It was ironic for me that at a bar association meeting on labor & employment law yesterday, that I learned that Ruth Pulda, a partner at Livington, Adler, Pulda, Meiklejohn & Kelly, passed away at the much-too-early age of 53. For me, she was one of the central figures in employment law in Connecticut representing employees. For many years now, she had courageously battled cancer and her tenacity in doing so was emblematic of the way she lived her life. She had a passion about the law and her presence will be missed by attorneys on both sides of the "fence". A profile of her is still available at her firm’s website.
The full obituary can also be found in the Hartford Courant but this portion about her law practice stuck out for me:
Leader, educator, mentor and advocate to a generation of Connecticut lawyers and on behalf of women’s rights, civil rights and social justice. Ruth’s law career spanned twenty-five years as a named partner in the "plucky little law firm" of Livingston, Adler, Pulda, Meiklejohn and Kelly. She loved a good fight and won more than she lost. She has been recognized by the Connecticut Bar as one of the top lawyers in Connecticut and received two awards very important to her life’s work: The Elizabeth Blackwell Award from Connecticut N.O.W. in 2003 for her "tenacious commitment for health care for women" and the 2006 One Woman Making a Difference award from CWEALF (CT’s Womens’ Education and Legal Fund).
Ruth previously served as legal counsel to CWEALF, as chair of the State Permanent Commission on the Status of Women, and co-founded and taught the Women’s Rights Clinic at the University of Connecticut School of Law. Devoted friend and confidant to too many to mention she will be missed every day, but her impact on so many people and on so many issues will long endure.
One of my first trials many years ago was against Ruth and her firm. I’ll remember the zeal and enthusiasm she showed for the law and her dedication to doing things correctly and professionally. In the ensuing years, I learned further of her reputation in the field and I recall referring several individuals to her for representation without reservation.
And ultimately, I pay tribute to Ruth with a compliment that many attorneys hope to emulate: She fought hard for her clients and did good work for them, she was respected by her opponents, and she left the area of employment law in Connecticut better off for her involvement.