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Last week, young women attending universities throughout Missouri spent a few days at University of Missouri-St. Louis for the 21st Century Leadership Academy. This program is put on by the Sue Shear Institute for Women in Public Life. These inspirational students attended different workshops and heard many different speakers encouraging them to play an active role in their communities. Mathis, Marifian and Richter, Ltd. was happy to be a Governor-Level Sponsor for the keynote dinner again this year. We are happy to support because we know that these programs truly do make a difference to those who attend.


Natalie Lorenz, an associate attorney at MMR, attended the week-long program in 2008, and she will never forget the impact that the Sue Shear Institute made on her life.

“The Sue Shear Institute for Women in Public Life is an organization encouraging women’s civic engagement. Every year, the Institute puts on a week-long conference in May for college-age young women called the 21st Century Leadership Academy. It takes place at UMSL, where the Sue Shear Institute is located. I participated in the Academy in 2008, and it was very inspiring; I decided to go to law school after attending. One of the great things about the Academy is that it costs the participants $0 to attend. All funds are either supplied by the state or raised through private donations. The participants are hand-picked from each public university in Missouri, and it is always an impressive group of young women (if I do say so myself!).”

“The week-long program is very inspiring and empowering, and it means a great deal to me that Mathis, Marifian & Richter has supported it each year since I first asked in 2014. The Institute has encouraged and supported young females like me since its founding in 1997 and needs the support of both individuals and businesses like MMR to continue doing so. I can honestly say that I would not be the same person I am today without having been through the 21st Century Leadership Academy and hope that the Institute, through the support of our community in return for all it has done for us, can continue to inspire young women as it did me almost ten years ago, and still does to this day.”

“MMR has been exceedingly supportive of the Institute and has asked for additional ways to support its efforts. Now the firm also sponsors an additional program (the Affinity Dinner) every year, on its own initiative. I am proud that the firm takes pride in its participation in this program, and was so proactive in asking for additional ways it could help. It is truly a blessing to be involved with both the Sue Shear Institute and MMR.” – Natalie Lorenz

Click here to learn more about the Sue Shear Institute for Women in Public Life and the 21st Century Leadership Academy.