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. Inclusive Outside Counsel

Modern Counsel, January 2016

Barry Parsons, Associate General Counsel and LCLD’s Diversity Contact at Freddie Mac, discussed his work to promote diversity in the profession. Parsons said that diversity is a personal priority for him, but it’s also a priority for Freddie Mac. In particular, the company partners with the National Association of Minority- and Women-Owned Law Firms, which not only allows them to have diverse people working on their matters, but “we often get partner-level, big-firm expertise at a lower cost.” Parsons also described how LCLD has led to long-term business relationships with diverse lawyers.

2. 2016 Pathfinder Registration Open  

LCLD, 1/25/16

Registration is now open for the LCLD Pathfinder Program for 2016. Selection will be available until February 25 for diverse, high-potential associates with three-to-five years of experience. Note that 2011 LCLD Scholars who are selected as 2016 Pathfinders will receive priority enrollment. 

3. McKinsey Global Institute: Women’s Equality Would Unleash Massive Growth

Huffington Post, 1/20/16

If every country in the world were to elevate its gender policies to match the best-performing country in the region, it would still add $12 trillion to the global economy, according to research from the McKinsey Global Institute. This “neighborhood analysis” solves for issues of geographical and cultural context and is more achievable in the short-term than complete gender equality. Additionally, “two-thirds of the suggestions can be enacted entirely by the private sector, with no government involvement.” 

4. A Person Can’t Be ‘Diverse’

The Atlantic, 1/26/16

‘Diversity’ is a “medicinal word that has no emotional resonance,” according to Ava DuVernay, director of Selma and an advocate for diversity in the film industry. DuVernay and others prefer to use words like ‘inclusion’ and ‘belonging’ that have emotional connotations. They also take issue with describing a person as ‘diverse,’ when the word inherently refers to a group “made up of people or things that are different from each other.” Ultimately, "seeing all non-straight-white-males as one undifferentiated mass is not, traditionally, a tendency of those who want an inclusive society where historic injustices have been remedied. It is a tendency of those who don’t."

5. Be Pretty, but Not Too Pretty: Why Women Just Can’t Win

The Washington Post, 1/21/16

A survey of women in technology found that 84 percent of respondents have been told they’re “too aggressive,” and 44 percent been told that they’re both “too aggressive” and “too passive,” shedding light on the astonishing number of double-binds faced by women in corporate America. A woman who takes charge is bossy, but one who lets others give direction is weak; taking generous maternity leave means she doesn’t care about her career, but not enough time off sets a bad example. Women are told to stop obsessing about being judged and get on with their work, and yet everyone from their coworkers to the media are constantly reinforcing those double-binds.