International law firm DLA Piper is commemorating the centenary of the appointment of the first woman to be appointed partner of a law firm in New Zealand on 31 October.
The firm says Lyra Taylor, who joined DLA Piper's New Zealand partnership in 1919 in the Wellington office was possibly the only partner until the 1940's.
"She was an outstanding person, who was driven by social justice issues, particularly as they affected women and children. She was involved with the National Council of Women from 1918 and was a pro bono lawyer for the Society for the Protection of Women and Children from 1921. She went on to work, lecture and study overseas, became renowned for her social work, and was awarded an OBE," says DLA Piper New Zealand partner Tracey Cross.
Chief Justice Dame Helen Winkelmann was the first woman to be a partner in DLA Piper's Auckland office. She is giving a keynote address at celebrations of Lyra Taylor's partnership appointment.
100 years on from Ms Taylor's appointment, DLA Piper says 45% of their partnership are women.