Schiff Hardin has been known for many years for its commitment to diversity in the workplace and in the community. We are proud to support the following local and national organizations and initiatives:
ABA's Commission on Mental and Physical Disability Law's Disability Diversity in the Legal Professional: A Pledge for Change
Schiff Hardin is a signatory of the American Bar Association's Commission on Mental and Physical Disability Law's Disability Diversity in the Legal Professional: A Pledge for Change. The Pledge affirms the our commitment to diversity, specifically disability diversity, and recognizes that diversity is in the best interest of the profession, those the profession serves, as well as the organization making the commitment. The Pledge also announces that we will encourage others in the legal industry to make this commitment. For more information, visit http://www.abanet.org/disability/pledge/.
ABA Judicial Intern Opportunity Program
Schiff Hardin is a sponsor of the American Bar Association's Judicial Intern Opportunity Program. This full-time, six-week minimum summer internship program seeks to provide internship opportunities for minority or financially disadvantaged law students; those who are members of traditionally underrepresented groups in the legal profession. The program is open to first or second-year law students, and offers positions in the Chicago area as well as several other cities around the country.
For more information on the ABA Judicial Intern Opportunity Program, visit their Web site: http://www.americanbar.org/groups/litigation/initiatives/good_works/judicial_intern_opportunity_program.html.
Black Women Lawyers' Association of Greater Chicago (BWLA)
We sponsor and convene numerous events each year with the BWLA. In addition, the BWLA has honored our firm with several awards, including the "Lend a Hand" award in 2008 and the "Above and Beyond" award in 2009.
In August 2005, we hosted an evening cocktail reception to honor the BWLA's leadership and Schiff Hardin attorneys who are active in the BWLA.
At BWLA's November 2005 luncheon meeting hosted at our firm, Schiff Hardin's Student Outreach Committee organized and led a panel discussion targeted toward minority law students and first year associates — "Law Firm Survival Strategies: A Panel Designed to Help You Succeed in Law Firms." More than 40 law students from Chicago-area law schools and young lawyers from across the city attended.
Schiff Hardin is the sole Platinum Sponsor of the BWLA's 2008 Spring Fund Raiser Luncheon on April 23, 2008.
Additionally, a number of Schiff Hardin attorneys serve the organization in leadership capacities, including partner Patricia Brown Holmes as a past president of the organization.
For more information on the Black Women Lawyers' Association of Greater Chicago, visit their Web site: http://www.bwla.org/.
Cabrini Connections Tutor/Mentor Program
Schiff Hardin is a senior sponsor of this one-on-one tutoring and mentoring program that serves seventh through twelfth grade students living in Chicago's Cabrini-Green public housing project. The support of sponsors such as Schiff Hardin enables Cabrini Connections to provide youth from economically and educationally disadvantaged backgrounds with:
Comfortable study environments
Art and technology workshops
Travel and cultural activities
Computer and Internet access
Career and resume counseling
Schiff Hardin contributed to Cabrini Connections' Year End Dinner event in 2008 and 2009. Gabriel M. Rodriguez, leader of Schiff Hardin's Environmental group, serves on Cabrini Connections Tutor/Mentor Program's board of directors.
Through continuing contact with volunteer mentors, students finish school with the confidence and skills they need to succeed in college or careers. For more information on Cabrini Connections, visit their Web site: http://www.cabriniconnections.org/.
Call to Action
Our firm is a signatory to the Call To Action, supported by the Minority Corporate Counsel Association, whereby more than 90 Fortune 500 Chief Legal Officers have committed to make diversity a priority in their own departments; actively look for opportunities with law firms that distinguish themselves in diversity issues; and to end or limit relationships with firms whose track records reflect a lack of meaningful interest in diversity.
Chicago Bar Association's Alliance for Women's Call to Action
We are among the nine "leadership signatories" to the Chicago Bar Association's Alliance for Women's Call to Action seeking to promote and enhance leadership opportunities for women attorneys in Chicago.
Call to Action initiatives include increasing the number of women partners and practice group leaders, and encouraging women's participation on firm committees.
For more information on the Call to Action, visit the CBA's Web site: http://www.chicagobar.org/AM/Template.cfm?Section=Call_to_Action.
Chicago Bar Association's Diversity Initiative
Schiff Hardin was one of the first four law firms to sign on to the Chicago Bar Association's Diversity Initiative. Launched in 2006, the Diversity Initiative requires signatories to adopt general principles of inclusion and diversity in employment practices, pursue goals for hiring, retention and promotion of minorities, and participate in programs to measure their progress in achieving these goals. We are proud to be working toward and meeting these goals.
For more information about this initiative, visit the CBA's Web site: http://www.chicagobar.org/AM/Template.cfm?Section=Diversity_Initiative.
Chicago Committee on Minorities in Large Law Firms
We are a member firm of the Chicago Committee on Minorities in Large Law Firms. Patricia Brown Holmes, who leads our White Collar Crime and Corporate Compliance group, serves on the board of directors. Associate Jeannice D. Williams is a member, and vice-chair of the group's Associate Board.
Currently 44 of the largest firms in Chicago participate in this organization, which presents independent programming as well as programming in cooperation with various national, state, city and minority bar organizations, and law schools to help its member law firms identify, recruit, hire and retain minority attorneys and promote them to partnership.
