(June 28, 2021) -- As part of Seyfarth's commitment to inclusion and diversity and its focus on continuous improvement in this area, the firm announced today that it has signed up to participate in the 5.0 iteration of the Mansfield Rule, which runs from July 2021 to July 2022.

The Mansfield Rule Certification measures whether law firms have affirmatively considered at least 30 percent women, lawyers from underrepresented racial/ethnic groups, lawyers with disabilities, and LGBTQ+ lawyers for top leadership roles, senior-level lateral hiring, promotions into the equity partnership, and participation in client pitch meetings.

Named after Arabella Mansfield, the first woman admitted to the practice of law in the United States, the Mansfield Rule is a variation of the NFL's "Rooney Rule." The goal of the Mansfield Rule is to boost the representation of diverse lawyers in law firm leadership by broadening the pool of candidates considered for these opportunities.

Piloting the Mansfield Rule since its 2017 inception, Seyfarth joins other "early adopter" firms that have increased the racial and ethnic diversity of its management committees by 30 times the rate of non-Mansfield Rule firms. Notably, over 70 percent of Seyfarth's executive committee are lawyers from underrepresented groups.

"Signing up for Mansfield Certification is always an important initiative for the firm and reaffirms our dedication to being strategic, intentional in our programs, and focused on measurement and accountability in order to get results," said Kori Carew, Seyfarth's chief inclusion & diversity officer.

A recognized industry leader in law firm inclusion and diversity, Seyfarth created The Belonging Project, a first-of-its-kind nationwide collaborative initiative to proactively combat the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on inclusion and diversity in the profession. The firm launched its own "Rooney Presumption" initiative in 2016 which, inspired by the NFL, has helped improve the hiring of diverse candidates across the firm.

The Mansfield Rule was one of the winning ideas from the 2016 Women in Law Hackathon. Seyfarth was an active participant in the Hackathon which was hosted by Diversity Lab in collaboration with Bloomberg Law and Stanford Law School. Diversity Lab creates and experiments with innovative ways to close the gender gap and boost diversity in law firms and legal departments by leveraging data, behavioral science, and design thinking. To learn more about Mansfield Rule 5.0 click here.

Originally published 28 June 2021.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.