Women in Business

West Hill Reading List: Non-Fiction Edition

21 February 2024

As a women-owned law firm and business, uplifting women and championing their rights and success is immensely important to us. 

To celebrate women, we’ve curated a special reading list with some of our favorite non-fiction books that focus on the empowerment of women and girls. Consider this blog post your official invitation to join our informal book club. 

West Hill’s Non-Fiction Favorites

A Woman of No Importance by Sonia Purnell 

Untamed by Glennon Doyle 

The Heart of a Woman by Maya Angelou 

Wild by Cheryl Strayed 

Women Mean Business: Over 500 Insights from Extraordinary Leaders to Spark your Success by Edie Fraser, Robyn Freeman Spizman, and Andi Simon, PhD 

Bossypants by Tina Fey 

Finding Me by Viola Davis 

You are Only Just Beginning by Morgan Harper Nichols 

If you think there’s a book missing from this list, let us know! 

Feel free to comment on this post or tag us on LinkedIn to share the book you’re currently reading. Let’s start a conversation! Which book are you reading first? 

Attorney Spotlight: Louise Kennedy to present NSTC Program on How Non-Patent IP Protection Can Increase the Value of your Company

10 January 2024

Your company’s intellectual property may be one of your most valuable assets. But how do you go about protecting that asset? What intellectual property do you have in your business and how can you protect it? The North Shore Technology Council has invited Louise Kennedy, the West Hill Founder, to lead a program titled IP is Not Just Patents. Join Louise for a FREE lunch-hour zoom on Thursday, January 25th, from 12-1 pm. Register here today. Both NSTC members and non-members are welcome to attend.

This program will discuss how using copyright, trademark, and trade secret protection can increase the value of your company. Louise will also walk through the steps required to protect non-patent intellectual property assets. These include copyright and trademark filings, as well as company policies. The discussion will cover the role of contracts for routine business transactions in preserving these rights. Finally, Louise will walk through typical IP-related questions in M&A due diligence and why you should ask them or be prepared to answer them.

About the North Shore Technology Council

The NSTC hosts unique learning/networking events for innovators, entrepreneurs, service providers and career-seekers north of Boston – and beyondconnecting them with global experts across technology and the sciences – and each other – to build knowledge and foster collaboration that drives personal and business growth. Find out more about the NSTC and its membership here.

About Louise Kennedy

Louise Leduc Kennedy is the founding attorney of West Hill Technology Counsel. She has extensive experience advising technology companies on intellectual property and strategic matters. She is passionate about service agreements and ensuring her clients understand the legal jargon in their agreements so they are legally protected and positioned for growth. Louise loves working with innovative women and their entrepreneurial businesses.

Prior to forming the firm, Ms. Kennedy worked as in-house counsel at IBM Corporation for 9 years. During this time she supported the Global Sales and Distribution Group, IBM Business Consulting Services as well as the Lotus brand within IBM Software Group. Her responsibilities included the structure and negotiation of complex e-marketplace offerings as well as supply-chain management and e-procurement software alliances.

Louise received her B.A. in Economics from Smith College and her J.D., with honors, from the University of Connecticut School of Law. 

Best Lawyers Names West Hill to 2024 Best Law Firms® list

11 December 2023

West Hill is pleased to announce our firm has been recognized in the 2024 edition of Best Lawyers “Best Law Firms®” as a Boston Tier 3 firm in Litigation and Intellectual Property. Firms included in the “Best Law Firms” rankings are recognized for excellence and have impressive ratings from clients and peers. 

“We are both delighted and proud to be awarded this designation and recognized for our firm’s expertise in handling intellectual property disputes. There has been a steady increase in the use of arbitration provisions in software development and other technology agreements. Our technical, contract, and IP expertise allows us to handle these matters effectively and efficiently,” said Louise Leduc Kennedy, Founding Attorney, West Hill. 

According to Best Lawyers, achieving a tiered ranking signals a unique combination of quality law practice and breadth of legal expertise. Ranked firms, presented in three tiers, are recognized on a national and regional scale. Firms that receive a tier designation reflect the highest level of respect a firm can earn among other leading lawyers and clients from the same communities and practice areas.  

For the West Hill Technology Counsel ranking click here.

