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Firm Initiatives

Diversity Committee
Chaired by Chief Diversity Officer and former Chancellor of the Philadelphia Bar Association, Albert S. Dandridge, III, the Firm's Diversity Committee is comprised of professional staff, associates, junior and senior partners of the Firm. The Diversity Committee meets monthly and is tasked with ensuring that the Firm proactively develops and implements activities that promote diversity. In addition, the Committee:

  • Educates the community-at-large about issues affecting minority attorneys.
  • Participates in and supports community activities that advance diversity.
  • Drafts and reviews policies that support inclusion within Schnader and promote diversity with our clients and vendors.

For additional information, please see Diversity Committee

Recruiting and Retention
The Firm's Hiring Committee, comprised of partners and associates, proactively recruits from a diverse pool of candidates for attorney positions in our eight offices. The Firm sponsors seminars and conferences on diversity and inclusion with the goal of raising awareness of and sensitivity to the issues that our diverse attorneys face. This, in turn, creates an open and welcoming environment, resulting in increased retention of our diverse attorneys.
  • The Firm is an original signatory of and remains committed to the Philadelphia Bar Association's Statement of Goals for Increasing Minority Representation and Retention.
  • Through participation in programs such as the Philadelphia Diversity Law Group (PDLG) and the Philadelphia Area Diversity Job Fair, we offer opportunities to diverse and underrepresented candidates to participate in our Summer Associate Program.
  • Our Pittsburgh office participates in the Western Pennsylvania Diversity Initiative. In addition, it regularly works with minority summer interns from the Allegheny County Bar Association's Minority Summer Clerkship Program and High School Minority Summer Law Internship Program, which recruits students predominantly from Pittsburgh high schools.
  • Attorneys in our San Francisco office participate in the Career and Networking Expo held by BALIF (Bay Area Lawyers for Individual Freedom).

Individual Diversity Action Plan
To heighten awareness of diversity issues in our workplace, Schnader implemented an Individual Diversity Action Plan. Each attorney at Schnader pledges to play a role in achieving greater diversity in our professional environment. To that end, each year, our attorneys formulate an Individual Diversity Action Plan and commit to participating in multiple diversity-enhancing events, including mentoring, planning, sponsoring and/or attending programs that advance diversity and inclusion at the Firm and within the community. Below are some of our attorneys' experiences:

"I am actively involved as a board member and officer of a nonprofit recreational swim team that focuses on inclusion of minority swimmers through scholarships, advertising and recruiting practices. Most recently, we awarded scholarships to four swimmers in low-income Hispanic families who told us they would otherwise not have participated. We also increased the Spanish-speaking members of the board…in the hopes of further outreach to the community." Craig Hodgson

"I attended the "Unmasking Diversity Summit" to learn more about what law firms and clients in the San Francisco Bay Area and elsewhere are doing to promote diversity and will report on the information shared in the year-end report regarding the San Francisco office's diversity efforts and activities." Sheila Doyle Kelley

"Each year Equality Forum, a Philadelphia-based national and international LBGT civil rights organization, hosts an annual conference on a wide variety of legal, social and religious issues affecting members of this community. As a former board member, I regularly attend the conference. Most recently, I attended the National Legal Panel. The discussion focused on the same sex marriage cases that came before the U.S. Supreme Court and issues surrounding anti-discrimination." Stephenie W. Yeung

Women's Initiative
Schnader's Women's Initiative continues the Firm's principles of diversity and inclusion, and provides its members with a forum for the Firm's women attorneys in leadership positions to mentor young attorneys as they face the challenges of professional development and advancement. In addition, the Women's Initiative creates networking opportunities to connect the Firm's young women attorneys with leaders in the community. For additional information about the activities of our Women's Initiative, please see Women's Initiative Activities.

In addition, Schnader strives to foster a work environment where women thrive. The Firm is proud of the success and recognition of our women attorneys. For additional information about notable accomplishments of some of our women attorneys, please see Schnader Women Receive Diversity Awards and Accolades.