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Diversity and Inclusion

Diversity and inclusion (D&I) is a significant priority at Jackson Lewis, and it remains a core value as we expand.

Diversity and Inclusion

Overview

“Diversity and inclusion is a never-ending journey and an area where our practices will continue to grow and evolve without ever reaching a resting place. To ensure progress, we challenge every person at Jackson Lewis to be intentional about D&I. When everyone is engaged in moving the needle forward, we are succeeding.”

Kevin G. Lauri - Firm Co-Chair

Kevin G. Lauri
Firm Chair

At Jackson Lewis, we believe an inclusive culture makes us a stronger, better firm. We share our clients' goals to emphasize diversity, inclusion, integrity and respect for the contribution of every employee. We understand the importance of having a workforce that reflects the various communities in which we work. We strive to create an environment where diverse attorneys want to work and can flourish.

Our Guiding Principles

The firm’s senior leadership recognizes that diversity strengthens the fabric of our firm, and understands that when our people are thriving, the firm is thriving. We strive to adhere to the following guiding principles:

  • Encourage a better understanding of how diverse individual experiences and backgrounds can strengthen the firm and its service to clients through a continuing firm-wide communication and educational process
  • Inspire every employee to realize their professional potential within the firm
  • Treat every person with dignity and respect
  • Promote understanding and acceptance of individual differences
  • Respect our employees’ needs to have work/life flexibility

Our Advancements

Our guiding principles are further supported by Jackson Lewis’ focus on intentionality: we are deliberate in our goals, programs and initiatives in order to best support our people. No matter the differences a member of the Jackson Lewis community brings to work, we are purposeful in creating an environment that motivates and encourages our attorneys to reach their full potential. Highlights include:

  • We have developed a formalized election process to the Board to ensure we have the broadest diversity, including gender, race and ethnicity and generational, in senior leadership positions.
  • We spearhead the Vincent A. Cino Scholarship program, which currently provides more than $150,000 in scholarships annually to students across the country who are traditionally underrepresented in the legal profession and wish to pursue a career in workplace law.
  • In 2018, Jackson Lewis committed to training all attorneys on unconscious bias and strategies to interrupt these biases.
  • We established Practicing and Parenting, an internal resource group for parents and allies at Jackson Lewis. Currently a pilot program out of our Orange County, California office, the Group meets quarterly to discuss issues such as time management, work-life balance, and tips for career advancement during the early stage of parenthood.
  • We created a firm Ombuds team to further support a safe, inclusive, and respectful environment for our workforce.
  • We hired our first-ever Director of Diversity & Inclusion, who reports directly to the Firm Chair and works closely with the Chair of the Diversity & Inclusion Committee and is responsible for the strategic direction of the firm’s diversity and inclusion initiatives.
  • Jackson Lewis’ Diversity & Inclusion Committee is chaired by Principal Weldon H. Latham, a nationally recognized attorney with over 20 years of experience advising clients in diversity representation, corporate diversity compliance reviews and diversity enhancement action plans.

Our Diversity

“The next generation of lawyers is more diverse, our clients are more diverse, and we have an opportunity to incorporate all this diversity — whether it’s race, gender, sexuality, educational background, and professional background — into everything we do. Our commitment to excellence is strengthened because of our various races, genders, sexual orientations, and backgrounds, and we can only get better from here.” -  Kevin G. Lauri, Firm Chair

*The Firm has recently initiated a process for voluntary self-identification of LGBT status.

Our Commitment

  • Jackson Lewis is a Mansfield Certified firm, having affirmatively considered women, attorneys of color, LGBTQ+ attorneys, and attorneys with disabilities – at least 30 percent of the candidate pool – for recruitment, governance roles, equity partner promotions, and inclusion in formal pitches to clients. The firm also achieved “Plus” status for exceeding the baseline certification requirements, and for successfully reaching at least 30 percent diverse lawyer representation in a notable number of current leadership roles.
  • Jackson Lewis joined the Law Firm Antiracism Alliance, a program whose purpose is to “leverage the resources of the private bar to amplify the voices of communities and individuals oppressed by racism, to better use the law as a vehicle for change that benefits communities of color and to promote racial equity in the law and in government institutions.”
  • In June 2020, Jackson Lewis joined the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) Stand Against Hate Pledge, denouncing the anti-Asian hate, violence, and racism related to COVID-19.
  • In 2017, Jackson Lewis was the first law firm to join the CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion ™ pledge, the largest CEO-driven business commitment to advance diversity and inclusion in the workplace.
  • Jackson Lewis pledged its support to the American Bar Association Resolution 113.
  • Jackson Lewis is a signatory to the American Bar Association’s Pledge for Change: Disability Diversity in the Legal Profession.
  • Jackson Lewis is part of the American Bar Association’s Working Group to Advance Well-Being in the Legal Profession.
  • Principal Pedro J. Torres-Díaz, immediate past-President of the Hispanic National Bar Association, currently serves on the ABA Commission on Racial and Ethnic Diversity in the Profession.