About Best Law Firms List

For the official press release for the 14th edition of Best Lawyers® and the Best Law Firms click here. For more information about  Best Lawyers and the Best Law Firms list, click here.  

About West Hill

West Hill Technology Counsel is a boutique business and technology law firm. Providing proactive practical legal advice to help solve problems before they arise. Our clients are new and growing businesses that create or leverage technology as a core part of their business model.  

Attorney Spotlight: Boston magazine Selects Shehla Syed to 2023 Top Lawyers List

1 December 2023

West Hill is pleased to announce that Shehla Syed has been named to the Boston magazine Top Lawyers™ 2023 list. Shehla has been recognized for excellence in Intellectual Property Law. This annual accolade, initiated in 2021, is designed to highlight outstanding legal talent in the region. Attorneys have the opportunity to nominate their peers in specific areas of expertise, with the rankings determined through peer voting and an advisory board.

“I am honored to be named a Top Lawyer by Boston magazine alongside so many great peers also recognized on this year’s list,” said Shehla Syed.

Shehla has also been recognized by Best Lawyers (2023) and Super Lawyers (since 2019) in her areas of expertise.

Click here to view Shehla Syed’s listing.

About Shehla Syed

Shehla Syed is a West Hill Shareholder and IP Strategist specializing in Intellectual Property, Litigation and Alternative Dispute Resolution. Ms. Syed counsels clients onhttps://www.bostonmagazine.com/lawyers all aspects of their intellectual property – trademarks, copyrights, patents and trade secrets – to help them maximize the value and enforceability of their content, brands and technology.

About Boston magazine Top Lawyers List

Click here to view the complete list of 2023 Top Lawyers. The December issue of Boston magazine featuring the highly anticipated 2023 Top Lawyers list is now available in print and online.

About West Hill

West Hill Technology Counsel is a boutique business and technology law firm. Providing proactive, practical legal advice to help solve problems before they arise. Our clients are new and growing businesses that create or leverage technology as a core part of their business model. 

Pushing Edges. Innovative Women on a Mission: Technology for the Greater Good

24 October 2023

On Thursday, October 19th, at the Ferncroft Country Club in Middleton, the North Shore Technology Council (NSTC), held its Second Annual Women in Technology Forum: Women on a Mission –Technology for the Greater Good. Louise Kennedy, West Hill’s Founding Attorney, moderated the panel of inspiring women who discussed their entrepreneurial journeys and mission-driven technology businesses.

The Speakers and Their Missions

The evening started with an inspiring keynote from Erika Ebbel Angle, CEO of Ixcela focused on “Pushing Edges” with stories from her personal and professional journeys. “The combined energies that you spend pushing your edges will help you gain the confidence that it takes to do other things. You set your standards and push your limits, and those will end up defining your edges.” By pushing her edges, Ms. Angle founded Science from Scientists, became Miss Massachusetts, and started Ixcela, a biotech company that creates personalized wellness programs focused on gut microbiome health.

Louise Kennedy introduced the panel and told the story of the West Hill Mission. Part of the West Hill Mission is disrupting the status quo by challenging the traditional hallmarks and metrics of law firm and attorney success. “The firm remains committed to supporting and elevating women in the legal community and the technology businesses we work with,” said Louise. 

The packed room was buzzing as the panel answered questions and told their own stories of disrupting the status quo and pushing their edges. The panel included: Kathleen Connors, Founder and President of Voltrek, Ioana Knopf, CEO and Founder at Arrakis Materials, Kerry Love, CEO/President of Sunflower Therapeutics, and Donna Brezinski, CEO of Little Sparrow Technologies.

The NSTC and the Event Sponsors

The evening concluded with the NSTC President, Gene Wong, recognizing and paying tribute to, past NSTC President, Tracey Curley, who is currently CEO at iSpecimen. For more information on the North Shore Technology Counsel please follow the NSTC on LinkedIn and visit NSTC.org.

West Hill Technology Counsel is a proud supporter of the NSTC along with the following sponsors of this event: Endicott College School of Science & Technology, Colin & Erika Angle Center for Entrepreneurship, Cohn Reznick, Applied Materials, Bond Building, and Green Path Strategies.

