Lawyer Magazine_Winter 2020


in our workplaces and communities, stop thinking the problems are too big for us to have an impact. I think that video jolted a critical mass of people, lawyers included, out of complacency.” Dorsey has been an AmLaw 100 leader in implementing diversity and inclusion programs like their Diversity Hours Policy that credits attorneys for up to 50 hours of qualifying diversity activities toward their billable hours requirements; for its regular classes, programs and events on a variety of diversity and inclusion topics; and for its generous parental leave and adoption policies. Dorsey made headlines when it ended its prosecutorial pro bono program with the City of Minneapolis following Floyd’s death, citing research that prosecution of misdemeanor crimes disproportionately impacts the Black community. For 42 years, the program had placed Dorsey associates in the City Attorney’s office to gain litigation experience while simultaneously relieving the workload of the city attorney. Dorsey will now focus more of its pro bono services on external racial justice work. The firm is also implementing long-term strategies to promote diversity and inclusion by working with an outside consultant to study exit interviews and to conduct “stay interviews” with lawyers of color and women partners to identify best practices for

retention; piloting a “Just in Time Feedback” initiative that will create a platform for partners to give prompt feedback to junior associates on any matter on which they bill 10+ hours; piloting blind work allocation to junior associates in the corporate and trial groups; and formalizing diversity and inclusion resource groups (Lawyers of Color, Women Attorneys, LGBTQ+ Allies, and Staff of Color and Allyship). Both Robins Kaplan and Dorsey are also listed among the 117 major law firms nationwide that participate in the Diversity Lab’s Mansfield Rule, which measures whether law firms have affirmatively considered at least 30% of women, lawyers of color, LGBTQ+ lawyers, and lawyers with disabilities for leadership and governance roles, equity partner promotions, formal client pitch opportunities, and senior lateral positions. The goal is to boost representation of diverse lawyers in law firm leadership by broadening the pool of candidates considered for those opportunities. MINNEAPOLIS: THE EPICENTER OF SOCIAL CHANGE Minneapolis is home to the University of St. Thomas School of Law and its mission “dedicated to integrating faith and reason in the search for truth through a focus on morality and social justice.” It is also the birthplace of St. Thomas lawyers trained to

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