International Women's Day 2021

Feature 5: Erica Evans, Marissa Harrington, JD, and Mara Butler

March 16, 2021

During the month of March, we continue to celebrate International Women's Day 2021. Today we introduce three outstanding woman who have dedicated themselves to their roles within the legal services field. One has spent her entire career meeting the needs of law firms and their clients, one is an attorney who applies her legal expertise to ensure attorneys at trial perform at their peak, and one is a USMC veteran who has gone on to fulfill a leadership role in the areas of human resources and employee engagement. Erica Evans, Marissa Harrington, and Mara Butler represent IMS’s core values by exhibiting Integrity and earning the Trust, Credibility, and Respect of both peers and clients.

Erica Evans

Manager of Recruiting Services

Q: Why did you choose a career in the legal services industry?

A: I studied political science, previously worked for a law firm, and have always held an interest in the legal services field. I was drawn to the industry because of the dynamic environment, diverse career options, and growth opportunities.

Q: What are some challenges you experienced as a woman in your field?

A: In the past, I struggled with the fear of not being heard, simply due to my stature. To mitigate this concern, I plan, focus on the facts, while remaining passionate, and watch my demeanor. By preparing as much possible, I ensure I am exuding confidence. I remind myself to project my voice, make eye contact, and speak slowly and carefully.

Q: What advice would you give to women who are working or interested in working in your field?

A: Find a great mentor, especially someone who can help to build your professional confidence in the industry. Seek insights from someone who knows you and your goals, and whom you trust. Also, find opportunities to distinguish yourself early. Volunteer and never stop asking for opportunities to learn and to contribute.


Marissa Harrington, JD

Senior Trial Consultant

Q: Why did you choose a career in the legal services industry?

A: I began my legal career some 15 years ago practicing law and quickly realized I did not want to be a trial lawyer, and yet, I needed a position that would be just as interesting and dynamic. Luckily, I discovered the world of litigation consulting and have never looked back. As a trial consultant, I work on high-profile cases, collaborate with brilliant legal teams, and constantly expand my legal knowledge by working on a variety of cases involving different areas of law. The job is ever-changing, always interesting, and ripe with opportunities for me to grow both in my career and as a person.

Q: What are some challenges you experienced as a woman in your field?

A: There continues to be challenges that women distinctly suffer in the professional world, and the “Me Too” movement has made some of those challenges loud and clear. It is important that women always retain their confidence, know their worth, and refuse to let their voices be lost in any room.

Q: As a woman in the legal services industry, what are some experiences you’ve had on the job that made you feel empowered?

A: The best part of my job is being an integral component of both my internal IMS team and external trial teams. When the members of these groups come together to collaborate—and my ideas and the ideas of others are heard—it is empowering. We all join forces to create something bigger and better. Another instance in which I feel empowered is when I receive feedback from attorney clients who recognize not just the quality of my work but also my passion for meeting their needs and achieving optimal case outcomes.


Mara Butler

Employee Engagement Specialist

Q: Why did you choose a career in the legal services industry?

A: I joined the US Marine Corps right out of high school and was an avionics technician. After leaving the Marine Corps, I knew I wanted to pursue something different in the civilian sector. What this job was going to be, I had no idea! I knew I had to get my foot in the door somewhere, and I accepted a job at IMS as the office administrator. At IMS, I found my passion for planning events and initiatives. I pursued that interest by moving to the human resources department, where I became the employee engagement specialist.

Q: As a woman in the legal services industry, what are some experiences you’ve had on the job that made you feel empowered?

A: Being new to the corporate world, the human resources field, and the legal industry, I am so thankful for the guidance and help I've received from the amazing women around me at IMS. To assist with my career transition, I entered a mentorship program that I learned about through a resource that assists veterans. My mentor, Veronica Finch, a fellow veteran and human resources professional, helped me understand my field, identify and develop my skillset, and build my self-confidence.

Q: Of the many women throughout history who broke down gender stereotypes who do you admire most and why?

A: During the recent presidential inauguration, I was inspired by Amanda Gorman and her poem "The Hill We Climb.” I have heard this poem many times since, and it continues to speak to me. Gorman’s story is inspiring, and through her work as an activist and poet, she has built a platform that enables not only her voice to be heard but also the voices of others.

IMS Consulting & Expert Services

IMS Consulting & Expert Services delivers consultative trial and expert services for the most influential global firms. For nearly thirty years, the company has been dedicated to helping clients tell clear and persuasive stories that educate jurors and decision-makers. Through more than 20,000 cases and well over 1,000 trials, attorneys have trusted IMS to equip them with the perspective and tools they need to help their clients succeed. With offices in New York, Dallas, Oakland, and Pensacola, the company provides persuasion strategy, expert witness, jury consulting, trial graphics, and trial presentation services. IMS has been recognized as an industry leader by several notable publications, receiving nine consecutive rankings on the Inc. 5000 list, standing in ten categories of The National Law Journal’s “Best Of 2021” awards, and positioning in the National Law Review’s prestigious “Go-To Thought Leader” awards for three consecutive years. More at