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White seeks to bring diversity to legal profession

Danielle White - Rockwell Automation

Danielle White – Rockwell Automation

Danielle White knew from a young age that she wanted to be a lawyer.

“I realized I was pretty good at negotiating with people based off experience negotiating with my sisters,” White said. “They were older than me and I had to nudge my way into getting to do things.”

When she moved to Milwaukee from Cincinnati in 2008 to start at Marquette University Law School, White planned to put her knack for negotiating and her general amiability to use by pursuing a career in sports law. But those plans changed following her second year of law school, when she got an opportunity for an internship at Rockwell Automation.

White started at Rockwell in 2010 and has been with the company ever since. After graduating in 2011, she went to work in-house at Rockwell as legal counsel.

In her role, White performs securities work, which over the years has included work in commercial law, contracts and negotiations, as well as mergers and acquisitions.

White recently completed one of her biggest projects to date: negotiating a $25 million deal with an international customer, a first of its kind for the company, she said.

Aside from her day-to-day work at Rockwell, White sits on a number of boards, including the Wisconsin Association of African American Lawyers. White said the group has let her devote her energies to a cause that’s close to her heart: the diversification of the legal field.

In 2015, White became involved in Wisconsin State Bar’s Diversity Clerkship Program, which provides summer internship opportunities to Marquette law students from diverse backgrounds.

“I’ve found it very rewarding for both the company and the intern we receive for the summer,” she said.

Nicole Willette, corporate counsel at Franklin Energy, has worked alongside White at the Association of Corporate Counsel-Wisconsin chapter, where White serves as secretary and Willette is a past president.

“Danielle’s service to the community makes her an asset to the state of Wisconsin,” Willette said. “When help is needed she shows up. … I am excited to see what she accomplishes in her career.”

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