▶Labor and employment law
40 Under Class – 2017
There’s a common theme among the nominations for Suheily Natal Davis: This young attorney, a specialist in labor and employment law, is as respected for her legal talents as she is for the way in which she interacts with judges, attorneys, clients, and her peers.
This isn’t surprising. Not only has Davis built a name for herself in labor and employment law, she’s also become a dedicated volunteer for her community and profession, all while mentoring younger attorneys and serving as a role model for other women of color.
People like Dorothy Capers of National Express LLC, noticed Davis and her skill set early in her career. Capers said, “Her ability to navigate the government, private practice, and private corporations with such ease and maintaining the same level of work ethic and respect inside of each entity is a rarity.” Capers continued, “
Chastity Boyce, an attorney with Chicago’s Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, is typical of those who have nominated Davis for this honor, saying, “Suheily is one of those attorneys who is beloved by everyone she touches, from co-workers, to judges, opposing counsel, clients and outside counsel. In our field, that’s a feat all its own.”
But Davis has also fashioned a career filled with outstanding results for her clients.
“She is results-oriented,” Boyce said. “She never hesitates to lead teams and drive toward a result.”
Craig R. Thorstenson a partner at FordHarrison, worked with Davis very early in her career. Thorstenson said, “Suheily consistently performed above and beyond the normal experience for associates at her level. Suheily never said no to an assignment, always got the job done well, on time, and most importantly to the client’s satisfaction and delight.” These traits Thorstenson mentioned have followed her to McDonald’s Corporation.
Davis has worked as a close partner with her internal clients during several rounds of corporate restructuring and has successfully partnered with these clients to achieve results during a particularly busy time of growth for the Company.
At McDonald’s, Davis has also taken on complex litigation and has a knack for turning these difficult cases into favorable settlements for the company.
“Suheily has coupled her tenacious work ethic with a pragmatic, solution-focused approach to whatever legal issues she’s faced,” said Kwabena Appenteng with Chicago’s Littler. “Appenteng said that he never hesitates to call Davis when he has questions. This, Appenteng says, is one of the hallmarks of a skilled lawyer.
Davis’ advice is in demand because this labor specialist is not only a remarkably talented attorney, but also possesses the business acumen necessary to create solutions that put her clients in the best position.
“Suheily is one of the few lawyers I know who I am convinced will be leading a corporate legal department in the future, or sitting on a bench as a judge or leading a firm,” Appenteng said. “Her options are limitless because she is that talented.”
Davis does all this while also being one of the busiest volunteers for her profession and community. She sits on the board of directors of the Diverse Attorney Pipeline Program, the National Employment Law Council, the IEJF and together with her husband runs her own non-profit, The Perfect Cadence.
“Suheily was always the associate who I admired because she didn’t give up or stop working until she got it right,” said Tiffany Harper, with Chicago’s Grant Thornton. “As a junior associate, I admired and tried to live up to her standard of working hard and serving her community even more.”