Gawthrop Greenwood Partner, First Woman to Lead Mid-Sized Law Firm in Chesco Re-Elected

Sandra L. Knapp

Sandra L. Knapp has been elected Chair of the Management Committee at Gawthrop Greenwood, a full-service law firm with offices in West Chester and Wilmington.

It’s a role Knapp first took on in 2011, when she blazed a trail for female attorneys across the region by becoming the first woman in Chester County to be elected to manage a mid- to large-sized law firm. Knapp leads a five-person management committee that also includes Stephen R. McDonnell, Patrick M. McKenna, Michael F. Merlie, and Stephen G. Rhoads.

Knapp is part of a select group of women from across the country serving as the head of mid- and large-sized law firms, according to the Philadelphia Business Journal. The publication reports that while more than 50 percent of U.S. law graduates over the past two decades have been women, men still comprise more than 80 percent of all partners. The number of women in management roles is even smaller.

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At Gawthrop Greenwood, women comprise 30 percent of partners with projected growth.

“The legal world is more fluid than ever, with clients requiring attorneys who are focused in increasingly diverse areas of the law,” said Knapp. “Our ability to immediately provide that heightened level of comprehensive service, in-house, is critical and has long been a hallmark of our firm. With the recruitment of the region’s top talent, we continue to expand these services.”

Knapp succeeds Walter P. Eells, who led the firm as Chair of the Management Committee for the last three years.

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