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Posted By Administration, Thursday, January 9, 2020


By Michael Lee               2020 SCCBA President


Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) improves results and creativity. Research shows that even the mere presence of people from diverse backgrounds results in better performance. McKinsey and Company studied over 1,000 companies from 12 countries in 2018 and found that greater diversity in the workforce results in greater profitability and value creation. Additionally, on the executive level, there was a statistically significant correlation between diverse leadership and better financial performance. In fact, ethnically diverse organizations are 35% more likely to outperform their peers.[1]


Despite the obvious economic benefits of D&I, and the moral imperative that D&I is just “right,” companies still fail to include diverse employees and continue to exclude those who do make it into their organizations. Our profession, the legal profession, remains severely behind even the corporate world in the area of D&I.  


It is not enough that minorities are present. I found this survey to be shocking. According to a report released in 2019 by Managing Intellectual Property Magazine, almost two thirds of the participants in a global survey of in-house counsel who specialize in intellectual property state that they have been discriminated against for being a minority.[2] The survey’s definition of minority includes gender and sexual orientation.


I would like to make 2020 the year of clear-focus on the issue of increasing diversity and including those who are diverse within our profession.


Please join me, with the Bar Association, in tackling this intractable problem. Please tell your colleagues and have them become members of the Bar Association so we can work together. Please celebrate with me on January 29th at the SCCBA offices to install our new officers and begin the year with a conversation of how we can uplift our profession and our society. 






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