Partner, Bile-Aka, Brizoua-Bi & Associés, Ivory Coast.

Isabelle Sokolo-Boni

Joining an internationally renowned law firm and rising through the ranks until being made a partner years later, was not a dream or the ultimate goal, but loyalty and commitment forced the destiny. The challenge remains enormous in a male-dominated environment where women are often considered less competent. "You have to believe in it," a senior colleague in the profession used to tell me when I was preparing for the bar exam, and it remains till date, my leitmotif to go far.

The spirit of commitment and responsibility must prevail at all times, i.e., practicing the profession as if we were the last resort and not relegate oneself to the background by thinking that there may be someone wiser to correct one's mistakes. In law as in medicine, our clients entrust us with their lives, and we are responsible for saving them from any situation; for instance, when they are facing detention, provide them with the best advice to compensate their damages, avoid the pitfalls of a tendentious transaction, etc.

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