Out lawyer earns Women of Distinction award

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Out lawyer Angela Giampolo will be among the 25 businesswomen and one rising star honored as 2015 Women of Distinction.

 

“It was a total shock,” Giampolo said. “I woke up one day, it’s an ordinary Tuesday, and get this huge, overwhelming honor.”

Winners must be nominated by peers in the business community.

“I’ve seen so many mentors to me win this award,” Giampolo added.

A reception will take place from 5-8 p.m. Nov. 17 at Vie, 600 N. Broad St. Tickets cost $175.

The recognition highlights the region’s most influential businesswomen, according to the Philadelphia Business Journal, the award’s presenter.

The Journal added it was looking for “women who’ve made a difference in their communities, blazed a trail for the rest of us and are leaving a mark on Philadelphia business.” 

Giampolo grew up in Montreal and moved to Philadelphia to attend LaSalle University. She initially played college basketball in Atlanta, but when she blew out her knee as a 20-year-old, she needed to transfer schools.

From there, Giampolo attended law school and began working on human-rights issues. She said the proudest moment in her career happened in 2007 at the United Nations, where she felt personally and professionally impacted by her work with the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda to prosecute those responsible for the genocide in the 1990s.

She spent time living and working in Beijing and Tanzania, but always returned to Philadelphia.

“Philadelphia’s awesome,” Giampolo said. “Hands down, Philadelphia has the best of everything. In New York, it’s about who you know. In D.C., it’s about what you know. In Philadelphia, it’s all about what you do.”

Giampolo founded PhillyGayLawyer.com and started her own firm, Giampolo Law Group, in 2008 to provide a safe space for the LGBT community to seek legal assistance. She became interested in LGBT advocacy as an extension of her work in human rights. Her legal areas of specialty include LGBT, business, family, real-estate and international law. 

Giampolo writes the “Out Law” column for PGN. She also serves as chair of the Gay and Lesbian Lawyers of Philadelphia (GALLOP) and sits on the board of the Liberty City LGBT Democratic Club, the International Visitors Center and the National Adoption Center.