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08:00 AM
REGISTRATION & CHECK IN
09:00 AM
OPENING COMMENTS
09:15 AM
A Country in Crisis: How the Pandemic Has Exacerbated Economic Disparities in America

We are in the midst of a pandemic and it will be a long recovery from COVID-19. Among the many issues is the reality that companies will continue to cut pay and lay more people off. Studies show that the choices they make will have a disparately negative impact on attorneys of color and women. This has far reaching consequences that go beyond the workplace. Access to good work is one thing, but the problem goes much deeper. Access to healthcare, and other vital resources, has long been an issue. As recent events in Minneapolis and around the globe have demonstrated, we’ve reached a tipping point. 

This panel will explore:

  • How this pandemic has contributed to uncovering the disparity between marginalized and privileged groups
  • How to make this an opportunity to have some difficult but necessary conversations
  • Why it is important to double down on diversity and inclusion efforts, emphasizing a commitment to those values
  • How leadership in both law firms and companies can create a sense of community and belonging and why it is especially important during times of crisis






10:00 AM
NETWORKING BREAK
10:15 AM
#MeToo: Moving Beyond the Hashtag and Enlisting Men to Become Ambassadors for Change

Rarely do we see inclusion strategies that stress the need to include, listen to, and work with the dominant group — the one that is seeing its preeminence questioned. However, that is where leadership is most needed: in helping today’s dominant group embrace tomorrow’s reality. While it goes without question that women and minorities in positions of power must help others to move the needle, a better approach may be to engage everyone in bringing about change. When it comes to women’s advancement, men matter. 

This panel will explore:

  • Identifying Male Allies
  • Developing an engagement strategy
  • How you can self-advocate in order to get buy-in from others
  • What law firms and corporations can do to help
  • Tips and success stories from the panelists










11:00 AM
NETWORKING BREAK
11:15 AM
Redefining Success in a Virtual World

Women often do not apply for a job or a promotion if they don’t check every box, whereas men regularly seek jobs for which they are only partially qualified. The challenge can be even more daunting when considering a dream job or career choice that is not part of the normal trajectory. While the virus has pushed us out of our comfort zones, it has also presented a unique opportunity to explore our options. Pursuing these options (whether it be a raise, a promotion or a nontraditional path) requires the confidence and courage to see your own potential in order to go after what is important to you.

This panel will explore:

  • Letting go of the past and finding new ways of adapting to the changes ahead
  • Getting clear with what you really want and making the current climate work for you
  • The ASK: Asking for what you want and knowing why you deserve
  • The role of sponsors, mentors and allies in getting us closer to our goals
  • How best to advocate for ourselves and others








12:00 PM
NETWORKING BREAK
12:15 PM
The Time for Change is Now: Recruiting, Promoting & Retaining Leaders of Color

Leaders of color are resolute in their determination to get ahead. Why then do so few make it to the top in Big Law or major corporations? The numbers are abysmal with 2.81 percent in equity partnership positions and 3.9 percent in the C-suite. Due to ongoing events since the spring of 2020, public outcry for change is at an all-time high. And while diversity and inclusion initiatives are becoming more commonplace in both law firms and corporate America, progress is slow.

This panel will explore:

  • Challenges that underrepresented leaders face in the legal profession
  • Why law firms and other employers should care about retaining and advancing people of color
  • Performative vs. Substantive change
  • Affinity groups and other resources
  • Success stories - Advice for young attorneys of color








01:00 PM
NETWORKING BREAK
01:15 PM
Recognizing & Combating Unconscious Bias

Whether discrimination comes from overt prejudice or unconscious bias, minorities 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 be insidious and too easily underestimated or rationalized. How can lawyers identify their own unconscious biases and overcome discrimination when it affects them directly?

This panel will explore:

  • The types of unconscious bias to look out for:
    • Power of language
    • Institutional bias
    • Ignorance and education
  • How to approach:
    • Managers
    • Peers
    • Direct reports
  • When an official approach is needed – reporting bias








02:00 PM
NETWORKING BREAK
02:15 PM
The Role of Sponsorship and Mentorship in Creating an Inclusive Culture

To create a rewarding legal career, one must seek out challenging and visible professional opportunities: getting on the right case, satisfying the important client, winning the big settlement. For women and minorities, however, finding these opportunities often isn’t enough; effective sponsors and influencers are needed to help seize them.

Behind closed doors, who is vouching for you and pushing your name forward for the opportunities you want? What can you do to strategically foster sponsors and influencers?

This panel will explore:

  • The importance of women and minorities in law
  • Differentiating sponsors from influencers
  • Redefining the “old boys network” in the legal profession
  • Identifying current and potential sponsors










03:00 PM
NETWORKING BREAK
03:15 PM
Caregiving & Career: Mastering the Balancing Act

Working remotely has created a new set of challenges, especially for those in a caregiver role—often women. Whether you are caring for children, elderly parents or just having a balanced work-life integration, COVID-19 has placed an even greater strain on those already trying to keep up with the demands of a successful career.

This panel will explore:

  • Best practices for working remotely
  • Why companies should support – not penalize – parents and caregivers now and in the future
  • Realistic tips for achieving balance
  • The silver lining: How the pandemic will change the way we work and create more opportunities for flexibility








04:00 PM
NETWORKING RECEPTION & RAFFLE