At the LCLD Annual Membership Meeting on September 17 and 18, LCLD Members celebrated the organization's Fifth anniversary by returning to Arizona, site of the historic 2008 Call to Action Summit that led to the creation of LCLD in 2009 — a milestone also heralded in "Timeline" (above), a video outlining the history of diversity and inclusion in American society.

During a busy, one-day conference, hundreds of representatives from LCLD Member organizations took stock of the programs LCLD has built, and noted signs of progress made toward the organization's goal of a more diverse and inclusive legal profession.

“Each of LCLD’s 221 Members has made not just a commitment of his or her organization to this critical effort, but a personal commitment to see diverse talent rise to leadership roles throughout the profession,” said LCLD Chair Brad Smith, General Counsel for Microsoft.

The meeting (agenda below, with links to program videos) included an overview of LCLD’s signature programs, with analysis of results to date by Dr. Robert Nelson, Director of the American Bar Foundation who surveyed program participants earlier this year.

LCLD programs are growing in both effectiveness and numbers: Since its launch in 2012, the LCLD Success in Law School Mentorship program has created 2,292 pairs of lawyer mentors and law student mentees. The 1L LCLD Scholars program, with 536 participants since 2011, is providing rare opportunities to first-year law students for summer employment at LCLD Member corporations and law firms.

The Fellows program, generally seen as LCLD’s “flagship” initiative, gives 603 hand-picked attorneys, generally with eight to 10 years of experience, a year of professional development and relationship building and a strong organization for subsequent “alumni” networking.

“I don’t think we realized five years ago how much would get accomplished in these first five years,” said Robert Grey, whom the Board of Directors named president of LCLD the day before the meeting. “The personal commitment of LCLD’s Members is very real. We are starting to see some exciting results.” 

Guest speakers included:

  • Bob Nelson, Director of the American Bar Foundation, the MacCrate Research Chair in the Legal Profession, and Professor of sociology and law at Northwestern University.

  • Scott Westfahl, Faculty Director of Executive Education at Harvard Law School.

  • Kenji Yoshino, professor of constitutional law at the NYU School of Law and author of "Uncovering Talent: A New Model of Inclusion" (attached below). Yoshino presented the results of his survey of LCLD Member organizations on issues related to workplace inclusion. Stay tuned for more details.


In the agenda below, videos and presentation files are linked to their respective meeting sessions.

Wednesday, September 17

11:00 am

LCLD Board of Directors Meeting

Aztec Room, Arizona Biltmore Hotel

6:00 pm

Reception Hosted by the LCLD Board of Directors

Gold Room, Arizona Biltmore Hotel


Thursday, September 18

8:00 am


Recognition of New LCLD Members in 2014

McArthur Ballroom, Arizona Biltmore Hotel

9:00 am

The Opening Act
Brad Smith, LCLD Board Chair, and Robert Grey, LCLD Executive Director

This session includes opening remarks from Brad Smith and Robert Grey, along with an upbeat video message from LCLD Founder Rick Palmore and program participants.

Frank Lloyd Wright Salon E&F, Arizona Biltmore Hotel


9:30 am

Active Data & The Look Forward
Bob Nelson, Director of the American Bar Foundation and the MacCrate Research Chair in the Legal Profession, Northwestern University Professor of Sociology and Law

View the slides here.

Frank Lloyd Wright Salon E&F, Arizona Biltmore Hotel


10:45 am

The LCLD Action Agenda
Lori Lorenzo, LCLD Program Director
Scott Westfahl, Director of Executive Education and Professor of Practice, Harvard Law School

LCLD Members and program participants describe how they have made LCLD's 1L LCLD Scholars and LCLD Fellows programs their own, to further develop diverse talent within their organizations.

Frank Lloyd Wright Salon E&F, Arizona Biltmore Hotel


12:00 pm

Remarks by Robert Grey, LCLD Executive Director

Recognition of Learning Experience and Leadership Lunch Hosts
Recognition of 2014 Most Active Member Corporations
Recognition of 2014 Most Active Member Law Firms

"Timeline": LCLD's Five Years in Review [VIDEO]

McArthur Ballroom, Arizona Biltmore Hotel


1:00 pm

Uncovering Talent
Kenji Yoshino, Chief Justice Earl Warren Professor of Constitutional Law at NYU School of Law

Frank Lloyd Wright Salon E&F, Arizona Biltmore Hotel


3:00 pm

The Next Act & The Faces of LCLD
Brad Smith, Chair, LCLD Board of Directors, and Executive Vice President and General Counsel, Microsoft

Closing remarks, followed by the "The Faces of LCLD" closing video.

Save the Date: Sixth Annual LCLD Membership Meeting (September 29, 2015)
Save the Date: LCLD 2015 Mid-Year CLE Presentation, Building Inclusive Teams: Covering, by Kenji Yoshino (March 26, 2015)

Frank Lloyd Wright Salon E&F, Arizona Biltmore Hotel



(Article photos by Joe Mahoney)


Photo Gallery

All photos were taken by Joe Mahoney.