Findings from the Austin Law Firm Diversity Report Card recently revealed an increase in the number of minority attorneys employed in the city’s biggest law firms. Now in its fourth year, the annual report—a joint effort between the Hispanic Bar Association of Austin, the Austin Black Lawyers Association, the Austin Asian American Bar Association, the South Asian Bar Association of Austin, and the Austin LGBT Bar Association—surveyed Austin’s 30 largest firms on the percentage of minority attorneys and minority partners they employ.
In order to receive an A on the report card, a law firm must meet or exceed the percentage of minority attorneys that compromise all attorneys licensed to practice in Travis County—15 percent. Law firms below 7.5 percent received a failing grade.
This year marks the first time that the Diversity Report Card Committee has factored in data on openly lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender employees in firms. It also introduced a detailed breakdown of the results, identifying the number of reported partners, counsel, and associates from each minority group.
Nine law firms received an A grade for 2014:
Bracewell & Giuliani
The Fowler Law Firm
Gardere Wynne Sewell
Vinson & Elkins
Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati
“The grades of the firms reflect an understanding and appreciation of diversity in both the workplace and the practice of law,” said Rudolph Metayer, a DRC Committee co-chair representing the Austin Black Lawyer’s Association. “It is showing how far we have come and that we still have work to do.”
For more information and the complete results of the Law Firm Diversity Report Card, go to austinblacklawyers.org.