To develop awareness of the issues surrounding diversity, equity, and inclusion, Schnader presents continuing education training throughout the year and participates in diversity conferences and innovative programs. Some of our recent activities include:
The Allegheny County Academy of Trial Lawyers’ First Program on Diversity (2022)
The Allegheny County Academy of Trial Lawyers hosted its first annual Program on Diversity on September 21, Gender Equality in the Legal Profession. The panel presentation was hosted by a distinguished group of experts, including Schnader’s Keith E. Whitson, discussing why and how to advance gender equity in the workplace.
DEI Lunch and Learns (2022)
Schnader organized and held firm-wide “lunch and learns” in our continuing effort to learn about, and gain exposure to, the lives of different communities, the hardships and discrimination they face, and how we can help. During Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month and Jewish American Heritage Month in May of 2022, we held a presentation about the history of anti-Asian racism in the U.S. and a program about a recent report on the state of anti-Semitism issued by the American Jewish Congress.
Antidiscrimination and Sensitivity Training (2022)
Lisa Rodriguez, co-chair of our DEI Committee, Firm Ombudsperson, and managing partner of our Cherry Hill, New Jersey office, attended this training sponsored by the Association of the Federal Bar of New Jersey.
California Minority Counsel Program’s In-Session Conference (2022)
Jennifer Thai, partner in our San Francisco office, participated in this program, which focused on trends in the legal industry, the effect on DEI issues, and strategies for retaining attorneys of color.
Dr. Martin Luther King Day Celebrations
In each of our offices, attorneys and staff participate in these annual programs.
Eradicate Hate Global Summit (2021)
Schnader participated in the Eradicate Hate Global Summit 2021. Judge Timothy Lewis, co-chair of our ADR Practice Group, spoke at the Summit on potential criminal remedies used to combat hate crimes.
Expert Tips on Professionalism (2020)
Edward J. Sholinsky, chair of our Hiring Committee, participated in a panel discussion about “Expert Tips on Professionalism and Etiquette in a Virtual Business World.” The event was sponsored by the Minority Student Program (MSP) at Rutgers Law School, which Schnader supports through sponsorships. Sholinsky spoke about effective and practical ways of communicating, practicing law, and conducting business given the virtual conditions present during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Appellate Project
Schnader supports this initiative designed to build diversity in the field of appellate law. Judge Timothy Lewis serves on the Project’s advisory board.
Small Actions, Big Impact: Developing Skills to Become an Effective Ally (2021)
Keith Whitson, managing partner of our Pittsburgh Office, participated in a presentation for the Homer S. Brown Division of the Allegheny County Bar Association on how to be an effective ally.
Toward a Culture of Inclusion (2020-2021)
A number of our Pittsburgh-based attorneys and staff participated in the Pittsburgh Legal Diversity & Inclusion Coalition’s “Toward a Culture of Inclusion” year-long program. The initiative included presentations, facilitated conversations about race, small group discussions, and ideas for use in the participants’ workplaces. The program culminated in participants achieving “Ally Ready” certification.
Career Advocate Program (2019-2021)
The managing partner of our Pittsburgh office helped to plan the Pittsburgh Legal Diversity & Inclusion Coalition’s Career Advocate Program, and led the training for participants in 2019. Schnader’s Pittsburgh office is one of five organizations serving as a model for the initial implementation of the program, which focuses on mentoring diverse and women attorneys with at least four years of professional experience.
International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution (“CPR”) (2019)
Judge Timothy Lewis received CPR’s 2019 Award for Outstanding Contribution to Diversity in ADR.
Philadelphia Diversity Law Group (PDLG) Symposium (2018)
Schnader was involved in the 2018 Symposium for PDLG, held at The Union League in Philadelphia. The event was titled, “Diversity in the First Chair: Symposium on Women and Diverse Lawyers in the Courtroom and Boardroom.” Albert S. Dandridge, III, chair of Schnader’s Securities Practice Group, co-chaired the planning committee for the Symposium. Ralph G. Wellington, co-chair of Schnader’s Alternative Dispute Resolution group, participated in a panel discussion about “A View from Male Attorney Mentors and Women and Diverse Mentees.” Hon. Timothy K. Lewis, also co-chair of Schnader’s ADR Practice Group, introduced the special guest luncheon speaker, Hon. Shira Scheindlin, Retired District Judge, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York. More details about the Symposium are here.
