At the end of 2011, we reported on the launch of a new statewide mentorship program in New York: the Gillibrand Women’s Mentoring Initiative. At that time, New York’s U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand announced a partnership with the Council of Urban Professionals (CUP) and the Partnership for New York City. The goal: to find 100 senior executives who were willing to share their time and expertise with 100 up-and-coming women professionals.
The mission was accomplished, and in 2012, the first wave of Gillibrand’s mentor/mentee pairs met quarterly, checking in with the Partnership along the way to report on progress. Among the 200 participants were mentor Lori Lesser, a partner at Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP, and mentee S. Jeanine Conley, the Hiring Partner for BakerHostetler’s summer and fall recruitment and a member of the firm’s litigation group.
Lesser and Conley participated in The Glass Hammer’s 2011 article, New Women’s Mentoring Initiative Kicks Off Across New York, and when we last connected with them, they had just met for their first mentorship breakfast powwow. “It was more than I even expected after only our initial meeting,” Conley told us at the time.
A year later, as CUP reviews nominations for the second class of leaders to participate in the initiative, we checked in with Lesser and Conley to find out how their mentoring experience unfolded and what they gained through the initiative.