SAN FRANCISCO - Quateman LLP, California's biggest women-owned municipal bond counsel firm, is turning 20 this year and still growing its slice of the marketplace - long after most governments in the state stopped giving any preference to women-owned businesses.

"Governments and companies want a vendor base that matches their constituency," said Lisa Greer Quateman, the firm's founder. "Most importantly in the public finance arena, they value the additional sets of eyes and they realize that it is in their interest to promote new firms and new faces in the business, so that they will have a large enough pool of competing firms from which to choose."

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