Development of “Youth Court” for Manchester Academic Charter School (2016-2018)
Schnader assisted the Manchester Academic Charter School in creating and running a “youth court,” which uses the principles of restorative justice to address school disciplinary matters. The students serve both as advocates and judges in hearings to address student infractions with the goal of restoring all participants into the school community.
PDLG Fellows Program Alumni Conference (2017)
Schnader is a founding member of the Philadelphia Diversity Law Group (PDLG), which encourages and supports diversity in the practice of law. PDLG’s Fellows Program provides summer associate placements to diverse law students. The 2017 conference featured Fellows Program alumni, who shared their insights and discussed key career development strategies. Albert S. Dandridge, III moderated a “Panel of Stars,” who discussed their legal careers.
The Art of the Pitch (2017)
Through PDLG’s Art of the Pitch program, diverse attorneys gave a mock pitch before the general counsel of major corporations. Schnader participants received feedback and suggestions for improvement.
Kiss, Bow, or Shake Hands (2016)
Schnader welcomed Terri Morrison, co-author of five books on global business, including Kiss, Bow, or Shake Hands, on June 2, 2016. Ms. Morrison spoke about the importance of understanding diverse cultures and their business etiquette in order to succeed in the global marketplace and to develop talent within the organization.
Diversity & Inclusion Symposium (2015)
In 2015, PDLG presented a Diversity & Inclusion Symposium titled, “Best Practices for Retaining & Promoting Diverse Talent.” Albert S. Dandridge, III served as moderator for a panel, “The Roles Leaders Play: How to be Part of the Solution,” and he spoke at the closing plenary. The Symposium also featured discussions on implicit bias and generational diversity.
Subtle, Unconscious, and Implicit Bias (2015)
During Schnader’s annual attorney retreat, the Honorable Timothy K. Lewis, Albert S. Dandridge, III, Theresa E. Loscalzo, and William H. Brown presented a training session, “Subtle, Unconscious, and Implicit Bias in the Legal Profession.” The discussion focused on best practices to overcome bias in work assignments, client development opportunities, mentoring and sponsoring relationships, performance evaluations, and compensation.
Unconscious Bias (2015)
On September 21, 2015, globally renowned diversity specialist, Ritu Bhasin, presented a workshop to the Firm on “Unconscious Bias.” Using neuroscience research to support her thesis, she addressed specific biases and blind spots that manifest in legal environments, including the “stereotype effect,” and its impact on women and diverse lawyers and staff.
Gender Pay Equity (2014)
Schnader hosted a panel discussion titled, “Gender Pay Equity in Compensation: Why it Matters – What to Do About It.” The program addressed the recommendations from two 2013 reports by the ABA Presidential Task Force on Gender Equity: “Closing the Gap: A Road Map for Achieving Gender Pay Equity in Law Firm Partner Compensation;” and “Power of the Purse: How General Counsel Can Impact Pay Equity for Women Lawyers.” Panelists included Roberta Liebenberg, chair of Fine, Kaplan and Black; Katherine Hatton, general counsel for Robert Wood Johnson Foundation; Sophia Lee, former chief counsel for litigation at Sunoco; and Susan Letterman White of Letterman White Consulting. Following the presentation there was a discussion of Schnader’s policies and opportunities for improvement.
Diversity in the Legal Profession (2013)
Schnader and the Philadelphia Bar Association co-hosted a day-long “National Roundtable on Diversity in the Legal Profession.” Moderated by Albert S. Dandridge, III, the program featured Michael K. Tucker of Avis Budget Group, Jannie K. Lau of InterDigital, and Robin H. Sangston of Cox Communications, Inc. Topics included the business case for diversity and inclusion, benchmarks to measure success, cultural competency, subtle and unconscious bias, and best practices for the retention and advancement of women and diverse attorneys.