article.

February 2017

 

The Women's Foundation publish a link about WILHK's mentoring programme launch in their newsletter.

For full details of our 2017 Mentoring Programme, please click on the button below.

November 2016

Samantha Jayawardane – Director of China Practice, Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison
 

Sammi was inducted into the Asia-Pacific Professional Services Marketing Association (APSMA) Hall of Fame.  The purpose and objective of the APSMA Hall of Fame is to acknowledge and honour significant contributions of people who have developed the Professional Services Marketing industry across the Asia Pacific region. Sammi sat as a Committee Member on the Hong Kong committee for 4 years, the last year of which she was Co-Chair.

 

Please join us in congratulating Sammi on her significant achievement.  

October 2016

Kathryn Sanger – Partner, Herbert Smith Freehills

Kathryn Sanger joined the firm's top-rated international arbitration team as a partner in October 2016, based in Hong Kong.

Kathryn has nearly 15 years' experience of arbitration and litigation proceedings in Asia, particularly in joint venture and China-related proceedings, enhanced by her ability to speak and read Mandarin Chinese fluently. She is also a longstanding member of the Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre (HKIAC) Council, chairing its appointment committee, and has been closely involved in the development of the HKIAC into one of the world's leading arbitral institutions.

Kathryn is a WILHK member and an active supporter of gender and diversity initiatives.

February 2016

 

The Women's Foundation publish a link about WILHK's mentoring programme launch in their newsletter.

 

For the full article, please click on the button below.

February 2016

 

"Women in Law Hong Kong (WILHK) today announces the launch of their cross-firm mentoring programme, a first of its kind that is specific for legal professionals in Hong Kong."

 

For the full article, please click on the button below.

September 2015

Brooke Holden – Gall

Dispute resolution & litigation

 

Has recently been promoted to Partner at boutique litigation firm Gall. Last night she won the Rising Star category in the Asia-Pacific Dispute Resolution Awards hosted by Asialaw, as well as being included in the Asian Legal Business’ ‘Forty under Forty’ – a list of ‘Asia’s Brightest Young Legal Minds’.

 

Join us in congratulating Brooke on these outstanding achievements.

September 2015

Jeanette K. Chan – Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison

 

Corporate partner Jeanette Chan was named "Dealmaker of the Year" at the Asian Legal Business Hong Kong Law Awards on September 11. Commenting on her achievement, Jeanette said “To me, this award should go to the firm. No one person can be a “dealmaker” without the support of his/her team. In my case, I am fortunate to have a fabulous team, many of whom have worked with me for over a decade.” Jeanette was joint winner of the award.

September 2015

 

Congratulations to all the outstanding women who were nominated on Wednesday for the Euromoney Legal Media Group Asia Women in Business Law Awards 2015. On November 11, Asia's leading female lawyers will gather at the JW Marriott in Hong Kong to celebrate the achievements of women in the legal profession.

August 2015

 

APSMA releases an article about the WILHK launch event, noting that "The overwhelming support for the WILHK launch and the enthusiasm at the event highlighted the need for WILHK."

 

For the full article, please click on the button below.

June 2015 Edition

 

ALB writes about WILHK in their "Diversity" section:

 

"A number of law firms in Hong Kong have come together to launch Women in Law Hong Kong (WILHK), a legal community that aims to provide a networking platform for private practice lawyers, in-house counsel and other legal professionals in the city."

18 June 2015

 

In-House Community posts an article about the WILHK launch event, commenting on the "strong turnout" and includes quotes from both Nina Fitzgerald (Chairperson of WILHK) and Crystal Antica (Vice-Chairperson of WILHK). 

17 June 2015

 

The Professional Services and Marketing Group posts an article on the launch of WILHK and mentions:

 

"The overwhelming support for the WILHK launch and the enthusiasm at the event highlighted the need for WILHK which is one of the first networks to provide a dynamic networking platform for private practice lawyers, in-house counsel and other legal professionals based in Hong Kong."

16 June 2015

 

The Women's Federation congratulates committee members on the successful launch of WILHK in their newsletter.

1 June 2015

 

Conventus Law runs an article about the launch of WILHK and announces that the launch party will take place at Cipriani on 15 June 2015.

August 2019

Hong Kong Lawyer has published a piece on WILHK's report on flexible and agile working in the legal industry. Check out the overriding motivations, hesitations and societal factors at play, as well as the business case and what employers can do to improve the status quo.

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