Over the past few years, Herrick, Feinstein LLP has implemented a variety of initiatives and programs that demonstrate our commitment to diversity, specifically as it relates to our community involvement. The spirit of our commitment is captured in our policy which guides all that we do, including the service providers we chose and the vendors whom we engage:
We embrace diversity in our profession. We encourage persons of diverse sex, race, color, ethnicity, religion, national origin, marital status, transgender or sexual orientation, gender, age, gender expression and identity, ancestry, parental status and disability:
Diversity enriches our fundamental culture of respect and encouragement for the individual attorney, and for inclusion of the individual within the family which is our firm. Diversity enhances our ability to understand our clients and to serve them better. Diversity is therefore a core value informing Herrick's policies and practices for the recruitment, training, retention and promotion of attorneys.
The following are some of the highlights of the work we have accomplished.
Herrick now has a strong Women's Initiative Committee. A sub-committee of women partners, counsel and associates launched out of the Diversity Committee, the Women's Initiative Committee has created mentor circles for the women attorneys at the Firm and has begun a partnership with Dress for Success (an organization that promotes the economic independence of disadvantaged women by providing professional attire, a network of support and the career development tools to help women thrive in work and in life) including hosting multiple Dress for Success Suit Drives. The Committee also sponsors both formal and informal gatherings for the Firm's women attorneys, such as a showing of the documentary "Miss Representation" (a movie about how the media portrays women) followed by dinner and a discussion.
Over the past few years, the Firm has brought in outside consultants to conduct mandatory, interactive firm-wide diversity training for attorneys.
Herrick has also instituted a Cultural Heritage Speaker Series in which different speakers come to the Firm to deliver presentations on various cultures. We have hosted a variety of speakers including Jennifer 8. Lee, author of The Fortune Cookie Chronicles, who spoke about her quest to understand the history of American Chinese food and the people who made it, Zachary Carter, Esq., who spoke in honor of Black History Month, Tom Ude from Lambda Legal, who spoke in honor of GLBT pride month, Michael Rosen, who spoke about his book, What Else But Home: Seven Boys and an American Journey Between the Projects and the Penthouse, Carol Robles-Roman, the deputy Mayor and the highest ranking Latina in New York City government, who spoke about her career, Min Jin Lee author of the Free Food for Millionaires,who spoke about growing up as a Korean immigrant first in Queens, and then later in college, in law school and as a writer, and Rhonda Joy McLean, the Deputy GC at Time Inc., and author of The Little Black Book of Success who spoke about her experience as one of three black girls in her grade school, her time practicing as a lawyer, and advice she had for others in navigating law firm life, regardless of race.
This year was our first year working with Legal Outreach - a program that, through a rigorous application process, takes high school students and works with them on life skills as well as academics and law throughout their four years of high school. Four of these students spent a week at Herrick at the end of July. We had teams of coaches who met and worked with the students to get them ready for a Moot Court style oral argument held on the last day. These students were fantastic - smart, tenacious, thoughtful, and our attorneys really enjoyed working with them.
In 2012, we also started an Affinity Group for our LGBT attorneys. Led by a partner and an associate, the LGBT Affinity Group held meetings, and sponsored an event at the Stonewall Inn where an attorney gave a brief discussion about the riots and the history of Stonewall, after which everyone enjoyed a drink at the bar to celebrate the end of Gay Pride Week.
For the past three years, Herrick has partnered with the Korean American Lawyers Association of Greater New York ("KALAGNY") to host a Resume and Mock Interview Workshop for law students who belong to the organization.
Lastly, Herrick has, for many years, partnered with Practicing Attorneys for Law Students Programs ("PALS"), a group that provides career and skills development for minorities in the legal profession. Herrick attorneys actively mentor minority law students through this program, and the Firm has sponsored and volunteered at many events for this group such as their 25th Anniversary Celebration and their annual Resume and Interview Skills Workshop which they put on for minority law students across the tri-state area.