​”I first knew that I wanted to become an attorney when I was 8 or 9 years old.”
Name: ​Angelique A. David

Title: Executive Managing Director, Chief Operating Officer and General Counsel

Company: Ziegler

Ziegler
Sonya:  When did you first realize that you wanted to become an attorney? What first drew you to a career as an attorney? What do you enjoy most about your career now?

Angelique: I first knew that I wanted to become an attorney when I was 8 or 9 years old.  It was at the moment that my cousin, Judge George Bunyan, took me into his chambers to show me his legal books!   I loved to read and the books seemed so important and mysterious.  He let me sit at his desk and try on his robe!  At that moment, I knew that I wanted to become an attorney and, ultimately, a judge.  As I entered into private practice my career has taken me down a corporate pathway (which I love), but you never know what the future holds… and I still think the idea of “being a judge” is fascinating.  

Sonya: Have there been specific people (real or fictional) or pivotal situations/events that have inspired you, helped shape your career?

Angelique: Yes!  I am a firm believer that God puts people in your life for a reason. Throughout my journey there have been many people who have helped shaped who I am today.  From my cousin, Judge Bunyan, to my high school English teacher, Ms. Betsy Shank, to my many friends and mentors – some who are lawyers and some who are not.  A successful career is not achieved alone, but with love, support and encouragement by many.  

Sonya: Are there particular traits that you believe successful attorneys share? Traits that you believe you have yourself and which you look for in hiring outside and in-house counsel? How about common traits you’ve observed in other successful GCs?

Angelique: Successful lawyers are ambitious, determined and strive for excellence in everything they touch.  When hiring outside counsel, I look for counsel that understand my business and are able so solve problems in a practical manner.  I also need to trust that my outside counsel will take great care in my matters – regardless of how small or large of a matter they may be handling.

Sonya: What professional accomplishment are you most proud of? What would you like your legacy to be in your company/law department? In the legal profession?

Angelique: I am the youngest GC that Ziegler has ever hired and the first woman or minority to ever sit on Ziegler’s board of directors.  I am hopeful that I am paving a path for future young professionals, minorities and women.

Sonya: Have you had mentors/sponsors? Have you acted as a mentor/sponsor to others? Is mentorship/sponsorship important? How? Why?

Angelique: Yes!  I have had numerous mentors/sponsors and have acted as a mentor/sponsor. Mentors/Sponsors provide unfiltered wisdom and guidance that you might not otherwise be able to gain from a colleague or manager.   A good mentor wants to see you grow and develop and will not be shy to tell you when you are amazing, but also when you are going down a bad path.  Mentors will also provide opportunities and open doors for you.  

Sonya: Think about the legal profession over the course of the next ten years. What do you see as the big changes that are coming which you believe will most significantly impact the profession and the role of the GC/in-house legal department?

Angelique: Most companies are trying to do more with less.  As such, I believe the role of GC may morph into a dual legal/business role.  

Sonya: Describe a significant challenge you have faced in your life or career. How did you overcome it? What did you learn from it?

Angelique: The most significant challenge that I have had (and continue) to face is balancing a successful career, raising two amazing children, being a wife, daughter and friend – and not cracking in the midst of the juggling act.  I am able to manage it today with a lot of prayer, yoga and meditation!  I also know when and where to set boundaries.  

Sonya: What does Diversity & Inclusion mean to you? How important is D&I to you personally? As a GC? To your company/legal department? What advice do you have for GCs and others seeking to make a positive impact on the progress of D&I in their organizations and in the legal profession?

Angelique: Diversity and inclusion means accepting, embracing and valuing all people and their opinions.  D&I is very important to me and I am thoughtful about it in my hiring of outside counsel.  

Sonya: If you were not General Counsel of your company (or of any company or even a lawyer at all), what career do you think you would most like to pursue?

Angelique: If I were not a lawyer I would be an event planner or an actress!  I love creating amazing and memorable experiences for people.

Sonya: Knowing what you know now about being a lawyer and a GC, if you could give one piece of advice to your younger self, what would it be? At what point in your past would you give yourself that advice?

Angelique: Knowing what I know today, I would tell myself to slow down, stop and smell the roses and don’t burn yourself out.  Lawyering and climbing the corporate ladder can be all encompassing and mentally and physically taxing.  It is important to take your time and to manage your stress level throughout the process.  

Sonya: Tell me something fun about yourself. A personal skill or hobby that, while not directly related to your day job, you feel makes you more well-rounded, helps you be better at your day job and/or helps relax and focus you to do your job as a GC better.

Angelique: I own a company, Just 4 GirlFriends, that is dedicated to helping women embrace self-care and self-preservation by providing them with unique and engaging experiences.   I believe that women are often so busy taking care of everything and everyone that we forget to take care of ourselves.  That is where J4G comes in – we put together events – you grab your girlfriends and come and have a stress free, fun time!

Sonya: Hashtag/Brand yourself in 5 words or less (For example, mine is #SelfiesWithSonya )

Angelique: #AngeliqueLovesLife

Sonya Old Soms - Angelique David
Sonya Old Soms - Angelique David