Amy P. Lyons is a 2L (graduating in 2023) at American University Washington College of Law (AUWCL) where she is also completing a dual degree with American University’s School of International Service (SIS). She serves on her school’s Asian Pacific American Law Students Association (APALSA) board as the Social & Cultural Chair, is a member of the Alternative Dispute Resolution Honor Society (ADRHS), and is a staff writer for the Human Rights Brief. She is passionate about international human rights as well as peace and conflict resolution and aspires to work in the field of diplomacy.

She received dual degrees from the University of Maine where she studied International Business and International Security. Prior to law school, she worked as a paralegal at two large New England law firms and volunteered as a translator for an immigrant legal services organization. In her free time, she loves to explore the DMV’s greatest eateries and perfecting gluten-free baked goods.

Amy is a member of the Asian Pacific American Bar Association of DC (APABA-DC), National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA), Asian Pacific American Bar Association Educational Fund (AEF), and Association of Women in International Trade (WIIT).

When did you join the WBA?

Why did you join the Women’s Bar Association?
I joined the WBA to feel more connected to the legal field. I’m a first generation law student and I’ve been trying to find groups in the DC area that support its members and would lead to long-lasting friendships. I’ve been inspired by so many incredible female attorneys and wanted to learn how to become one myself so that I can give back as well. I moved from Maine and don’t know as many people in DC, so WBA felt right when I was trying to find more ways to get involved.

What benefits do you get from being a part of the WBA and why do you think others should join?
I already feel much more connected to DC and the legal profession. I also feel incredibly supported by the WBA. While I haven’t been a member for long, I’ve already received multiple emails and connections from other WBA members, and I feel as if I could truly reach out to anyone, and they’d be more than happy to connect.

Do you have a mentor/hero?
I am grateful to have many mentors and heroes. Of course, I must give a shout-out to my mother. Her incredible sense of ambition and determination while remaining selfless has always been an inspiration to me. I hope that I can become even an ounce of who she is.

I’m also so grateful to be able to say that my grandmother is a mentor and a hero for me. She has taught me how to be graceful while steadfast and that mentality has driven my passion for law and advocacy.

What words of advice do you have for women new to the profession?
Remember who you are and what you want. When I first arrived at law school, it was evident that there was a certain “law school career” that was the most prestigious or desired. However, I didn’t choose to attend law school to fit into a certain mold. I chose to attend law school so that I can become a better advocate. While law school is challenging, being certain of who I am and why I’m here has always helped me through even the most challenging of times.

What is the best advice you have received?
I have two pieces of advice I live by: (1) If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door, and (2) Don’t go to network, go to make friends. The first piece of advice is one of my favorites because it’s exemplary of how you can absolutely make opportunities for yourself. The second piece of advice has been helpful while I move through my career because I’ve made many valuable connections and genuine friendships from networking events. It’s surprising how much you may have in common with someone when you stop to look beyond what professional opportunities you see.