The National LGBT Bar Association congratulates LGBT Bar member Donna L. Wilson, who was recently selected to be the next CEO and managing partner of Manatt, Phelps, & Phillips, LLP, effective July 1, 2019. Manatt is a national legal and professional services firm with over 450 lawyers and consultants, featuring practices ranging from media and entertainment, health care, media and entertainment, energy, environmental, government relations, and many others. A South Jersey native and graduate of the University of Virginia School of Law, Donna’s legal practice has largely focused on financial services litigation and privacy and data security. Currently, Donna chairs Manatt’s privacy and data security group and co-chairs the financial services litigation and enforcement practice.
“I am very proud to have been selected to lead Manatt into this exciting new chapter in our history,” Donna said, “I look toward a successful future and continuing to foster LGBTQ attorneys at Manatt and elsewhere.”
Donna’s membership with the LGBT Bar is an important resource in her professional life. She believes that her career has paralleled the movement towards greater equality in the LGBTQ community. “It is actually very emotional sometimes to see how far we have come as a community and in the legal profession,” says Donna.
When Donna started her career in Washington, D.C., there was a local LGBT bar association that was quite active. She became involved with the institution and started attending and speaking at the Annual Lavender Law Conference and Career Fair.
“When I first became a lawyer, the resources that are available today to the LGBTQ community just weren’t there,” Donna says. “[The LGBT Bar] is a really essential part of my career path.”
Donna regards the Lavender Law Conference as a great opportunity to make new connections and see old friends. One colleague that Donna met through Lavender Law is John Treviño, an active member of the LGBT Bar and someone that Donna has known for years. When an opportunity arose for John to join the fast expanding privacy and data security group at Manatt, Donna jumped into bringing him on board, where given his extensive in-house experience as a privacy counsel for Fortune 500 companies, John has quickly become a key member of the group. She also has had opportunities to co-present at the conference with her friend and client, Cameron Faber, who is general counsel of the LA LGBT Center. In fact, Donna, Linda Kornfeld, partner and vice chair of the insurance recovery group at Blank Rome, and Cameron will all be presenting on data privacy law at the upcoming Corporate Counsel Institute of the Annual Conference. Manatt is a sponsor of the Lavender Law Conference, and has been for many years.
The LGBT Bar is pleased to have Donna among our members, wishes her great success in her new role, and is excited to see her at Lavender Law!