Adams and Reese has earned the 2023 Minority Corporate Counsel Association (MCCA) Approved SILVER Seal.
This prestigious accreditation is bestowed upon law firms and corporate legal departments as a national framework for successfully establishing sustainable diversity, equity, and inclusion strategies and achieving actionable solutions.
“We are honored to receive this MCCA Approved accreditation, recognizing our continued commitment to our DEI strategies, programs, and actionable results,” said Clarence Wilbon, Executive Committee Chair of Adams and Reese. In 2023, Wilbon, a Litigation Partner and former DEI Committee Chair, became the first African American EC Chair in the law firm’s 72-year history since being founded in 1951. “Along with our clients, partners, colleagues and fellow law firms, we uphold a priority to hire, retain, and promote diverse professionals, and remain out in front in building a culture that fosters an inclusive and diverse legal profession.”
MCCA is the preeminent advisor to C-suites across corporate America on data-driven, DEI solutions for sustainable change. MCCA Approved was launched in 2022 as a framework to encourage law firms and corporate legal departments to “Do Better,” by providing strategy and solutions; “Lead Better,” by educating leaders to be more empathetic and effective; and “Change for the Better,” by ensuring consistency from change-makers.
“For the past 25 years, MCCA has served as a strategic partner for law firms and corporate organizations in the DEI space. As a result, we understand the challenges organizations are facing, and we know that a concerted and meaningful effort to diversify corporate America must successfully bring everyone to the table, including those at the top” said Jean Lee, MCCA President and CEO. “MCCA Approved is distinguishable from other diversity initiatives because it is focused on impact that identifies systemic challenges in the recruiting, retention and promotion of diverse attorneys, which is critical to DEI sustainability.”
MCCA Approved SILVER Seal requirements include industry research; law firms participating in corporate demographic diversity surveys; law firms having a dedicated DEI Committee, along with formal retention strategies; and analysis of recruiting programs and career fair attendance.
“Our DEI committee works with executive committee management and administration to develop sustainable DEI programs that impact attorneys and staff in offices throughout our entire regional footprint,” said Jeff Brooks, Adams and Reese DEI Committee Chair and Executive Committee Member. “These initiatives and ensuing results have been transformative, inspiring progress, and enhancing our representation to clients that resembles the diversity of their businesses, executives, and their communities in which they work and live.”
In 2022, Adams and Reese achieved Mansfield Rule 5.0 Certification, a national standard by Diversity Lab recognizing law firms that demonstrate commitment to DEI and make progress in diversifying leadership.
Adams and Reese has career pipeline programs for diverse high school, college, and law students, such National Association for Law Placement/Street Law Legal Diversity Pipeline, ABA Legal Opportunity Scholarship, and Memphis Bar Association Summer Law Internship.
DEI mentorship programs for Adams and Reese associates and young partners include Advancement, Recruitment, and Retention of Women (ARROW), AdvanceLaw Diversity Mentorship, Diverse Attorney Advancement and Promotion (DAAP), and Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD), among others.