Blank Rome Participates in Inclusion Blueprint’s “Do Something Hard” Ally Action Pledge
In 2022, Blank Rome participated in Inclusion Blueprint, a joint initiative between ChIPs and Diversity Lab. It provides diversity benchmarks of historically underrepresented groups (e.g., women lawyers, racial/ethnic lawyers, LGBTQ+ lawyers, and lawyers with disabilities) in law firm leadership and across practice groups. Inclusion Blueprint also suggests inclusion efforts for law firms to adopt to ensure their lawyers have fair and equal access to compensation, leadership roles, and other critical career-enhancing opportunities. Inclusion Blueprint is conducted annually and is open to Am Law 200 firms by invitation.
In 2021, Diversity Lab and ChIPs encouraged Inclusion Blueprint participants to commit to implementing at least one “Do Something Hard” action over the next year and to report the progress of these actions. These actions, when put in place by practice group leaders and supported by all partners, signal that they are serious about and committed to making their own group’s systems more equitable.
Blank Rome’s Finance, Restructuring, and Bankruptcy; Intellectual Property & Technology; and Real Estate practice groups committed to participating in the “Ally Action Pledge” during 2022, which requires: the majority of partners in the practice group signing and agreeing to the Pledge, which asks partners to advocate for and champion at least one diverse associate or junior partner by (a) actively managing their workloads to ensure they receive career-enhancing and skill-building work that will help them advance; (b) introducing them to at least three partners who will help them expand their client relationships and/or work opportunities; and (c) introducing them to at least three client contacts who will support their efforts to gain career-enhancing work and/or business generation and credit.
One of our Ally Action Pledge allies, Beth Bernstein Connors, shared, “I think I get as much out of the relationship as my mentee does. Having a connection with an attorney so early in their career allows me to reflect on the things that would have been helpful for me to know or do earlier in my own career and affects how I interact with and invest in our junior attorneys, especially those from historically underrepresented groups. I have benefitted immensely from having allies who were invested in my success throughout my career, and I am so happy to have the opportunity to do the same.”
Mentee Kaitlyn M. West added, “My favorite part of this initiative is having a mentor who takes an active interest in helping me establish, work through, and fulfill my career goals. My mentor and I went to lunch with a client and asked him what he looks for in legal counsel. His answers provided unique insight into our client’s goals and how we can best assure that they are achieved.”
This article was published in the 2022–2023 edition of Blank Rome’s Perspectives Magazine. To view Perspectives, click the image below.