This entry was originally written for our December 2015 Newsletter. Download PDF file to view all articles.

CLAIRE E. PARSONS is not your typical emerging attorney. She is an undeniable force and has a reputation for using her keen legal sense to protect her clients’ legal interests, while staying committed to bringing a spotlight on females in litigation. As a litigator, Claire has an impressive resume having obtained precedent-setting decisions through written and oral advocacy in the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit and the Kentucky Court of Appeals. She has successfully handled all aspects of state and federal civil rights and tort litigation for county, municipal, and school entities and elected officials in both Kentucky and Ohio. Simply put, she is one of the main reasons ASWD is the sought after law firm for government litigation matters.

Aside from litigation, Claire has become a leader in Special Education law. As part of the ASWD Government Practice Group led by Partner Mary Ann Stewart, Claire has worked to define an area that until now was underrepresented in our region. Several years ago, Claire and her team recognized the lack of specialization with regards to protecting school districts from litigation for noncompliance in accordance with ADA and special education laws. As such, they started at the ground level researching, developing and implementing legal strategies that now put their clients among the top in our region for servicing special education students. Currently, Claire and the ASWD school law attorneys represent two Kentucky school districts, serving as general counsel and managing all special education litigation. “Supporting districts in developing legally sound district-wide plans that both help their special education students reach their fullest potential while protecting them from litigation, is extremely important work,” says Parsons. “I am proud of the work that our firm has done to advance the knowledge-base for special education law.”

ASWD attorneys have a reputation for working harder than anyone else in the industry. Claire is no exception. Aside from litigation and her civil rights representation, she is also a co-founder of the Northern Kentucky Bar Association’s Lean In Circle based on Sheryl Sandberg’s book Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead. The group was founded to create a platform where successful female attorneys can find support for the balance issues that arise with focusing on career and life goals equally. “The percentage of female litigators is far below that of males,” says Claire. “We bring an important dimension to trial litigation for jurors. However, the time and stress demands for litigation attorneys are very high. This element leads talented female attorneys to choose less demanding areas of law to practice when starting families and such. The Lean In Circle was started to help combat female attorneys from steering away from challenging areas like litigation because they feel like they must choose. Simply put, it is a platform of experience and support for highly motivated women in the industry.” Along with the Lean in Circle, Claire is a major contributor to Makerspace, a place where students in Boone County can go to innovate, play and create. In addition, she is an active member of the Northern Kentucky Chamber’s Womans’ Initiative, was awarded the Next Generation Leadership Award while serving in The Leadership Class of 2015, and is a Welcome House Board member. If your organization is searching for a talented litigator, leader, and community advocate, don’t hesitate to learn more about Claire Parsons’ legal practice at www.aswdlaw.com.