Chambers D&I North America Report 2021

Contributed by
12 Aug 2021

The Diversity and Inclusion Strategy Report

While Equality, Diversity and Inclusion increasingly becomes a core strategic objective for law firms, companies and the legal market as a whole in North America, the last year has nonetheless highlighted and exacerbated existing inequalities in the profession and society as a whole. With this in mind, we are delighted to launch the Chambers D&I North America Report 2021: Racial Inclusion in the Legal Profession.

The briefing has been designed to provide best practice and actionable insights for legal professionals to create a more inclusive legal sector. The Chambers report contains case studies looking at innovative programmes and profiles highlighting the work of key individuals shortlisted for the Chambers D&I North America Awards. Contributors include Toyota North America, U.S. Bank, CECO Environmental Corporation and our charity partner, Human Rights Watch.

Download the Report

The thoughts of legal professionals on the challenges and successes of furthering D&I in 2021

Judge Ruben Castillo, Akerman LLP

 

“The tragic events of 2020 have served to focus the legal industry on the twin goals of diversity and racial justice. This has been a welcome focus for the legal profession and will be a tremendous asset for the cause of justice and equality with many firms bringing significant resources and talent to the fight.”

Chasity Wilson Henry, Senior Vice President, General Counsel & Corporate Secretary, CECO Environmental Corporation

 

 

“The killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery, and the shooting of Jacob Black, among others, over the past few years have brought heightened visibility to the centuries-long issues of racial equity and ethnic injustice in the United States and around the world. Many, including companies large and small, have seized this moment to take action to combat racism in society and in the workplace.”

Susan M. Finegan, Litigation and Pro Bono Partner, Mintz

 

“I think it is important to plan strategically for any significant change. First, figure out your own organization’s unique operations, and tailor your efforts accordingly…In doing so, make sure to include those who might be most resistant to the change and listen to their point of view; adjust your plan accordingly.”

Jonathan P. Harmon, Chairman, McGuireWoods

 

“The legal industry was already increasing efforts around inclusion and diversity prior to the death of George Floyd. However, George Floyd’s vicious killing, the protests and other events in 2020 accelerated conversations, initiatives, and commitments among many in our industry.”

Sharon Ng, Partner, Stinson LLP

 

“Perseverance is key because change takes time even though we believe it should happen overnight. Last, do not be afraid to jettison what is not working and try something new.”

 

 

 

The report highlights success stories of racial inclusion and justice being advanced within the legal profession and the communities in which the contributing organisations operate.

Chambers are delighted to share the report to highlight success and spotlight the fantastic work of leading law firms and organistions who are working hard to promote diversity and inclusion throughout their work and in their respective environments. A key point and focus of the report is designed to ensure that no law firm, company or individual feels isolated in their D&I journey.

Whether you are providing a partnership pathway in a law firm or funding racial justice in the community, there are other organisations on the same journey to collaborate with and share best practice. Together, the legal market can continue to create an inclusive environment for all to thrive in.

Working together to create change

Chambers would like to thank the organisations that contributed to this edition of the report.

  • Akerman
  • CECO Environmental Corporation
  • Davis Wright Tremaine
  • Human Rights Watch
  • Lloyds Bank North America
  • McGuireWoods
  • Mintz
  • Riley Safer Holmes & Cancila
  • Stinson LLP
  • Toyota North America
  • U.S. Bank

Read about the research and work that went into producing the Chambers D&I report for North America and download the report for a full analysis of diversity and inclusion in the legal market.