Affirmative Action, Biglaw, Labor / Employment, Minority Issues, Racism, Staff Attorneys / Discovery Attorneys, Yolanda Young

Covington and Its ‘Staff Attorney Ghetto’?


We have long been committed to equal opportunity at all levels of hiring. Our ongoing efforts show positive results. In the case of our staff attorneys, we’ve been very successful in recruiting African-American lawyers. We attribute our success to a number of factors. We offer competitive compensation and benefits, which we will likely further enhance in the near future. This includes the innovative benefit of pay for pro bono work, and our staff attorneys average about 70 hours of pro bono work a year. Our staff attorneys are a stable, productive and respected part of our workforce. Part of this stability can be attributed to our recruitment process, which has benefited from the great number of referrals from our current staff attorneys.

Overall, African-Americans are about 5% of our combined partners, counsel and associates. While we have had less success in terms of our percentage of African-American lawyers in these groups, it is not because we have made less of an effort, and we are making progress here as well. For instance, roughly 10% of the lawyers we hired during the past two years are African-American. Over time, we are hopeful that these percentages or higher percentages will be reflected in our overall numbers.

Law Firm Segregation Reminiscent of Jim Crow [Huffington Post]
Georgetown Law Grad Says Big Law Segregation Reminiscent of Jim Crow [Legal Blog Watch]
Ex-Staff Attorney Takes Aim at BigLaw Minority Hiring [WSJ Law Blog]
Spade Project

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