Riley takes reins of women attorneys group

Law Talk profile for The Memphis Daily News

Feb. 28, 2013

Fran Riley was named president of the Association for Women Attorneys at the organization’s 33rd annual banquet and silent auction last month.

Riley is a law clerk to the five judges of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of Tennessee.

“It (bankruptcy law) incorporates many other types of law in that there are often property disputes and security disputes,” she said. “Although it is a specific type of law, it is a wide-ranging law. … Working for the court, you get to see all facets as opposed to seeing only your client’s side of an issue.”

The AWA, 200 members strong and including both men and women, was founded in 1979 and its members are, according to the organization’s website, “dedicated to supporting each other as attorneys, educating themselves and others in the law, and being of service to the community with particular reference to the legal needs of women.”

Riley became involved with AWA as a student at the University of Memphis Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law when she met attorney Francis Loring.

“She was someone you could learn a lot from and she encouraged me to become involved in AWA when I was a law student, and I can say I have very much personally benefited from AWA,” Riley said.

The organization offers a Marion Griffin-Frances Loring Award for outstanding achievement in the legal profession, won this year by U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Paulette J. Delk … (read more)