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Blank Rome Continues Longstanding Partnership with Diversity Lab to Pilot 'Mansfield Rule 4.0'

Blank Rome LLP is pleased to announce that it is participating in Diversity Lab’s Mansfield Rule 4.0, which measures whether law firms have affirmatively considered at least 30 percent women, attorneys of color, attorneys with disabilities, and LGBTQ+ attorneys for governance roles, equity partner promotions, formal client pitch opportunities, and senior lateral positions.

Blank Rome was a pilot member of the inaugural Mansfield Rule 1.0 in June 2017, and has recommitted to each subsequent iteration. Blank Rome achieved Mansfield Certification for Mansfield Rule 1.0 and 2.0, and also achieved Mansfield Certification Plus status last year for successfully reaching at least 30 percent diverse lawyer representation in a number of leadership roles and committees.

“Blank Rome is honored to continue partnering with Diversity Lab on the Mansfield Rule initiative,” said Grant S. Palmer, Managing Partner and CEO at Blank Rome. “From the pilot program to the next iteration, Mansfield Rule 4.0, Blank Rome has been actively engaged and dedicated to advancing diverse lawyers both within our Firm and in the legal industry at large, guided by our founders’ mission that we foster a workplace environment where people of all backgrounds can gather to practice law and bring their diversity of ideas, attributes, and experiences to our Firm’s culture, our clients, and to the communities in which we live and work.”

“We are proud of our commitment to the principles of the Mansfield Rule to increase and sustain a more diverse and inclusive attorney complement at the Firm and to continue our longstanding collaboration with the Diversity Lab team,” added Sophia Lee, Partner and Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer at Blank Rome. “Our ongoing engagement in this innovative and important program is part of Blank Rome’s affirmation of diversity, equity, and inclusion principles as well as our commitment to meaningful progress in the legal industry and beyond.”

Working with an advisory board of participating firms, Diversity Lab has expanded and made improvements to the Mansfield Rule each year to ensure that it is positioned to effectively and inclusively boost diversity at the leadership levels in law firms. Mansfield Rule 4.0, which will run from July 15, 2020 to July 14, 2021, adds a new category for the Certification Plus designation that asks firms to ensure that at least 30 percent of the attorneys staffed on matters resulting from formal pitch meetings during the certification period were historically underrepresented lawyers.

Inspired by the NFL’s Rooney Rule, the Mansfield Rule was one of the winning ideas from the 2016 Women in Law Hackathon hosted by Diversity Lab in collaboration with Bloomberg Law and Stanford Law School. According to Diversity Lab, the program’s elements and operations are grounded in behavioral science research, including the 30 percent requirement, which researchers have found is the critical mass necessary to disrupt biases.