The Boston Bar Association announced its strong support for the American Bar Association’s Resolution 113, an initiative designed to increase diversity in the legal profession. The Resolution urges all legal services providers to expand and create opportunities at all levels of responsibility for diverse attorneys, and urges clients to direct a greater percentage of the legal services they purchase to diverse attorneys. A report on the Resolution includes a model survey for providers of legal services to complete, which would allow prospective clients to view current levels of diversity among providers.
“On behalf of the Boston Bar Association (BBA), we applaud the American Bar Association for advancing Resolution 113,” said BBA President Carol Starkey of Conn Kavanaugh. “We are grateful to the ABA for their leadership on this important issue. We hope that the Resolution and the model survey will achieve their intended results, and we look forward to learning of this initiative’s progress in the coming years. We strongly believe that one of the most significant benefits of this initiative is that it will facilitate an ongoing constructive dialogue between law firms and corporations concerning diversity and inclusion within our profession. We view this initiative as one that affirmatively supports change through collaboration, and we are excited to be part of that discussion.”
The measure has been lauded by numerous businesses as well. To date, 55 chief legal officers of Fortune 1000 companies – several of whom are based in the Boston area – signed on to a letter of support for the resolution and the model survey, and are working to build further support for it in the legal community.
Peggy L. Ho, Executive Vice President and Chief of Staff of Legal and Government Relations for LPL Financial – and a BBA Council Member – praised the show of support.
“I am proud to support ABA Resolution 113, which urges all providers of legal services – including corporations and law firms – to expand and create opportunities at all levels of responsibilities for diverse attorneys,” she said. “At LPL, we are focused on doing our part to support diversity and inclusion within our legal department and across our firm. Resolution 113 encourages buyers of legal services to use a new Model Diversity Survey to determine how well firms are doing on diversity in their ranks. At LPL, we will be asking our top firms to fill out this survey on an annual basis, and I am excited that these survey results will lead to fruitful conversations to help promote diversity and inclusion in our profession.”
Elsewhere in Boston’s legal community, Global 50 law firm Goodwin has also announced its strong support for Resolution 113.
“Goodwin is dedicated to promoting diversity and inclusion in our profession,” said David M. Hashmall, Goodwin’s Chairman and leader of the firm’s Inclusion Advisory Committee (IAC). “We believe that Resolution 113 will help promote transparency and accountability, which are critical elements of any successful diversity initiative, and we applaud the ABA’s efforts to standardize a form of survey that clients can use to solicit diversity information from their outside counsel.”