For more information on the Chicago Committee on Minorities in Large Law Firms, visit their Web site: http://www.chicagocommittee.org/.
Georgia Association of Black Women Attorneys
Schiff Hardin is a sponsor of the Georgia Association of Black Women Lawyers ("GABWA") 2010 Glitter Gala and Auction. Schiff Hardin partner and retired Georgia Supreme Court Justice Leah Ward Sears was one of the founding members of GABWA, and Schiff Hardin Associate Tamera M. Woodard is a member of GABWA's Judicial Oversight Committee and is active in GABWA's television show, Legally Speaking.
For more information on the Georgia Association of Black Women Lawyers, visit their Web site: http://www.gabwa.org/.
Institute for Inclusion in the Legal Profession
Schiff Hardin supports and participates in the recently-formed Institute for Inclusion in the Legal Profession (IILP). The IILP’s mission is to drive real progress on diversity in the legal profession through comprehensive outreach and programming that will replace barriers with bridges between legal, judicial, professional, educational, and governmental institutions. Schiff Hardin has committed to one of the IILP’s major initiatives, the Pledge to the Profession, which works to bring more diverse candidates into the legal pipeline through programs that expose students to options for careers in the law, and that help them excel. The Pledge is a commitment by law firms, corporate law departments, and other legal organizations to have at least 10% of their lawyers spend a minimum of one day (or its equivalent) during the year interacting and working with students through existing pipeline diversity programs, and individual classroom visits, among other similar activities.
For more information on the Institute for Inclusion in the Legal Profession, visit their Web site: http://www.theiilp.com/.
Just the Beginning Foundation
Schiff Hardin provides free facilities to the staff of the Just Beginning Foundation, whose mission is to:
Commemorate the contributions of African-Americans to the federal judiciary
Develop and nurture interest in the law among racially and ethnically under-represented young people and support their continued advancement, with the long-term goal of increasing racial and ethnic diversity in the federal judiciary and the legal profession
Educate the public, particularly underprivileged communities, about their legal rights
Collaborate with organizations committed to increasing diversity in the legal profession and the federal judiciary
Additionally, Schiff Hardin partner Patricia Brown Holmes serves as the chair of the organization's board of directors.
For more information on the Just the Beginning Foundation, visit their Web site: http://www.jtbf.org/.
Lawyers in the Classroom
Schiff Hardin participates in this initiative sponsored by the Constitutional Rights Foundation of Chicago that arranges to have lawyers teach legal thinking to students in public schools with high minority populations
The Legal Balance
Schiff Hardin is a founding sponsor of The Legal Balance, a community dedicated to helping women attorneys find the ideal work-life balance. The Legal Balance provides resources that improve the promotion, retention and leadership of women attorneys in the legal profession and beyond.
For more information on The Legal Balance, visit their Web site: http://www.thelegalbalance.com/.
New York City Bar Association Statement of Diversity Principles
Schiff Hardin is among the New York City law firms to sign on to the New York City Bar Association Statement of Diversity Principles. By signing this statement we pledge to facilitate diversity in the hiring, retention and promotion of attorneys and in the elevation of attorneys to leadership positions within our firm. For more information on this initiative, visit: http://www.nycbar.org/diversity/statement-of-diversity-principles.
Policy Statement Regarding the Hiring and Retention of Minority Lawyers
We are a signatory to the "Policy Statement Regarding the Hiring and Retention of Minority Lawyers" issued jointly by the Chicago Bar Association, the Cook County Bar Association, the Asian Bar Association of the Greater Chicago Area, and the Hispanic National Bar Association.
POWER: Opening Doors for Women
Schiff Hardin is an active member and event sponsor and host for POWER: Opening Doors for Women. This organization’s mission is to develop a sustainable pipeline of future women leaders. We help to accomplish this goal by providing a platform for women in C-level and senior management positions and connecting them with high-potential women.
For more information on the POWER: Opening Doors for Women, visit their Web site at http://www.womensnetworkingcommunity.org/.
The Project for Attorney Retention
In 2007, Schiff Hardin became a Founding Member, with 23 of the nation's leading law firms, of the Project for Attorney Retention. This organization works to stem unwanted attrition among lawyers – a benefit for both legal employers and the lawyers themselves – by promoting work-life balance and the advancement of women in the legal profession.
For more information on the Project for Attorney Retention, visit their Web site at http://www.pardc.org/.
Women Everywhere: Partners in Service Project, Inc.
Schiff Hardin is an active participant in the Women Everywhere: Partners in Service Project, in which women attorneys from several law firms and minority bar organizations team up with community organizations on educational and community service projects to assist high school girls as well as women and children in need.
Women Everywhere traditionally plans two events each year. The Community Service Day allows male and female volunteers to give back to their community by volunteering their time to nearly 30 local service agencies dedicated to helping women and children in need. The Educational Program invites high schools girls from around the Chicago area to tour trial or appellate courts while encouraging them to aspire to interesting and challenging careers. Additionally, they sponsor the "Women Everywhere College Scholarship" to provide financial assistance to two enthusiastic college-bound high school girls who want to make a difference.
Schiff Hardin Partner Patricia C. Slovak serves on the organization's board of directors.
For more information about this organization, visit their Web site: http://www.wechicago.org/.
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