Our Commitment to Diversity
The long-term success of Dow Lohnes depends upon the diversity of our work force. Diversity encourages innovative problem solving, allowing us to provide the most effective and successful legal counsel to our clients. We demand tolerance, respect, and fair treatment of everyone in the Firm, regardless of one’s gender, age, race, sexual orientation, national origin, religion, disability, or any other protected category. We commit to recruit, develop, and retain a diverse team of attorneys and support the advancement of diversity within the legal profession. This dedication to advance the diversity among our attorneys and staff improves the morale, productivity, and success of the Firm. A firm-wide Diversity Committee, composed of partners, counsel, and associates of varied backgrounds and experience, serves as the mainspring of our diversity efforts.
Recruiting, Retention, and Advancement
Dow Lohnes recruits at law schools with diverse student bodies and works with search firms to provide diverse candidate slates for each open attorney position. The Firm contributes to and supports affinity groups at law schools across the country. These contributions include lawyer participation on panels, hosting of receptions, sponsorship of regional conferences, symposia, and publications, and recruitment at job fairs.
The Firm seeks to retain excellent attorneys regardless of background. To that end, the Firm supports committees and initiatives, including the following, which foster the professional and personal development of our attorneys:
- Professional Development Committee – The Professional Development Committee initiates and oversees a variety of programs developed to assist in the professional development of our attorneys, including evaluations, in-house training, and continuing legal education programs. Our Professional Development Committee includes partners from each practice group and associates, and works closely with the Firm’s full-time Director of Professional Development.
- Mentor Program – Our formal three-tiered mentor program provides associates with mentoring relationships geared to the different stages of their professional development and career needs. The Firm also provides non-partner attorneys, third-year and above, the opportunity to request a second mentor from outside his or her practice group. This program builds strong personal and mentoring relationships that cross practice-group lines and provides associates with a sounding board and an additional coaching resource from a lawyer who is not also one of their regular supervisors.
- Alternative Work Arrangements – Delivering on our pledge to maintain a flexible work environment, the Firm adopted an alternative work arrangement policy for our attorneys. This policy permits both male and female attorneys, in consultation with their practice groups and firm management, to devise part-time or flexible work arrangements.
- Diverse Attorney Networking Group – Our diverse attorney networking affinity group provides a support network and promotes informal mentoring relationships. Monthly meetings offer a forum for attorneys to discuss issues and ideas relating to professional and personal development, recruiting, and retention of minority attorneys.
- Women’s Forum – The Firm sponsors a Women's Forum to enhance our efforts in recruiting, retaining, and advancing women attorneys. The Women’s Forum focuses primarily on:
- Creating opportunities for women attorneys to network and strengthen relationships with colleagues, clients, professional associations, and community organizations.
- Establishing a support system, while providing opportunities to discuss challenges, strategies, and solutions for women in the legal profession.
- Building and enhancing business development skills and opportunities.
- Supporting both informal and formal mentoring relationships.
- Guiding and assisting the Firm’s efforts to attract top female legal talent from leading law schools and other sources.
At Dow Lohnes, minority, women, and LGBT attorneys actively participate in the Firm’s governance by serving on a variety of policy and strategy committees. Women hold many key positions in our Firm, including seats on the Firm’s Board of Directors, positions as Practice Group Leaders and Administrators, and the post of General Counsel to the Firm.
Representative Diversity Initiatives
Dow Lohnes recognizes the unique challenges faced by diverse attorneys in the legal profession and sponsors organizations dedicated to achieving diversity within the profession. Our lawyers also actively participate and assume leadership roles in these organizations.
- Atlanta Legal Diversity Consortium (ALDC) – Dow Lohnes helped to found the ALDC, and members of the Firm actively serve on the ALDC Board of Directors. ALDC, in collaboration with its members, enhances diversity in the legal community by offering programs, events, information, and other resources focused on the areas of recruiting, mentoring, retention, and promotion of minorities in the legal profession. Firm members actively participate in ALDC’s ongoing STAR (Strategic Training, Advancement and Retention) Lawyer Training Program.
- Affiliations and Support - The Firm supports a number of national and regional diversity organizations and has sponsored many organizations and events, including the following:
- Various local, state and national bar associations including the Hispanic Bar Association, National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) and the Women’s Bar Association of the District of Columbia.
- Flex-Time Lawyers – Flex-Time Lawyers focuses on work/life balance and the retention and promotion of lawyers.
- Minority Corporate Counsel Association (MCCA) Mid-Atlantic-Regional Diversity Dinner and the annual Creating Pathways to Diversity Conference.
- National Association of Women Lawyers (NAWL) – NAWL promotes the interests and progress of women lawyers.
- DC Minority Attorney Networking Series (DC MAN) –The DC MAN Series brings together attorneys of color from firms, government, corporations, and non-profit organizations to hear prominent speakers and to provide minority attorneys an opportunity to focus on professional development and to build alliances with colleagues practicing law in the DC-Metro area.
- Washington Area Legal Recruitment Administrators Association (WALRAA) Annual Networking and Diversity Reception.
- Pro Bono Representation – Our attorneys provide first-rate legal representation to those who are unable to afford an attorney. The Firm values this important commitment to our community, to the Firm, and to our profession.
- Firm Contributions – Dow Lohnes also regularly contributes financially and otherwise to charitable legal organizations that provide legal services to underrepresented communities and/or that promote diversity within the legal profession, including: Atlanta Legal Aid Society; Atlanta Volunteer Lawyers Foundation Saturday Program; Atlanta Association of Black Journalists; Ayuda, Inc.; DC Bar Pro Bono Program; International Just the Beginning Foundation; Lawyers' Committee for Human Rights and Urban Affairs; Legal Aid Society; the Washington Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs; and the Whitman Walker Clinic Legal Services Program.