Communities

Diversity Statement

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Mission

District of Columbia Bar Communities are committed to advancing the Bar’s core organizational values of diversity and inclusion within the organization and the legal profession as a whole. Communities actively work to foster and promote an inclusive environment that values the unique contributions of our diverse volunteer membership base. Promoting diversity is critical to our shared successes because members provide varied perspectives, experiences, backgrounds, and strengths to ensure Communities uphold the foundational pillars upon which the District of Columbia Bar was created: Enhance access to justice. Improve the legal system. Empower lawyers to achieve.

Diversity and Inclusion in Action

As the largest unified bar in the country, the D.C. Bar has over 100,000 members from across the country and internationally. The Communities boast over 18,000 members spanning the same wideranging geographical expanse. With such a varied membership base, Communities are committed to promoting diversity within its elected leadership in order to recognize and reflect the numerous demographics they serve.

Per the D.C. Bar Communities Policies and Procedures § I. E.3, pg. 4:

The Communities Office shall assist the nominations process by soliciting input from the Communities’ steering committee leadership, Communities’ membership, the Bar at large, and voluntary bar associations. The Screening Committee shall encourage the participation of all segments of the Bar, in accordance with the D.C. Bar’s core organizational values of diversity and inclusion.

If the Screening Committee determines that the pool of potential nominees is not balanced, reflecting the D.C. Bar’s core organizational values of diversity and inclusion, the Screening Committee shall request the community steering committee or the Communities Committee recruit additional persons. The Screening Committee may also attempt to recruit such additional persons as it deems appropriate.

D.C. Bar Communities define diversity as an inclusive concept encompassing, but not limited to, classifications of race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, gender, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, ability status, socioeconomic status, educational attainment, and parental or marital status.

Within the legal profession in particular, secondary characteristics embedded in the broad definition of diversity include specific practice area; type of legal organization or firm; organization or firm size and scope; government, nonprofit, or nonlegal status; and other identifiable characteristics as determined by the Bar.

Achieving actualized, meaningful diversity is an evolutionary process that requires a continued commitment to strategic inclusion by advancing opportunities for members of systemically oppressed groups. To ameliorate structural disparities, Communities disavow discrimination based on any of the aforementioned conditions and strive to remain thoughtful of diversity representation among Steering Committee leadership on a continuous, revolving, annual basis. D.C. Bar Communities reaffirm our commitment to the principles and core values of the District of Columbia Bar.

Resources:

Bar Associations:

American Bar Association
Florida Bar Association
Kentucky Bar Association
New Jersey State Bar Association
New York City Bar Association
Washington State Bar Association

Article:

What is the business case for diversity?

Other:

Association of Legal Administrators Diversity Toolkit

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