  • NSTC Women in Technology Forum Panel
    NSTC Women in Technology Forum Panel
  • Ferncroft Country Club NSTC Women on a Mission Oct 2023
    Ferncroft Country Club NSTC Women on a Mission Oct 2023
  • Shehla Syed, Wendy Sabin, Kathleen Shaffer and Kim Biggs from West Hill
  • Louise Kennedy, Kathleen Shaffer, Shehla Syed, Wendy Sabin, Kim Biggs, Brendan Kennedy and Tom Kennedy at the West Hill table.
    Louise Kennedy, Kathleen Shaffer, Shehla Syed, Wendy Sabin, Kim Biggs, Brendan Kennedy and Tom Kennedy at the West Hill table.
  • Erika Angle, Keynote
    Erika Angle, CEO of Ixcela, delivering the keynote
  • Erika Angle, Keynote on Pushing Edges
    Erika Angle, Keynote on Pushing Edges
  • Louise Kennedy hosting and introucing the panel
  • Louise Kennedy introducing the panel
  • Louise Kennedy, Founding Attorney, West Hill Forum Host
    Louise Kennedy, hosting the NSTC Women in Tech Forum
  • Ioana Knopf, CEO and Founder at Arrakis Materials,
    Panelist: Ioana Knopf, CEO and Founder at Arrakis Materials,
  • Kathleen Connors, Founder and President of Voltrek
    Panelist: Kathleen Connors, Founder and President of Voltrek
  • Kerry Love, CEO/President of Sunflower Therapeutics,
    Panelist: Kerry Love, CEO/President of Sunflower Therapeutics,
  • Panelist: Donna Brezinski, CEo of Little Sparrow Technologies
  • Louise Kennedy, Founder and CEO of West Hill introducing the NSTC Women in Technology Forum Panel
    Louise Kennedy, Founder and CEO of West Hill introducing the NSTC Women in Technology Forum Panel
  • Panelist: Kathleen Connors
  • Andrew Noble and Brendan Kennedy at the West Hill table
    Andrew Noble and Brendan Kennedy at the West Hill table
  • Gene Wong NSTC President honoring past president Tracey Curley
    Gene Wong NSTC President honoring past president Tracey Curley
  • Tracey Curley, current CEO at iSpecimen.
    Tracey Curley, current CEO at iSpecimen.
  • NSTC Women in Technology Forum Women on a Mission Technology for the Greater Good
    NSTC Women in Technology Forum Women on a Mission
  • Tracey Curley, iSpecimen CEO
    Tracey Curley, NSTC Past President and current iSpecimen CEO
  • NSTC Women in Technology Forum
    NSTC Women in Technology Forum
  • North Shore Technology Council Women in Technology Forum
    North Shore Technology Council Women in Technology Forum
  • West Hill Mission
  • West Hill Program Guide Ad

Attorney Spotlight: Shehla Syed named to Super Lawyers 2023 edition

18 October 2023

About Super Lawyers

West Hill is pleased to announce that Shehla Syed was recognized by Super Lawyers® for Intellectual Property. Super Lawyers is an exclusive list of top-rated attorneys in specific practice areas who were selected after a thorough evaluation of numerous criteria. No more than five percent of attorneys in a state are named Super Lawyers.

“I appreciate the honor of being named a ‘Super Lawyer’, and congratulate my peers also recognized on this year’s list,” said Shehla Syed.

This marks the fifth consecutive year Shehla has been selected as an honoree in Massachusetts since 2019. Super Lawyers select attorneys using a patented multiphase selection process. Peer nominations and evaluations are combined with independent research.

About Shehla Syed

Shehla is a West Hill Shareholder and IP Strategist specializing in Intellectual Property, Litigation and Alternative Dispute Resolution. Ms. Syed counsels clients on all aspects of their intellectual property – trademarks, copyrights, patents and trade secrets – to help them maximize the value and enforceability of their content, brands and technology.

Shehla is a member of the Women’s Bar Association of Massachusetts, the Boston Patent Law Association and the New England Muslim Bar Association, for which she was one of the founding members. Shehla has also served on the Community Ethics Committee at the Division of Medical Ethics of the Harvard Medical School which provides ethics feedback to Harvard teaching hospitals.

About West Hill

West Hill Technology Counsel is a boutique business and technology law firm. Providing proactive, practical legal advice to help solve problems before they arise. Our clients are new and growing businesses that create or leverage technology as a core part of their business model.