Our Awards and Recognitions

Jackson Lewis has received national awards and honors recognizing our diversity and inclusion efforts, including:

  • Jackson Lewis is a Mansfield Certified Plus firm, having affirmatively considered women, attorneys of color, LGBTQ+ attorneys, and attorneys with disabilities for recruitment, governance roles, equity partner promotions, and inclusion in formal pitches to clients. The firm achieved “Plus” status for exceeding the baseline certification requirements.
  • Jackson Lewis was ranked #1 by Law360 in its 2020 Glass Ceiling Report for its proportion of female attorneys and female equity principals.
  • Jackson Lewis was ranked #5 on "The 2020 A-List: Female Equity Partner Scorecard," published by The American Lawyer.
  • For the ninth year in a row, Jackson Lewis has been recognized as a “Gold Standard Firm” by the Women In Law Empowerment Forum (WILEF). To meet WILEF’s requirements for Gold Standard designation, Jackson Lewis successfully demonstrated that female attorneys are well represented among its equity principals and hold key leadership positions, including on governance and compensation committees, and that the firm recognizes the contributions of women through compensation.
  • Jackson Lewis received a score of 95% on the Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s 2020 Corporate Equality Index (CEI), the nation’s premier benchmarking survey and report measuring corporate policies and practices related to LGBTQ workplace equality.
  • Jackson Lewis was recognized for “Tipping the Scales” as part of the Diversity & Flexibility Alliance’s 2020 New Partner Report for having 50% or more women in its 2020 partner class.
  • Jackson Lewis ranked in Working Mother's 2020 “Best Law Firms for Women,” a report distinguishing the U.S. law firms who are utilizing best practices in retaining and promoting women lawyers.
  • In 2019, Jackson Lewis was listed in Law360’s “Best Law Firms for Minority Attorneys."
  • Jackson Lewis was ranked #10 in The National Law Journal’s “The NLJ 500: The Women in Law Scorecard 2020.”

Our Diversity & Inclusion Committee

Jackson Lewis’ Diversity & Inclusion Committee supports firm wide D&I strategy and includes our five Attorney Resource Groups (ARGs). The D&I Committee is chaired by Board Member Weldon H. Latham. The ARGs share the following mission:

  • Support firm D&I strategy across all resource groups.
  • Serve as a resource for our diverse workforce and allies to feel connected and empowered across all JL offices.
  • Serve as a firm wide resource to improve retention and attract lateral and new hire candidates.
  • Enhance relationships with national minority-based organizations and associations.

 

Our Leadership

Kevin G. Lauri

Kevin G. Lauri

Samantha N. Hoffman

Samantha N. Hoffman

Weldon H. Latham

Weldon H. Latham

Gregory T. Alvarez

Gregory T. Alvarez

Tanya A. Bovée

Tanya A. Bovée

Jeffrey S. Brody

Jeffrey S. Brody

Maurice G. Jenkins

Maurice G. Jenkins

African American Attorney Resource Group

Marlo Johnson Roebuck

Marlo Johnson Roebuck

Otieno B. Ombok

Otieno B. Ombok

Asian American Attorney Resource Group

Monica H. Khetarpal

Monica H. Khetarpal

Gillian P. Yee

Gillian P. Yee

Hispanic Attorney Resource Group

Jason C. Gavejian

Jason C. Gavejian

Angela Quiles Nevarez

Angela Quiles Nevarez

Out Professionals and Allies in Law (OPAL)

Michelle E. Phillips

Michelle E. Phillips

Wayne S. Yoshigai

Wayne S. Yoshigai

Practicing and Parenting

Alison L. Lynch

Alison L. Lynch

Nicole M. Shaffer

Nicole M. Shaffer

Veterans Attorney Resource Group

Donald E. English, Jr.

Donald E. English, Jr.

John Andrew Schaffer

John Andrew Schaffer

Women’s Interest Network

Adriana R. Midence

Adriana R. Midence

Marla N. Presley

Marla N. Presley

Sarah J. Ryan

Sarah J. Ryan

Our Recruiting

We continue to enlist the services of Diverse Attorney Recruiters, Ron Jordan, of Carter-White & Shaw LLC and Sheila Owsley, of Charlotte’sLaw LLC. Mr. Jordan, the founding Principal of Carter-White & Shaw, has over 20 years of experience in attorney placement with his company, whose mission is to be the leader in discovery and promotion of diverse legal talent. Ms. Owsley has over 30 years of experience in the legal industry and focuses on attorney of color placement for AM100 law firms nationwide.

Both Mr. Jordan and Ms. Owsley devote their efforts to seeking diverse Principals, Of Counsel and Associates for all of Jackson Lewis’ locations throughout the nation, and regularly liaise with the Chair of the firm, representatives of the firm’s Board of Directors, and the firm’s Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.