I, Peter Torcicollo, personally commit to the following:
- Use my position as Managing Director to set an example for other firm leaders (Executive Committee members, practice group leaders, administrative chiefs) regarding the importance of personal initiative in connection with DEI efforts, including personal efforts to:
- Engage in Gibbons Diversity Initiative (GDI) and Gibbons Women’s Initiative (GWI) programming
- Participate on the firm’s Diversity Committee
- Assist in the recruitment, retention, development, and promotion of diverse attorneys
- Maintain involvement with and actively engage as part of the firm’s Diversity Initiative, offering suggestions for further development and expansion of programming and overseeing strategy, metrics, timelines, and goals and objectives for increasing diversity, equity, and inclusion at the firm.
- Communicate the firm’s commitment to DEI, as well as my own personal commitment, through ongoing support of the projects undertaken by GDI and GWI and through email, newsletter, and website content highlighting these projects.
- Monitor the firm's status and trends in recruitment, development, and retention of minority and women employees.
- Leverage my profile and network in the broader legal community to provide thought leadership for advancing DEI throughout the legal profession.
- Schedule regular one-on-one meetings with diverse attorneys at my firm and encourage their feedback on the firm’s DEI efforts, including areas for improvement.
- Personally mentor at least one diverse attorney per year, to assist in building both their internal and external networks, to ensure they are receiving substantive work assignments and meaningful client contact, and to help them navigate challenges in their career development.
- Actively pursue Mansfield 6.0 certification, which will involve my personal involvement on a committee formed specifically for this purpose.
- Continue to impose accountability for DEI efforts and consider such efforts in connection with recruiting, hiring, work assignments, billable hour credit, evaluation, compensation, promotion, and client succession plans.
- Develop and conduct regular, mandatory, firm-wide DEI training, including unconscious bias training.
- Strengthen the firm’s mentoring program, including affinity mentoring, to impart knowledge and guidance regarding professional development, career path, and work challenges.
- Formalize the process for internal diversity needs assessments.
- Expand relationships with affinity bar associations and similar diversity organizations in both the legal and broader business communities.
- Continue our strong support of diverse business enterprises, whether through the firm’s supplier diversity program, GDI-123, or through pro bono partnerships with diverse business organizations, such as the African American Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey and the Institute for Entrepreneurial Leadership – in ways that make business sense for the firm.
- Continue our strong support for diversity pipeline programs that encourage students of diverse backgrounds to consider law as a career and assist them in pursuing such opportunities.
- Continually evaluate and develop our successful in-house Clerkship to Associate Pipeline (CAP) Program, which assists highly qualified students of diverse backgrounds, selected by participating faculty and administrators of area law schools, to prepare for post-law school employment, including clerkships and priority consideration for associate positions at Gibbons after completion of their clerkships.
- Formalize and strengthen recruitment of diverse law students and attorneys through various means, including advertisements in relevant publications, participation in relevant job fairs and career panels at law schools, utilization of relevant online platforms and external executive recruiting/search firms, and sponsorship of internships.
- In connection with attorneys of color, women attorneys, and attorneys from other underrepresented groups, set specific metrics to:
- Increase their numbers at all levels, from associate to equity director
- Increase their numbers in leadership positions
- Increase their numbers in succession planning
- Manage and monitor work assignment allocation and/or hours billed to ensure equal access to top client matters
- Ensure pay equity