Letter From The President Of The Washington Metropolitan Area Chapter Of The Association Of Corporate Counsel-America

2004-04-01 01:00

To The Readers Of The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel:

Iamveryproudofthecommitmentandcontributionsthatourchaptermembershavemadetopromoteadiverseprofession.Ourgoalistolayafoundationtohelpmakeourprofessionreflectiveoftheworkforceingeneralandthecommunitiesthatlawyersserve.WMACCArecognizesthattherearestillbarriersthatneedtobeaddressed,andwehaveaninitiativetotrytobridgethem.
In2003,WMACCAreceivedagrantfromTheMinorityCorporateCounselassociationforadiversityprogram.WMACCAhascreateda summerinternshipforlawstudentsfromlawschoolsintheDCandBaltimoreareas.Diversityforthisprogrammeanstryingtoprovideopportunitiestopopulationswithinlawschoolsthatmaylackaccesstoand/orknowledgeofin-houselegalpractice.Ourmembershaverespondedwonderfullytothisinitiative,andwelookforwardtoplacingourfirst"class"ofinternsthissummer!
Weencourageyoutotalktoandworkwithyouroutsidelawfirmstogetthemtoimprovetheirdiversityprograms,includingsupportforscholarshipsandinternshipopportunities.Manyofourmembershavealsosoughtpartneringrelationshipswithminorityandwomen-ownedfirms.Togethertheseeffortswillenhancethediversityofournextgenerationofattorneys.
Lastfall,WMACCAstarteditsDiversityForumtogivemembersanarenainwhichtodiscussdiversityissues-issuesofrace,color,sex,religion,etc.,thattheybelievearehavinganaffectontheirprofessionallives.MembershavealsoexpressedaninterestinexploringissuesofalternativeworkarrangementsundertherubricofthisForum.InJanuary,ourmonthlyluncheonprogramexploreddiversityissues,andwehadalivelydiscussionofstrategiesfordiverseattorneystosucceedintheircareers,andwaysinwhichallofuscanmovetheprofessioninthediversitydirection.InFebruary,ourLaborandEmploymentForumpresented"EmergingIssuesInColorDiscrimination."NaomiC.Earp,ViceChairfortheU.S.EqualEmploymentOpportunityCommission,ledthediscussiononissuesofcolordiscriminationinthemultiracialworld.Thesearedifficult,butimportantissues - astheyoftenarisewithinasingle"racial"groupandgotodeep-seatedculturaltensionsthatmanyminoritygroupsfinddifficulttofaceanddiscuss.
Ihopetocontinuethesediscussionswithyouatourmanywonderfulprogramsandevents.Inparticular,IhopetoseeyouatoursecondannualspringsocialonSaturday,May15.Wewillrelax,enjoyourdinnerdanceandcasinonight,andmeetcolleaguesasTheSpiritofWashingtontakesusdownthePotomacRiver.Joinus!
Pleasefeelfreetocontactmeatkbarlow@tbco.biz. WMACCA'sotherboardmembersandIwouldverymuchenjoyhearingfromyou.

Sincerely,
KathyBarlow