13 Nov 2023

Two Bowditch & Dewey attorneys named Top Women of Law

MSI's Massachusetts law member Bowditch & Dewey is delighted to announce that Samantha McDonald and Lynette Paczkowski were named Top Women of Law by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly.

Samantha McDonald and Lynette Paczkowski, both partners at the firm, received the award that honors exceptional female attorneys who are pioneers, educators, trail blazers, and role models.

Samantha McDonald and Lynette Paczkowski

McDonald concentrates on business and real estate law at Bowditch, regularly steering commercial real estate deals to closing. She represents both buyers and sellers of commercial real estate and advises property owners on landlord-tenant disputes and environmental issues. She enjoys helping clients deal with legal matters that they can’t always assess on their own and helping them achieve their goals.

Paczkowski, a past president of the Worcester County Bar Association, refocused her practice in 2019 from general litigation to domestic relations and probate litigation. She now routinely helps people navigate divorces, child custody issues, prenuptial agreements, trust disputes, estate administration claims, and breach of fiduciary duty cases. She also continues to represent companies and individuals in commercial litigation.

“Both of these women are not only first-rate lawyers, but also extraordinary people with a passionate commitment to client service and helping others,” said John Shoro, managing partner at Bowditch & Dewey. “I am delighted that they are receiving the recognition they deserve.”

McDonald has worked tirelessly in the community. She is a former board chair of You Inc. of Worcester, a behavioral health and education agency serving at-risk families. She serves on the board of the Worcester Regional Research Bureau, Inc., as a trustee of the New England Botanic Garden at Tower Hill and as a corporator for the Greater Worcester Community Foundation, the Worcester Art Museum, and Music Worcester.

She’s volunteered for Community Legal Aid, served as its annual fund campaign chair, and volunteered often as a lawyer for the day at the group’s small claims court assistance program. She also spent years as a Girl Scout leader, including taking teens to the Dominican Republic to help build a community hospital.

She graduated from Suffolk University Law School and earned her bachelor’s degree from Clark University.

Paczkowski, highly respected by her peers, gets most of her clients through referrals, a testament to her problem-solving skills and judgment. She prides herself on her empathy, trying to protect her clients’ interests as they undergo some of the most stressful, challenging times of their lives.

Widely regarded as a model legal leader, Paczkowski devotes her spare time to mentoring young lawyers and giving back to the community. She was recently appointed by Gov. Maura Healey to serve on the state’s Judicial Nominating Commission and elected to the Executive Council of the National Conference of Bar Presidents. She is also chair of the board of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Massachusetts and MetroWest.

She is active with Community Legal Aid, sitting on its board, chairing the group’s Access to Justice Campaign for the past two years, and volunteering as a lawyer for the day through the agency’s Probate and Family Court program.

A graduate of Boston College Law School, she earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Notre Dame. She currently serves as president of the Notre Dame Alumni Association’s Worcester County club.