From 2001 until she joined the Law School in 2003, Abbie Willard was Director of External Affairs for the American Bar Foundation, a research foundation dedicated to the study of law, legal institutions, and legal careers. She holds a PhD from the University of Illinois.
Prior to joining the ABF, Ms. Willard was employed by Georgetown University Law Center for more than 21 years. As Assistant Dean at Georgetown, her responsibilities included student and alumni career services, publications oversight and marketing strategies, web policy and content development, as well as strategic plan and self study preparation. She is a recipient of the Georgetown University McCarthy Award for Excellence in Administration and Service.
Ms. Willard's publications include The Lateral Lawyer (NALP Foundation for Research and Education, 2001) with Paula Patton; Perceptions of Partnership (NALP Foundation for Research and Education, 1999) with Paula Patton; Keeping the Keepers: Strategies for Associate Retention (NALP Foundation for Research and Education, 1998) with Paula Patton; Fair Measure: Toward Effective Attorney Evaluations (American Bar Association Commission on Women and the Profession, 1997) with Jeanne Svikhart; and "Gender and the Profession: The Search for Equal Access," Georgetown University Journal of Legal Ethics (summer 1990).
Ms. Willard has served as president of the National Association for Law Placement, chair of the NALP Research and Education Foundation, and as a member of the executive coordinating committee for After the JD, an unprecedented national longitudinal study of lawyer careers. In 2000 she received the NALP Mark of Distinction Award for lifetime service to the profession.