Shearman & Sterling’s Emily Griffen, a San Francisco-based counsel in the Litigation Group, was featured in a “Movers and Shakers” column on The Glass Hammer, an online community designed for women executives in financial services, law and business.
In this profile, Griffen talks about her expanding roles and responsibilities as a litigator. In only her fourth year as an associate, she was involved in a three-week-long jury trial in a securities-related employment dispute, ultimately obtaining a defense verdict for the client. “This was an incredible and unique experience for me so early in my career,” she said. “I feel so fortunate to have had such a rewarding experience, which is rare for a securities litigator.” More recently, Griffen has worked on white collar crime and consumer class action suits, as well as securities and corporate governance litigation, for major clients like LG Electronics Inc. and Toyota Motor Corporation.
One of the most difficult yet gratifying experiences in her career has been participating in the firm’s pro bono project providing legal assistance to the Office of the Prosecutor at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda in Tanzania. As part of this program, Griffen spent a month in Africa assisting in the prosecution of genocide crimes. “This is such an important initiative,” she said, “and having the opportunity to participate in a project like this is one of the benefits of working for a world-class law firm like Shearman & Sterling.”
Griffen is also grateful to the firm for its support of the LGBT community. As a member of that community, she says she has never experienced difficulties at work due to her sexual orientation. On the contrary, she has found her colleagues and firm leadership to be very accepting and welcoming. It was important to her to find a firm that reflected her personal values, she said, and she encourages aspiring lawyers to do the same.