Kelly Culhane | Keeping It Real: How To Make a Difference for Yourself and Others

Kelly CulhaneKelly Rittenberry Culhane is the Founder and Managing Partner of Culhane Meadows, the largest full-service, women-owned law firm in the US. She is a member of the firm’s insurance and outsourcing practice groups, where she handles sourcing human resources, professional services, consultant functions, and risk management counseling. Kelly has over 20 years of experience advising clients on insurance and risk-management matters. Her authenticity makes her a trustworthy and reliable advisor to her clients.

As a former trial attorney at one of the world’s largest firms, Kelly represented individual accountants and the Big Three firms in complex regulatory matters and was appointed to serve on a task force for a Fortune 100 company advising on CPA regulatory issues. Since 2014, she has been recognized by her peers and clients as one of D Magazine’s Best Lawyers in Dallas.

Kelly has been named “First Person” by Womenetics, an organization focused on advancing women as business leaders. As a member of the Board of Directors for the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, she mentors and advocates for survivors of exploitation and human trafficking. Through her charitable contributions, Kelly makes a considerable difference for herself and her community.

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Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • Kelly Rittenberry Culhane’s history as a litigator and the journey to founding her law firm
  • How Kelly and her partners built and grew a disruptive law firm
  • The importance of taking risks and embracing change
  • Attracting attorneys who share your goals and values
  • Kelly’s passionate endeavors outside of her law firm
  • Advice for young attorneys: keep it real

In this episode…

Most lawyers want to create positive impact for themselves and others. But how do you do that when faced with daily responsibilities, a mountain of work, and constant pressure to bill hours?

After experiencing burnout from working 100-hour weeks at a global law firm, Kelly Rittenberry Culhane created an innovative law firm that defies traditional structures. She implemented an objective formulaic compensation system and established an environment that allowed women and diverse individuals to thrive. If you’re facing an internal battle and are struggling to take action, Kelly advises being realistic with yourself to gain the confidence to make profound decisions. By venturing out of your comfort zone, subverting established norms in the legal profession, and remaining humble, you can impact yourself and your clients.

In this episode of The Lawyer’s Edge Podcast, Elise Holtzman interviews Kelly Rittenberry Culhane, a Founder and the Managing Partner of Culhane Meadows, about making a difference by being true to yourself. Kelly talks about her involvement with YoungLives, how she attracts attorneys who share her firm’s values and goals, and her history as a litigator.

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Sponsor for this episode…

Today’s episode is brought to you by the Ignite Women’s Business Development Accelerator.

Ignite is an 8-month business development program created by women lawyers for women lawyers.

Ignite is not just a one-off seminar or a series of seminars. It’s a carefully designed business development program containing content coaching and a community of like-minded women who are committed to becoming rainmakers and supporting the retention and advancement of other women in the profession.

To learn more about Ignite, visit

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