DLA Piper earns 12th consecutive perfect score on Human Rights Campaign's Corporate Equality Index
DLA Piper is pleased to announce that for the 12th consecutive year the firm has earned a perfect score from the Corporate Equality Index (CEI), a national survey and report from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation. With a top rating of 100 percent, awarded to firms that "took concrete steps to ensure greater equity for LGBTQ workers and their families in the form of comprehensive policies, benefits and practices," DLA Piper was recognized as a "Best Place to Work for LGBTQ Equality" in the 2020 report.
More than 1,000 companies were featured in the report, which evaluates LGBTQ-related policies and practices including non-discrimination workplace protections, domestic partner benefits, transgender-inclusive healthcare benefits, competency programs and public engagement with the LGBTQ community.
“The best teams are by definition diverse, and this award recognizes our commitment to fostering a diverse workforce and inclusive culture, which enables us to deliver the highest level of service to our clients,” said Fenimore Fisher, DLA Piper’s chief diversity and inclusion officer. “While we are honored to have secured a perfect score, we hope to enhance our efforts to attract, promote and retain LGBTQ lawyers and staff as well as advocate for equity.”
As part of DLA Piper's Diversity and Inclusion initiative, the firm’s global LGBTQ Resource Group, formally named Iris, serves as a forum and advisory body on matters important to the LGBTQ community and provides opportunities for engagement in a variety of initiatives. Additionally, the firm annually celebrates LGBT Pride Month in the US with hundreds of lawyers and staff, including straight allies, participating in nationally video-conferenced workshops designed to raise awareness of LGBTQ-related issues.
In 2019, the firm’s global co-chairman and Americas co-chairman, Roger Meltzer, was named to the National Law Journal’s inaugural list of Equality Trailblazers, honoring lawyers who have made outstanding efforts to impact gender and LGBTQ equality in both their respective firms and the legal industry as a whole.
Meltzer has overseen market-leading initiatives within the firm and the legal industry related to advancing diversity and inclusion, including the firm's adoption of the Mansfield Rule, designed and continuously refined through Diversity Lab, an incubator for innovative ideas and solutions that boost diversity and inclusion in law. The Mansfield Rule was inspired by the NFL's Rooney Rule, named for former Pittsburgh Steelers chairman Dan Rooney, which requires every NFL team to interview at least one minority candidate for head coach vacancies.
Last year, the firm achieved Mansfield 2.0 Certified Plus status, indicating that, in addition to considering candidate pools made up of at least 30 percent diverse lawyers, the firm also achieved actual representation of at least 30 percent women, lawyers of color and LGBTQ+ lawyers in key leadership roles, partner promotions and lateral hires.
DLA Piper also began collaborating with StartOut, the nation's largest nonprofit organization supporting LGBTQ entrepreneurs, in 2019 to host the organization's StartOut Growth Lab accelerator in its San Francisco location. The Growth Lab provides LGBTQ founders with support for their emerging businesses through a program custom tailored to the participating entrepreneurs' goals, including advice and mentoring from DLA Piper attorneys and other professionals, as well as education, access to capital sources and networking opportunities.