Adjunct Professor Bettie Sousa (JD ’81) featured in N.C. Bar Association magazine

Adjunct Professor Bettie Sousa (JD ’81) was featured in the November 2017 issue of North Carolina Lawyer, the North Carolina Bar Association (NCBA) flagship magazine. Sousa authored the article, “‘Where She Has Practiced Her Entire Career’: Reflections On Coming a Long Way,“  which was first published at

Sousa’s article is a reaction to the appointment of back-to-back female presidents for the N.C. Bar Association and firm longevity but more broadly a reflection on being a women within the legal profession.

Within the article, Sousa speaks to her maturity experience within the workforce, “Trust me; I applaud the young women of today. Wearing their slimming, stretchy and comfortable clothing, they are enjoying the fruits of the labor of women who came before — the ones who helped employers realize that what a firm might lose in maternity leave revenue, it would gain in increased loyalty from its female workforce.”

Sousa has been practicing law with Smith Debnam since becoming licensed in 1981. She has a wealth of experience in state and federal courts, including bankruptcy courts, at both trial and appellate levels. She represents mostly businesses — both large and small — in a variety of matters, including contract drafting and disputes, and issues pertaining to labor and employment laws in North Carolina. She met her now husband, David Sousa (JD ’81), while a student at Wake Forest School of Law.