Verrill’s Gene Dahmen, Legal Trailblazer, to be Honored with Boston Bar Association Lifetime Achievement Award

May 22, 2024 Press Releases

BOSTON, Massachusetts – Verrill’s Gene Dahmen will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Boston Bar Association (BBA) during their annual Law Day Celebration on June 13 at Boston Symphony Hall.

A trailblazer in the legal field, Dahmen was the first woman to be elected President of BBA, making her the 64th successor to John Adams in that position. Following her election, Dahmen dubbed herself ‘Abigail’s revenge’ as she was determined that her tenure as President would fulfill a promise Abigail Adams had made to her husband, John Adams, in March of 1776, as he wrote the United States Constitution: “If particular care and attention is not paid to the ladies, we are determined to foment a rebellion and will not hold ourselves bound by any laws in which we have no voice or representation.”

And foment a rebellion on behalf of women and minorities she did, and still does. Dahmen approached her presidency with many familiar goals: to diversify the membership of the BBA with a focus on attracting new lawyers; the expansion of pro bono work; and most notably, supporting the wellbeing of lawyers during a fractured time for the legal community. Following her Presidency, she remained involved in the organization through the Boston Bar Foundation where she served on the Board and as the Grant’s committee co-chair from 1992-2000.

For her efforts, Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly named Dahmen as one of the 40 most powerful lawyers in Massachusetts. She has also served on the boards of numerous other law-related entities, including Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education (which she chaired), the Boston Bar Foundation, Massachusetts Legal Assistance Corporation, Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers, and the Virginia Law School Foundation. She served a six-year term on the first Court Management Advisory Board, appointed by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court to assist with judicial reform at the Trial Court.

Dahmen is one of the region's most prominent and widely respected practitioners in her field of domestic law. A vigorous advocate, sensitive counselor, and skilled negotiator with more than 30 years of experience, she is known for achieving excellent results for her clients in an efficient and collaborative manner. Although her practice encompasses the entire range of family law matters, she focuses primarily on cases involving complex business and financial issues. She is a strong supporter of alternative dispute resolution and works regularly with both mediators and arbitrators to settle disputes.

Dahmen is deeply involved in education and the arts, with music being a particular passion of hers . She is a Trustee of the New England Conservatory, the Boston Landmarks Orchestra, and the Longy School of Music, and is a Boston Symphony Orchestra Advisor. She also serves on the Foundation Board of Bridge Boston Charter School and is a trustee Emerita of both her undergraduate alma mater and the UVA Law School Foundation.

Dahmen received her undergraduate degree from Randolph-Macon Woman’s College, and her law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law. Dahmen was one of only three women in her law school class at the University of Virginia. She then went on to become the first female president of its alumni organization.