(August 20, 2018) – Littler, the world’s largest employment and labor law practice representing management, has achieved Mansfield Certification Plus status for 2018 from Diversity Lab. The firm earned Mansfield Certification by considering at least 30 percent women and minority attorneys for leadership and governance roles, equity partner promotions and senior lateral positions. “Plus” status indicates that, in addition to meeting or exceeding the pipeline consideration requirements for Certification, Littler has successfully reached at least 30 percent women and minority lawyer representation in a notable number of current leadership roles and committees.
“We are proud to earn the Mansfield certification from Diversity Lab,” said Tom Bender and Jeremy Roth, co-managing directors of Littler. “Littler is deeply committed to its culture of diversity and inclusion, and we continue to be laser focused on building a diverse team of lawyers where people of all backgrounds can excel. We applaud Diversity Lab for spearheading this effort to move the needle on diversity and inclusion, and look forward to our continued collaboration.”
The Mansfield Rule was one of the winning ideas from the 2016 Women in Law Hackathon hosted by Diversity Lab in collaboration with Bloomberg Law and Stanford Law School. Named after Arabella Mansfield, the first woman admitted to the practice of law in the U.S., the Mansfield Rule measures whether law firms have affirmatively considered women and minority lawyers – at least 30 percent of the candidate pool – for promotions, senior level hiring and significant leadership roles in the firm.
Littler Shareholder Nina Markey was part of the team that pitched the Mansfield Rule in 2016. Nina and her team developed a concept that would be easy for law firms to implement and would work universally, regardless of differences among law firms.
“We had the biggest and best law firms commit to implementing the Mansfield Rule with just a rough outline of what it involved,” Markey said. “That is a testament to how much this was needed and that firms are seriously looking for ways to improve these efforts with regard to their female and diverse attorneys.”
Littler was one of 44 firms that partnered with Diversity Lab to pilot the inaugural version of the Mansfield Rule from summer 2017 through mid-2018. Additionally, the firm is among those that have already signed on to pilot the Mansfield Rule 2.0 from July 2018 to July 2019, which has been expanded to include LGBTQ+ attorneys.
“Diversity in law firms has been stagnant for decades, so we didn’t expect to change law firm cultures overnight,” said Lisa Kirby, Director of Research & Knowledge Sharing at Diversity Lab. “Although, as a result of the Mansfield Rule, all of the 41 Mansfield Certified firms are now tracking their candidates pipelines for every single path that leads to leadership. And a significant number of firms have increased the diversity of these pipelines, which is a positive step towards diversifying their next generation of leaders.”
As part of the certification, Littler will send two recently promoted, diverse shareholders to a two-day client forum later this year to build relationships with and learn from influential in-house counsel.
Over the past year, Littler has garnered several notable awards and recognitions for its diversity initiatives and inclusive culture. Recently, the firm received the Allstate General Counsel’s Excellence in Diversity Award, was ranked among the Best Law Firms for Women and Minorities by Law360 in its Glass Ceiling Report, and listed on The American Lawyer’s Diversity Scorecard. Additionally, Littler was named a 2018 Top Ten Female Friendly Firm by Yale Law Women, certified as a "Gold Standard Firm" by the Women in Law Empowerment Forum and ranked a top law firm by Working Mother magazine and Vault.
Littler continues to highlight its many diverse attorneys and their contributions to the firm. Earlier this year, Littler launched a new video series called “Littler Celebrates,” which ties in with those months that recognize various heritages/ethnicities, such as Black History, Women’s History, Asian Pacific American Heritage, Pride and Hispanic Heritage. These videos can be viewed here. In addition, the firm recently released a video celebrating the many inspirational women at Littler.
Littler is the largest global employment and labor law practice, with more than 1,500 attorneys in 80 offices worldwide. Littler represents management in all aspects of employment and labor law and serves as a single-source solution provider to the global employer community. Consistently recognized in the industry as a leading and innovative law practice, Littler has been litigating, mediating and negotiating some of the most influential employment law cases and labor contracts on record for over 75 years. Littler Global is the collective trade name for an international legal practice, the practicing member entities of which are separate and distinct professional firms.