1 min read

Season 4, Episode 50

Fighting for an opportunity: The first independent female labor lawyer



Guest Name:

Joyce Goldstein

Guest Website:


Guest Social Media:






Labor lawyer Joyce Goldstein of Joyce Goldstein & Associates appeared on the America’s Work Force Union Podcast and discussed becoming the first female owner of a union focused law firm in the U.S., and the struggles she endured as she built the business.

As a lawyer, Goldstein loved working with unions, but she hated working for someone else. This led her to open her own law firm and become the first female-owned union-sided law firm in the country. Goldstein admitted this was not easy. During this time,  women did not work in unions due in part to a negative stigma surrounding women in organized labor. She had to develop a thick skin, which benefited her in the long-term. However, early on, it was an everyday battle to deal with discrimination. 

In order to get her first client, she agreed to barter her legal services for office space with Communication Workers of America Local 4340. The deal helped Goldstein get introduced to more unions and potential clients. She also traveled to different picket lines, where she eventually earned the business of new clients.

As time progressed, she overcame discrimination and gained more clients because she earned their respect and proved herself in the union landscape.

Listen to the entire episode to learn more.

America’s Work Force is the only daily labor podcast in the US and has been on the air since 1993, supplying listeners with useful, relevant input into their daily lives through fact-finding features, in-depth interviews, informative news segments and practical consumer reports. America’s Work Force is committed to providing an accessible venue in which America's workers and their families can hear discussion on important, relevant topics such as employment, healthcare, legislative action, labor-management relations, corporate practices, finances, local and national politics, consumer reports and labor issues.

America’s Work Force Union Podcast is brought to you in part by our sponsors: AFL-CIO, American Federation of Government Employees, American Federation of Musicians Local 4, American Alliance for Manufacturing, Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield, Columbus/Central Ohio Building and Construction Trades Council, Communication Workers of America, International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers, International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers Local 50, International Brotherhood of Teamsters, International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers, International Union of Bricklayers and Allied Crafts, International Union of Painters and Allied Trades District Council 6, Ironworkers Great Lakes District Council, The Labor Citizen newspaper, Laborers International Union of The National Labor Office of Blue Cross and Blue Shield, North America, North Coast Area Labor Federation, Ohio Federation of Teachers, Survey and Ballot Systems, United Labor Agency, United Steelworkers.


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