Women in Power: Jennifer, VP & Deputy General Counsel
This March, we’re honoring Women’s History Month by celebrating female firsts and spotlighting our female leaders.
In this post, we’re sharing Jennifer’s story. Jennifer is our Vice President & Deputy General Counsel. She’s served with ACE Cash Express (now named Populus Financial Group, Inc.) for seven years. In her story, Jennifer shares the hardworking mindset she maintains to do her best work, her perspective on advocating for working parents as a leader, and more.
Q: Can you talk about your journey and how you got to this level of leadership?
I started my career at an international law firm where I gained a variety of experience. After taking the job at Populus, I hit the ground running and worked hard to learn the business and make a difference serving my internal clients. I strive to bring the same enthusiasm to work each day that I did on my first day.
Q: Looking back at your journey so far, is there a story or a moment that’s impacted you that you could share?
Every time I work in an ACE store, I feel so proud of the relationships our employees have with our customers and the outstanding customer service they provide every day. It motivates me to work even harder for both our employees and our customers.
Q: To you, what does it mean to be a leader?
Being a leader means setting an example that others want to follow.
**Q: What does it mean to you to be a female leader? Do you have anything to share on your perspective of being a female leader in your field? **
The legal field has come a long way in terms of supporting women leaders. Not that long ago, women were advised never to talk about their families or home responsibilities at work. I make a conscious effort to do the opposite and to bring my authentic self to work every day. I also think of being a working mom as a superpower instead of a constant grind. It helps that I am an excellent compartmentalizer. My goal is to be a rock star at whatever I am doing at the time—whether it’s working or parenting, I give it my full attention until it’s time to switch gears. As a leader, I try to use my seat at the table to represent working parents.
Q: What advice would you give a young woman with aspirations to get where you are?
Make sure you get real world work experience before you decide to go to law school.
Q: Who is a woman in your life who has influenced you?
Judge Barbara Lynn led the charge to open the door for women to be hired by the big law firms in Dallas. Without her, I likely would not have had the wide variety of options that I was lucky enough to have coming out of law school.
Q: This year, we’re excited to see our country’s first female Vice President in office. Can you share an impactful first for you in your work life?
My first trial after maternity leave was when my eldest daughter was four months old. It was a long trial that lasted several weeks in East Texas. I was working for Clayton Bailey, an incredibly supportive partner at the law firm. Clayton let me limit my travel to a maximum of three nights away at a time, even during the trial. I will never forget the tremendous kindness he and the rest of the trial team showed to me so that I had the flexibility to prove to myself that I could be both a mom and a trial lawyer.
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