B&D Chairman Ben Wilson Quoted in Law360 Stating "Leaders in the Legal Profession Must be Fearless about Diversity"
On January 14, in an article titled "Diversifying Leaders Big Challenge In Law, Microsoft GC Says," Law360 quoted Beveridge & Diamond's Chairman, Ben Wilson (Washington, DC). Ben joined Microsoft general counsel Dev Stahlkopf speaking on a panel on "Equality in Law and the Push for Diversity," part of Reuters' weeklong NEXT program. Alongside them on the diversity panel was Associate Justice Goodwin Liu of the California Supreme Court, who is under consideration as the next California Attorney General. The panel was moderated by Reuters legal affairs columnist Jenna Greene.
The article notes some of the most vexing challenges to broadening diversity in the legal industry including scale and diverse law firm leadership.
Ben emphasized the profession going beyond adding women and minorities, arguing that organizations need to change their compensation systems so that both the senior partner and the younger partner can "share the credit 50/50."
He credits work changes and "women who spoke up on behalf of other women and men, who also needed that flexibility for child-rearing and other reasons," for B&D's leadership achievement of 33% female equity partners.
In closing, Ben explained that "leaders in the legal profession must be fearless about diversity and must be willing to challenge the status quo. He pointed to Stahlkopf (who publicly stood up to the Trump Administration's U.S. Department of Labor) and Microsoft's program to promote more Black employees to manager and executive-level positions in the U.S. by 2025) as examples to follow.
Click here for the full article on Law360 (subscription required).