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, articles you'd like to share, of if you would like to subscribe, please email Caitlin Puffenberger at

1. Diversity Initiatives: Why Isn't Your Outside Counsel Doing More?

Inside Counsel, 8/30/16

To create a truly inclusive profession, it will take committed leaders, honesty about the need for improvement, pressure from clients, and engagement at all levels. The leaders of diversity and talent development at LCLD Member firm Jenner & Block LLP cite participation in LCLD and events like the Women in Law Hackathon as key ways to promote an inclusive culture. “It’s important to identify steps that individuals can take, ways that everyone can change their behavior and make a difference,” said Susan Kohlmann, Chair of the Diversity and Inclusion Committee. 

2. Transforming a Dinosaur: How the Legal Field is Embracing Diversity

The Huffington Post, 9/1/16

Rekha Chiruvolu, Head of Diversity and Inclusion at LCLD Member firm Nixon Peabody LLP, says firm-wide innovative thinking is critical to overcoming many of the barriers to diversity and inclusion. For example, “if you improve business development opportunities for diverse attorneys, you’ll improve retention and promotion, which in turn leads to increased recruitment of diverse attorneys,” she said. 

3. President Obama Nominates First Muslim Federal Judge

Colorlines, 9/7/16

Abid Riaz Qureshi, Global Chair of Pro Bono at LCLD Member firm Latham & Watkins LLP, is the first Muslim to be nominated for the federal judiciary. If confirmed, he will serve on the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. “A judiciary that reflects the rich diversity of our national helps ensure the fair and just administration of the law, and it is vital for American Muslims to be included,” said Farhana Khera, Executive Director of Muslim Advocates, in a statement about Qureshi’s nomination. 

4. Op-Ed: Why Not Being ‘A Racist’ Isn’t Enough

The Washington Post, 9/2/16

Viewing racism as only “a small set of outrageous explicit actions” makes it easy to avoid, but doesn't solve the problem, writes Christine Emba. “Not being seen as a racist becomes the end goal, rather than the real work of ending racism – cultivating integration, perhaps even friendship, with those of other races; acknowledging and seeking to rectify one’s own implicit biases; starting conversations about race within one’s own community; advocating for and enacting non-racist policies.” 

5. Corporate Diversity Initiatives Should Include White Men

Harvard Business Review, 9/6/16

“Most of the work of diversity and inclusion approaches in companies to date has focused on empowering the ‘out’ groups or training the ‘in’ groups about their unconscious biases… Meanwhile, most senior executives are still white men.” In order to engage the dominant group, what if companies treated diversity like any other business issue? “Inclusive leaders will be those skilled in getting everyone to embrace balance, and keep an eye on the balance between genders [or minority groups], across all functions and levels.”

6. Successful Leaders Know What Made Them Who They Are

Harvard Business Review, 9/5/16

A diverse slate of leaders, including Madeline Albright, Colin Powell, Coach K, and Condoleeza Rice, discuss the people, events, and environments that made them the people they are today. “Highly accomplished people have an inner voice and pay attention to it,” writes Bernie Swaine, Founder of the Washington Speakers Bureau. “They understand the defining moments of their lives and thereby better understand their own strengths, biases, and weaknesses as leaders.”