Marci Eisenstein is the managing partner of Schiff Hardin LLP. She has spent the last 30 years defending major corporations against more than 100 class action challenges in federal and state courts nationwide, and is one of few lawyers in the country to try a nationwide consumer class action to verdict.
When Marci was elected managing partner in 2015, she became the first woman to hold this top post in the firm’s 150-year history. Under her leadership, Schiff Hardin was twice named an “Illinois Powerhouse” by Law360 in 2018 and 2019. Marci remains among only a handful of female managing partners in big law firms across the United States.
Marci is a strong mentor and champion for diversity in the legal profession. Having spent her entire professional legal career at Schiff Hardin, Marci helped found the firm’s Women’s Networking Group in 1998, which was created in recognition of the different avenues for developing business that women lawyers may take compared to their male counterparts. Since its launch, the group has hosted career advancement and mentoring programs, internal and external networking events, and a wide range of business development initiatives – all aimed at providing opportunities for women to become business rainmakers.
Marci was also a founding member of the firm’s Diversity Committee
in the early 2000s, recognizing that diversity produces the best thinking and results for clients. She personally reviews how client matters are staffed to ensure that opportunities are distributed fairly and that attorneys who have the skills to address a client’s needs are provided the opportunity to do so.
Under Marci’s leadership, Schiff Hardin has participated in the Mansfield Rule program for the third straight year, committing to increase diversity within its leadership ranks.
In 2019, the firm achieved Mansfield Certified Plus status for exceeding the requirements of the program. With physical and mental health at the forefront of the legal industry today, one of Marci’s signature initiatives has been to launch the firm’s first comprehensive wellness program.
Marci uses her role and platform to share her unique perspectives and learnings as a female leader in law, and to encourage others to follow her example. She regularly speaks at legal conferences around the country about law firm strategy and the importance of broadening opportunities to diverse professionals. In addition to practicing law, Marci is an active and longtime board member of the Illinois chapter of JDRF, the world’s leading organization funding type 1 diabetes research.