A Note from Blank Rome’s Director of Diversity & Inclusion

Perspectives: 2022–2023 Edition

Throughout 2022, we at Blank Rome, just like many companies and organizations, focused on continuing to make a meaningful impact both internally and externally, and worked to advance our diversity, equity, and inclusion ("DEI") goals. Through the dedicated work of our Diversity & Inclusion Committee, firm leadership, affinity groups, and colleagues throughout the firm, we were particularly proud of our recruitment, professional development, and external relationship-building accomplishments, including:

  • Hosting our first DEI Summit in Miami with 130+ colleagues, clients, and friends of the firm in attendance
  • Continuing to recruit and hire a diverse group of laterals and legal business professionals
  • Welcoming a new recruiting manager focused on legal professional recruiting with a passion for and experience in diversity recruiting
  • Enhancing our onboarding process
  • Increasing our LGBTQ+ and women attorney population at the firm
  • Adding four new affinity sub-groups under our BR United affinity group umbrella
  • Achieving a 100 percent retention rate for our Diversity Scholars Program
  • Launching new programs including our BR Advance Women of Color Leadership Development Program and mentorship tracks for our BR Belonging program

We also continued to build out our diversity and inclusion function at Blank Rome with the hiring of Evan Richard as senior diversity and inclusion specialist; reactivated our four working groups, who have been developing a three-year DEI strategic plan that will be rolled out in 2023; and working effectively across functions to manage initiatives and programs.

We are proud of our client collaborations to advance DEI in the legal industry, including a secondment with one of our energy clients; assisting a retail client on a multiyear, multifaceted funding program to “advance entrepreneurial growth, close wealth gaps, and shatter systemic barriers faced by diverse-owned and underrepresented businesses”; partnering with a financial institution client to promote inclusion through an annual Black history art exhibit; hosting a transgender name change clinic with an energy client; participating in Diversity Lab’s Inclusion Blueprint initiative, including the Ally Action Pledge, at the request of one of our financial institution clients; and having various clients speak to our Scholars in our newly created “Coffee and Conversations” dialogue series as an enhancement to our Diversity Scholars program. We look forward to more client collaborations and to identifying new ways to support our clients’ DEI efforts in 2023.

Because of the work we are doing, we have received several awards. Notably, we are Mansfield 5.0 certified by Diversity Lab (having been certified every year since the first iteration) and received the Compass Award from the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (“LCLD”) for the first time based on our involvement with various LCLD initiatives.

We hope you find this issue of Perspectives insightful and motivational as we continue to be intentional about inclusion through impactful DEI work and sustainable strategies.

Krystal Studavent Ramsey

This article was published in the 2022–2023 edition of Blank Rome’s Perspectives Magazine. To view Perspectives, click the image below.

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