President and CEO — Carlton Fields
I, Gary Sasso, personally commit to the following:
- I will continue to champion the cause of diversity and inclusion for all historically disadvantaged citizens and employees, inside and outside the firm, not because there is a business case for this, but because it’s the right thing to do.
- I will continue to remain personally involved in a leadership role in our law firm’s diversity efforts.
- I will continue to promote the success of diverse communities in all of my professional, community, and civic endeavors, including aiding the development of Black communities and curbing unjust, discriminatory policing.
- I will continue to use the Rooney Rule as a pole star in making all decisions for the law firm, including appointment of lawyers to management roles, nominations for our Board, constituting client teams, succession planning, law firm committees, key staffing decisions, and professional, community, and civic endeavors.
- I will continue to introduce and recruit clients to membership in LCLD.
- I will continue to discuss and promote diversity and inclusion in client visits, meetings, forums, and functions, including it as an agenda item whenever appropriate. I will continue to encourage clients to collaborate with our firm to identify and develop diverse attorneys, including Black lawyers, to invest in their success, and to support their having leadership roles in our engagements, in our overall relationship, and as successors to client relationship manager responsibilities.
- I will continue to care personally about the recruiting, professional development, promotion, and long term success of all diverse lawyers, and I will continue to reach out to them personally and to make myself available to learn from them, guide them, and help them in every way.
- I will meet twice each year with all law firm LCLD Fellows, Pathfinders, and Alumni and make myself available to hear their concerns and ideas, to learn about their experiences, and to help them continue to grow and succeed as professionals.
- I will continue to oversee personally the recruiting and hiring of diverse lawyers and personnel, with the goal of ensuring that we achieve a critical mass of diverse lawyers and employees.
- I will continue to strive to achieve suitable representation of diverse individuals at the highest levels of the firm and across our platform.
- I will continue to interact personally with sponsors of diverse attorneys to help support and to ensure the success of their efforts. By the same token, I will continue to interact personally with each protégé toward the same goal.
- We will remain committed to recruiting from historically Black law schools.
- We will achieve a critical mass of diverse attorneys and employees.
- Diversity is not a program for our firm. It is who we are. And we are committed to ensuring that this is reflected in everything we do.
- We will achieve suitable representation of diverse attorneys and employees at all levels in the firm.
- We will continue to feature diversity as a standing agenda item in all Managers’ Meetings, making it a management priority.
- We will expect all Practice Group Leaders to take personal responsibility for the recruiting and success of diverse attorneys and other professionals in their groups. They will be assessed partly on their success in this area.
- We will renew our commitment to our diverse attorney sponsorship program, monitoring and adjusting it as needed to ensure that this is not a “check the box” exercise but a powerful, functioning, successful commitment on the part of all concerned.
- We will recommit our efforts to ensuring that we recognize the presence of implicit bias and control for it by owning it and applying checks and balances to ensure fair and equitable outcomes.
- We will recommit our efforts to ensuring that we provide robust, direct, and frank feedback to all of our professionals to equip them with the guidance they need to succeed, rather than take the easy way out by providing polite but insincere approval or by cutting off work. We will strive to provide increasingly challenging and meaningful professional opportunities to our diverse attorneys as they advance from year to year.
- We will measure our success not only by the percentage of headcount represented by diverse individuals at any one time, but by the extent, quality, and length of their success here in the course of their careers.