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Susie Staley and Rachel Cardoza believe part of being professional is also being approachable. They value making clients feel comfortable.
Susie and Rachel met when studying law and continued their friendship as practitioners working in Dunedin.
After nine years in practice they decided to join forces, particularly as their different fields of expertise meant they could offer a full range of legal services.
Staley Cardoza Lawyers was formed in 1998, unwittingly making history as the first 'all women' partnership in Otago.
"We were surprised it had taken so long,'' Rachel says. "We're really proud of the women lawyers who paved the way for us, and those subsequent to us.''
She and Susie agree that for young women launching their careers, self-belief is incredibly important.
Rachel also says it's important for women to know that being a mother or a partner shouldn't prevent them being successful in their career.
While International Women's Day is a great chance to celebrate how much has been achieved by women, it's also a time to reflect on what is still required, Susie says.
"There's still a great deal of violence, and girls in some of the most violent countries are generally not educated.''
"There's still a long way to go in terms of real equality,'' Rachel adds. "I believe International Women's Day promotes the cause in a constructive fashion.''
Rachel and Susie have contributed to the Dunedin community by way of voluntary positions held with the University of Otago, Community Law Centre, Otago Chamber of Commerce and ID Dunedin Fashion Inc, to name a few.