About Super Lawyers

For more information on Super Lawyers, a part of Thomson Reuters, click here.

West Hill Proudly Supports the Million Dollar Women Symposium

10 October 2023

The Enterprise Center at Salem State University hosted the Million Dollar Women Symposium at the Hawthorne Hotel on September 29th. West Hill Technology Counsel is a legacy sponsor of this event that celebrated 15 years of spotlighting women entrepreneurs who have achieved a million dollars in revenue per year on the North Shore. 

Million Dollar Women Panelists

As a past Million Dollar Woman panelist, Louise Kennedy was invited to introduce the panel of four honorees. The panel included: Rajia Abedelaziz, CEO of invisaWear, Natalie Blue and Madelene Pario, Co-Founders of the Artful Life Counseling Center & Studio and Jeysi Zuniga, President and CEO of Synergy Contracting, Inc.

Abdelaziz’s company sells smart jewelry and accessories with safety technology hidden inside. Her mission is to prevent sexual assault, as currently one in five women are sexually assaulted at some point in their lifetimes.

Blue and Pario’s center, The Artful Life, is a unique mental health counseling practice and studio in Salem. They utilize expressive-arts therapy and other holistic interactive methods as an affordable alternative to traditional mental health counseling.

Zuniga’s Lawrence-based company provides environmental remediation, demolition, painting, and construction services. She has worked in a variety of fields including real estate and biotechnology.

Keynote

The keynote speaker was Rhonda Kallman, Founder & CEO of Boston Harbor Distillery. Kallman has nearly four decades of experience in the alcoholic beverages industry. She is widely considered one of the a national thought leader in this traditionally male-dominated industry.

About the Enterprise Center

Laura Swanson, the Executive Director of the Enterprise Center and also the North Shore Alliance for Economic Development, and her team organizes the event annually to spotlight successful women business owners and inspire future women entrepreneurs in and around Boston.

  • Louise Kennedy from West Hill Moderating Panel at Million Dollar Women Symposium
    Louise Kennedy from West Hill introducing the Million Dollar Women Symposium panel.
  • Shehla Syed, Louise Kennedy, Jennica Holoquist, Wendy Sabin, Suzanne Turcotte and Kathleen Shaffer at the West Hill Table for the Million Dollar Women Symposium
    Shehla Syed, Louise Kennedy, Jennica Holoquist, Wendy Sabin, Suzanne Turcotte and Kathleen Shaffer at the West Hill Table for the Million Dollar Women Symposium.
  • Louise Kennedy Million Dollar Women Symposium Panel Moderator
  • West Hill Sponsors Million Dollar Women Symposium
  • Wendy Sabin and Louise Kennedy from West Hill and entrepreneur Jessica Moody from Moody's Gifts at the Million Dollar Women Symposium
    Wendy Sabin (West Hill), Jessica Moody (Moody’s Gifts), and Louise Kennedy (West Hill)
  • Louise Kennedy, Mabelyn Lopez, Laura Swanson, Jeysi Zuniga, Nathalie Blue, Madelene Pario, Rajia Abedelaziz and Alvania Lopez


Attorney Spotlight: Shehla Syed named to 2024 edition of Best Lawyers 

17 August 2023

West Hill is pleased to announce Shehla Syed was recognized by Best Lawyers® in their 2024 edition for Litigation – Intellectual Property. Since it was first published in 1983, Best Lawyers follows a peer-reviewed process recognizing lawyers in the U.S. who are demonstrating professional excellence in private practice. Best Lawyers has earned the respect of the profession, the media, and the public as a reliable, unbiased source of legal referrals. The selected lawyers are reviewed by their peers based on professional expertise and undergo an authentication process.

About Shehla Syed

Shehla is a Shareholder and IP Strategist specializing in Intellectual Property, Litigation and Alternative Dispute Resolution. Ms. Syed counsels clients on all aspects of their intellectual property – trademarks, copyrights, patents and trade secrets – to help maximize the value and enforceability of their content, brands and technology.

