Welcome to the Great Women in Compliance Podcast, co-hosted by Lisa Fine and Mary Shirley.In this episode of GWIC, Lisa speaks with Fatema Merchant, who is an  International Trade and White Collar Defense partner at Sheppard Mullin.  She is also the first hijab-wearing woman to make partner at a Washington, D.C., Am Law 100 firm.

Fatema talks about wearing the hijab in the context of how each of us expresses our identities and some common misconceptions.  Many of us, women and men, may feel like our identities impact how others view our roles  in meetings and investigations and Fatema speaks about her own experiences.  When Fatema made partner, many South Asian, Muslim and women attorneys reached out to her and she talks about the role of mentorship in creating diverse leaders in the compliance and legal professions.

Fatema is also a member of the steering committee for Sheppard Mullin’s Organizational Integrity Group.  OIG helps clients avoid potential crises by identifying and addressing threats to companies’ integrity through proactive solutions.  As Lisa works in-house, Fatema turns the tables on Lisa and asks her some questions about working with outside counsel.

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