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. Lawyers Wrestle with Diversity Issue in Big Law

Bloomberg BNA, 11/13/15

Big Law Business hosted a discussion on diversity in the legal profession in San Francisco, featuring several members of the LCLD community. Laura Stein, LCLD Chair-Elect and SVP and GC of The Clorox Company, discussed implicit bias, while Jeremy Roth, LCLD Member and Co-President of Littler Mendelson, talked about isolation for lawyers of color. Deborah Broyles, Director of Global Diversity & Inclusion at Reed Smith LLP, talked about making a point of connecting with diverse associates. Also speaking were Brian Wong, LCLD Diversity Contact and LCLD Mentors Joshua Wayser and Aaron Agenbroad.  

2. The Empathy Gap Between Paris and Beirut

The Atlantic, 11/16/15

Terrorist attacks occurred in both Beirut and Paris last week, but despite many similarities, the attention of the media and the public has been primarily focused on the French attacks. Some say this “empathy gap” is simply the result of greater familiarity with Paris, or with (perhaps misguided) expectations – a terrorist attack in Beirut seems much more likely than in Paris, and therefore less shocking. Whatever the cause, this empathy gap has consequences. “If no one points out that suicide bombings in Beirut are no less an attack on human decency that those in Paris, it is much easier to sort the world into a clash of civilizations – where innocent deaths on one side are more deserving of mourning than innocent deaths on the other.”

3. Racial Diversity in U.K. Boardrooms Today Equals Female Representation in 1998

Forbes, 11/16/15

After four years of working to increase gender diversity on corporate boards, the U.K. government is now focusing on ethnic diversity. Only 5 percent of the directors of the country’s top boards come from ethnically diverse backgrounds; many of those are in emerging markets. British boardrooms often look abroad for diverse leaders, which leads to more varied boards but also raises concerns about the pipeline for diverse talent at home. 

4. Can Predictive Policing Be Ethical and Effective?

The New York Times, 11/18/15

“More police departments are trying to predict crime through computer analysis of data, part of the growing trend of using algorithms to analyze human behavior. Advocates say this approach focuses on those most likely to commit crimes, allowing for better relationships between police and residents. But critics say the computer models perpetuate racial profiling and infringe on civil liberties with little accountability, especially when the forecasting models are built by companies that keep their methods secret.” Read arguments from experts on all sides of the issue. 

5. Gender at Work is Not a Women’s Issue

Harvard Business Review, 11/17/15 

Rather than viewing gender equality as a battle between the sexes, it should be viewed as the “dividing line between modernity and its deniers.” Even the most engaged men are often viewed as simply supporters or sponsors of women’s initiatives. But when gender balance is treated as a business imperative, it becomes another metric of success and improvement for "progressive, future-oriented leaders." Consider creating policies that hold leaders accountable for the gender balance of their talent or reframing women's networks as balance networks.