Shehla is a member of the Women’s Bar Association of Massachusetts, Boston Patent Law Association and the New England Muslim Bar Association, for which she was one of the founding members. Shehla has also served on the Community Ethics Committee at the Division of Medical Ethics of the Harvard Medical School which provides ethics feedback to Harvard teaching hospitals.

About West Hill

West Hill Technology Counsel is a boutique business and technology law firm. Providing pro-active, practical legal advice to help solve problems before they arise. Our clients are new and growing businesses that create or leverage technology as a core part of their business model.

About Best Lawyers

For the list and more information on Best Lawyers, click here.

West Hill Selected to Mass Lawyers Weekly Inaugural Empowering Women Awards List

7 August 2023

West Hill is proud to be recognized in the inaugural Empowering Women Awards list by Mass Lawyers Weekly. We congratulate fellow recipients for their shared commitment to the support and advancement of women in the legal community.

The Empowering Women Award recognizes a law firm’s commitment to hiring and promoting women, providing mentoring and opportunities for professional advancement to women attorneys, and establishing programs and policies to help women attorneys thrive professionally.

“We are both delighted and proud to be awarded this designation and recognized for our firm’s continued commitment to supporting and elevating women in the legal community,” said Louise Leduc Kennedy, Founding Attorney, West Hill. 

A Better Way to Practice Law

West Hill was founded on and remains committed to hiring and professional development for women attorneys and support staff.  Louise Kennedy established West Hill in 2008, after working in the Boston office of a regional law firm and as in-house counsel at IBM. When Louise attended her 10th law school reunion, she was the mother of two daughters and was distressed to learn how many women in her class had abandoned the practice of law because the pressures of large firm practice were incompatible with the needs of a growing family. Louise was looking for a better way to practice law and allow attorneys to integrate their commitments to family. She created a cutting-edge law practice that is dynamic, challenging, and innovative.   

West Hill Values

Louise built a team of motivated and upbeat legal professionals looking for flexibility while still practicing law at a high level. West Hill values innovation, integrity, open and honest communication, and diversity. These values shape the positive and inclusive firm culture. West Hill believes – and clients have affirmed – that happy lawyers = happy clients.   

Certified Women-Owned Business

West Hill is a WBENC- and SBA-certified women-owned business actively redefining the concept of private law practice. Diverse hiring practices are important to West Hill and many of its clients.

Empowering Women Awards

For more information about Mass Lawyers Weekly and the Empowering Women Award list, click here.

The support and empowerment of women is a critical component of the West Hill vision and mission

ATTORNEY SPOTLIGHT: Louise Kennedy Speaking at the Werth Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation

20 June 2023

Louise Leduc Kennedy has been invited to speak at the Werth Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation F3 Summer Conversations in Entrepreneurial Leadership series at the University of Connecticut. She is an alumna of the University of Connecticut School of Law and will address the cohort of First Year Female Founders.  

The Werth Innovator F3 Cohort pilot launched in 2020 to address the gender gap that exists in the business world when it comes to female-founded ventures. This cohort of Werth Innovators was selected at the beginning of the fall semester from a pool of first-year female-identifying students. The program focuses on building self-confidence through mentorship and peer networking at the beginning of their college career. 

The most dangerous phrase in the language is, “We’ve always done it this way.” 

Louise has been inspired by this quote from Grace Hopper, a pioneer in computer science and mathematics, and it sums up her approach to creating a unique business and technology law firm.  In her conversation with the F3 cohort, Louise will share her story of stepping off the large law firm/in-house path to launch West Hill. Since its founding, West Hill has sought to retain the best parts of sophisticated legal practice, such as constant learning, deep and practical knowledge in its areas of expertise, and commitment to superior client service. But Louise and her team have also worked hard to replace many parts of the typical law firm that weren’t working. The firm’s vision, mission, and values and a commitment to supporting its team members’ commitments to family, community, and self. Louise will discuss her journey of reimagining her industry for the better and not getting bogged down in the way things have always been done.   

West Hill is a certified woman-owned business, actively redefining the concept of private law practice. Diverse hiring practices are important to West Hill and many of West Hill’s clients either because of a corporate commitment to diversity or because hiring a certified woman-owned business assists them in attaining supplier diversity goals. 

The support and empowerment of women – including young women entrepreneurs — is a critical component of the West Hill’s success.

  

https://entrepreneurship.uconn.edu/wi/

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