Jasmine Rippy and Ameena Sheikh aren’t what you’d expect – and they’re perfectly fine with that. In fact, this bold duo is thrilled to offer the unexpected with their minority women-owned law firm, The Rippy + Sheikh Law Firm PC (aka “the Ladies in Law”) in Detroit.
Rippy is African American and Sheikh is Arabic. “We’re breaking down stereotypes every time we go to court and in how we run our business. We’re not the typical lawyers in how we look or act,” Sheikh says. “We really never thought anything of us being different ethnicities. It wasn’t until people assumed Jasmine had a Black partner and (that my partner must be) white or Arab. Then we realized that we could empower other women to remove unconscious barriers that prevent them from working together.”
The ladies, both 30, worked at a large, local corporate law firm until last year. Rippy says they worked with “heavy hitters,” negotiating $500 million deals. “At the firm, we were the oddballs – that’s how we became friends. We just didn’t fit into the traditional, corporate mold and knew within the first three months it wasn’t right for us. We had creative spirits back then but couldn’t really express them,” Rippy says.
In 2019, they left and opened their firm in the Russell Industrial Center. Rippy decorated the colorful space, accented by a stylish graffiti wall, often featured on their YouTube channel where they discuss hot-button legal topics, sometimes with a wine glass in hand. “Being in the Russell helps our brand and gives us that creative energy that keeps us going,” Rippy says.
“We’re really good at what we do,” Sheikh says of the criminal, family and probate cases they handle hands-on. “We recognize each other’s strengths and divvy up tasks accordingly. We couldn’t imagine doing this without each other.”
1600 Clay St., Building 2, Suite 331, Detroit