A lot has changed since Margaret “Peggy” Abrams first joined the North Carolina Advocates for Justice over four decades ago — especially when it comes to being a woman trial lawyer.
“When I was a young female lawyer in this organization, and just practicing in general, there were so many fewer,” says Peggy. “And it was important to me to be seen not as a woman lawyer, but just as a lawyer.”
Back then, she and many other women would have opposed the idea of a separate women’s sub-organization within NCAJ. But as things have changed and the number of female members in the organization has grown, she couldn’t be prouder of the progress that NCAJ’s Women’s Caucus has made. Throughout her time in various leadership positions as NCAJ — including president — her advocacy for women is one of her proudest accomplishments.
That emphasis on support for one another is part of what makes Peggy such a legend within the organization.
Don’t miss this episode of Voices of NCAJ as host Melissa Abrams sits down with Peggy to discuss her career, her leadership style, and her favorite moments as a longtime NCAJ member and leader.
🎙️ Featured Guest 🎙️
Name: Margaret S. “Peggy” Abrams
What she does: Peggy Abrams is a partner at Abrams & Abrams P.A. She represents personal injury, concentrating on areas like tractor-trailer wrecks, industrial industries and plant explosions. She has been involved with NCAJ for four decades and has held various leadership roles, including president. She currently serves as an AAJ state delegate.
Words of wisdom: “One of the things about NCAJ that I think is fabulous is that we are not competitive with one another, as far as my experience. We all do very similar things. But we're not really competing against each other for clients. And then when we get a case, we share so much. And I'm hopeful that that ability to support each other in that way will remain, and that we don't change the culture at all.”
A positive environment makes a huge difference. In an industry that is still dominated by men, NCAJ stands out as an organization that is welcoming and supportive of women. Part of the reason is its emphasis on support and sharing among members, rather than on competition.
Listen to everyone in the room. One of the most important leadership skills that Peggy has learned throughout her time in various NCAJ roles is listening. When attempting to achieve certain goals, it’s important to listen to everyone in the room so that everyone feels included as part of the team.
Model to lead. While it’s important to listen to young lawyers to find out what they need in order to be successful, they are also still learning. More senior members should model appropriate behaviors and activities to show how important they are for the legal system.
Voices of NCAJ features intimate and inspiring conversations with organization members in celebration of its 60th anniversary.
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