Compiled for the LCLD Board of Directors every Wednesday, this digest is designed to brief you on the latest headlines about LCLD Members and organizations, as well as thought-provoking articles on diversity in the legal profession, talent development, mentoring, and leadership. Past issues of the Digest are also archived on the LCLD web site.

If you have questions about the Digest, or articles you'd like to share, please email Caitlin Puffenberger at

This week, in news related to diversity and inclusion...

1. Members Gather for Sixth Annual Meeting in Chicago

LCLD Communications

A record number of LCLD Members and Fellows met in Chicago on September 28 and 29 to build on the organization’s success in developing programs and initiatives to advance diversity in the legal profession. The meeting featured a call to action from President Robert Grey and Board Chairman Brad Smith, table discussions led by Scott Westfahl, Director of Executive Educaion at Harvard Law School, and a keynote address from Martha Minow, Dean of Harvard Law School. 

2. Diversity Fellowship Programs Are on the Rise

Bloomberg BNA, 10/13/15

LCLD Member firm K&L Gates LLP and the University of Pittsburgh School of Law announced a new diversity fellowship that will include a full scholarship and a paid summer associate position. The program is the first of its kind in the state of Pennsylvania, and joins the ranks of national programs led by many other Member organizations. 

3. Corporate Boards Are a Boy’s Club – and Men Like It That Way

Bloomberg Business, 10/6/15

While 63 percent of women on corporate boards believe diverse boards are very important, only 35 percent of men feel the same way, according to a report from PricewaterhouseCoopers. Regarding racial diversity, 46 percent of women believed it was valuable, compared to just 27 percent of men. Men and women also did not see eye to eye on the specific benefits of diversity and how difficult it would be to diversify boards. However, newer board members placed a higher value on diversity; 62 percent of those with less than a year on the board saw diversity as crucial, compared to 39 percent of those who had been on the board for 10 or more years.  

4. Discrimination and Lack of Diversity Threaten the Bar’s Future

Solicitor’s Journal, 10/7/15

“The risk of discrimination, lack of diversity, and outmoded working practices could limit the barrister profession’s ability to meet the needs of consumers,” according to the UK Bar Standards Board. The board hopes to implement changes in these areas through its new strategic plan. “We are looking for new and creative ways to do this,” said Sir Andrew Burns, BSB Chair, adding that “engagement with experts, innovators, and key stakeholders is core” in creating change. 

5. How an Accounting Firms Convinced Its Employees They Could Change the World

Harvard Business Review, 10/6/15

“Working for an organization with a clearly defined purpose is second only to pay and benefits in importance for employees, and ranks ahead of promotion opportunities, job responsibilities, and work culture,” according to a recent survey. After using the following techniques, accounting firm KPMG found that 90 percent of partners felt increased pride in the firm and its mission:

  • Built stronger emotional connections between the firms and its employees by highlighting the role the firm played in historic events.
  • Reframed employee roles in ways to celebrate the difference they can make.
  • Encouraged employees to share their stories, rather than using a top-down approach.