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07:50 AM
Breakfast and Check-In
08:50 AM
Opening Comments
09:00 AM
Leading Through Uncertainty: Prioritizing DEI Through Times of Transition

We do not have a crystal ball but for a moment, let’s pretend we do. What does the workplace look like? Will we go back to brick and mortar or continue to work remotely? What will this mean for DEI initiatives? While the virus has pushed us out of our comfort zones, it has also presented a unique opportunity to look at our options and evolve as professionals and as humans.

This panel will explore:

  • Finding new ways of adapting to the challenges ahead
  • Prioritizing DEI initiatives in a hybrid workplace
  • The GC’s responsibility as a leader in the New Normal










09:45 AM
Disrupting the Noah’s Ark Approach to DEI: Creating a Culture of Inclusion

According to Bible scholars, there are no unicorns left in the world because they never made it on to the Ark. It is thought that they were running late or they had a disagreement with Noah. No one is quite sure. The point is that who knows how many other creatures missed the boat! In The Loudest Duck by Laura Liswood, she writes that at some point, corporate diversity came to mean the inclusion of at least two of every kind. Far too many managers and leaders figured that if you crammed a pair of each minority into a company or into a boardroom, you had accomplished the task of creating a diverse work environment. Nothing could be further from the truth!

This panel will explore:

  • How can partners and associates engage their firm in more creative D&I initiatives?
  • How can firms show their clients that they are sincerely implementing change and not just using a broad brush?
  • How is credit given at law firms and what has to change?
  • What responsibility do in-house counsel have in helping law firms to become more diverse?
  • What can corporations do to become more diverse?




10:30 AM
Mentorship Matters but Sponsorship Moves the Needle

As you advance in your career, pursuing growth opportunities requires confidence, creativity, and a strong network–including the right mentors. But who is vouching for you behind closed doors? The right sponsor can be instrumental in pushing you forward and seeing that you are considered for that next opportunity.

This panel will explore:

  • Differentiating sponsors from mentors and other influencers
  • Sponsorship and its impact on DEI
  • Identifying and cultivating effective sponsors
  • Paying it forward: How best to advocate others






11:15 AM
Networking Break
11:45 AM
Nurturing the Next Generation in Legal

This is a timely topic now that the workplace is as age-diverse as ever before. Older workers say they feel like they are being pushed out while younger workers are leaving in large numbers because they feel undervalued. If organizations are going to thrive, communication and comprehension are the keys to a more harmonious and productive workforce.

This panel will explore:

  • The challenges and opportunities of a multi-generational workplace
  • Reverse mentoring
  • Succession planning that works for all






12:30 PM
Keynote: Perspectives from the Top

In the face of the events of the past year and a half, many companies and firms are beginning to feel the necessity of fortifying their commitment to DEI initiatives. Additionally, there is mounting pressure on the General Counsel and Senior Partners to show up and take a stand on those initiatives by actively participating in changing the company’s culture and the way they do business.

This panel will explore one or more of the following topics:

A. The ROI on DEI

  • Organizational pitfalls when DEI isn’t a priority
  • Inclusion as a business strategy and opportunity
  • Success stories from collaboration with outside counsel

B. Follow the Yellow Brick Road: A Path to the GC Suite/Partnership---Legal Leadership

  • Advice and lessons learned from leading GCs/Sr. Partners
  • Why NOW is the time to make your next career move if you are a WOC
  • Words of wisdom from diverse leaders on navigating the path to success

C. Driving Inclusion Through ESG

  • What is ESG and why is everyone talking about it now?
  • What role does the legal team play in corporate ESG initiatives?
  • Where does DEI fit into the ESG framework?
  • Why is having a strong ESG initiative in place important for an organization’s broader diversity and inclusion efforts?




01:30 PM
Lunch & Networking
02:15 PM
Roundtables

Three rotating, 20-minute discussions hosted by a topic expert.

Roundtable 1: Topic details to come
Jennifer Watson, President & Firm Managing Shareholder, Wilbraham, Lawler & Buba, P.C.

Roundtable 2: Topic and speaker details to come
Williams & Connolly

Roundtable 3: Topic and speaker details to come





03:15 PM
Networking Break
03:30 PM
Cultivating Allies & Change Agents

Because creating and maintaining a diverse workforce is no longer a gesture of goodwill, but essential to financial growth, finding ways to foster diversity in the workplace is imperative. This requires collaboration across disciplinary and organizational boundaries to tackle discriminatory practices and promote a true culture of inclusion. In order to be successful, it means getting buy-in from the dominant group as well. This is where leadership is most needed: in helping today’s dominant group embrace tomorrow’s reality.

This panel will explore:

  • Identifying allies, advocates, and co-conspirators
  • Using privilege for the greater good—Becoming an ally
  • Developing an engagement strategy






04:15 PM
It's More than a Feeling: Busting Stereotypes and Unpacking Unconscious Bias

The chances are extremely high that during your lifetime you have felt the impact of unconscious bias. To complicate matters, as human beings, every one of us has biases that we may not be aware of. That doesn’t make the effect any less dismissive or dehumanizing to the target. Whether discrimination comes from overt prejudice or unconscious bias, underrepresented groups and women are not receiving equal opportunities or treatment when it comes to landing in-house counsel positions, earning promotions, or making partner in a law firm. In fact, the impact of unconscious bias can too easily be underestimated and even rationalized. How can we identify our own unconscious biases/microaggressions and those of others?

This panel will explore:

  • How to do a moral inventory
  • Recognizing and resolving the commission of microaggressions: Power of language, Institutional bias, Ignorance, and education
  • How to approach: Managers, Peers, Direct reports




05:00 PM
Closing Comments + Networking Cocktail Hour