Archive for the ‘Professionals of Color’ Category.

Prominent Advocate for Flex Time Lawyers Blogs About Diversity and Inclusion Action Plan

Cynthia Calvert

Cynthia Calvert, co-founder of the Project for Attorney Retention at the University of California Hastings College of the Law and a prolific author and speaker on the retention and advancement of women attorneys, alternative work arrangements, and family responsibilities discrimination, has discussed the Grand Rapids Managing Partners Diversity Collaborative Action Plan for diversity and inclusion in her blog.  Ms. Calvert played an important part in the steps that led up to the forming of the Collaborative.  In March 2010, she was a keynote speaker, along with Robert Grey of the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity, at the Grand Rapids Bar Association Roundtable on the Retention of Women and Minority Lawyers

Writing in her blog, Ms. Calvert predicted success for the plan based on the commitment and dedication to making a difference she saw at the Roundtable.  She described the Action Plan as employing strategies with a proven record of success and praised the Plan for including provisions that hold the firms accountable for implementing it. See, “Taking Action toward Diversity and Inclusion in Grand Rapids.”

In a subsequent blog, Ms. Calvert suggested 5 steps the members of the Collaborative can take to get their members actively participating the diversity and inclusion initiatives.  You can read that article by clicking here.

 Ms. Calvert is the author of a number of books and articles on the retention and advancement of women.  Her most recent book, written with Joan C. Williams, is “Flex Success: The Lawyer’s Guide to Balanced Hours” (2011)

Links to News Coverage of the Managing Partner Diversity Collaborative Action Plan

A number of media sources have shown an interest in the Action Plan signed by the Grand Rapids Managing Partner Diversity Collaborative.  We’ll gather links to the coverage as stories appear and link them here: 


Warner Attends BLSA’s Midwest Regional Convention

This past weekend, Marcus Jones and Rodney Martin attended the annual convention of the Midwest Region of the Black Law Students Association, or “BLSA.”  The convention, which was held in Columbus, Ohio, is packed with energy.  Walking around, you see students dressed in business attire,  huddled in groups, talking earnestly. Get closer and you learn that they are team members in BLSA’s mock trial or moot court competition.  The competition is intense as student teams vie for the chance to represent their school and the Midwest Region at the national convention in Washington, D.C. in March.  Those who aren’t competing participate in workshops on a wide range of topics, including public interest law, intellectual property, judicial clerkships, non-traditional legal careers, and choosing a practice area.  In the evening, students gather to network at receptions at Columbus’s Center of Science and Industry and the Moritz School of Law at Ohio State University, host to this year’s convention.

Observing all the activity, it is easy to forget that the enormous effort of planning all of the activities falls on the full-time student leaders of BLSA.  BLSA is the largest student run organization in the United States. Founded in 1968, BLSA has chapters on over 200 law school campuses. Its mission is to articulate and promote the needs and goals of black law students and effectuate change in the legal community.

Warner Norcross & Judd is proud to have been a sponsor and a participant in the 2012 Midwest Regional Convention and congratulates the leadership of the Midwest Region for a job well done.  See you next year!

Warner Issues 6th Diversity and Inclusion Annual Report


Warner Norcross & Judd has issued its 6th Diversity and Inclusion Annual Report.  The Annual Report is a key way that we communicate our commitment to, and progress toward, becoming a more inclusive organization.  It is also a way of keeping ourselves accountable for following up on our commitments.  The 2011 Diversity and Inclusion Annual Report includes a letter from our Managing Partner, Douglas Wagner.  It also provides brief articles highlighting some of our diverse professionals and the leadership roles they play in our firm and in the community.  Finally, as we do every year, we have included a demographic profile of the firm.  To read a copy of the 2011 report, click here

Copies of the firm’s Annual Reports for 2006 through 2010 may be found on the firm’s website by clicking here.

BL²END’s 5 Year Celebration Video

Here is the video that was produced for BL²END’s Five Year Celebration. It does a great job telling the history of the organization and showing the vision and passion that has made BL²END the tremendous organization that it is today. WARNING: This video may take a couple of minutes to load. But its worth the wait.

BL2END 5 Year Anniversary Video from Chuck Peterson on Vimeo.

Congratulations to BL²END on its Five Year Anniversary

The planning committee for BL²END's Five Year Celebration

Nearly 600 people joined together at DeVos Place in Grand Rapids to celebrate the five year anniversary of BL²END.  BL²END plays an important role as an outlet for young professionals of color to learn, network, grow and become engaged in the Grand Rapids community.  It is amazing what they have accomplished in 5 short years.  Five years ago, BL²END set out to make Grand Rapids a great place for young professionals of color to begin their career and they have made great strides in doing just that. Our community truly owes BL²END a debt of gratitude.

Warner Norcross & Judd was pleased to be the Leadership Partner for BL²END’s Five Year Celebration.  We congratulate BL²END on their great accomplishments to date and wish them the best of success in the future.

Warner also extends its congratulations to the three awards recipients last evening:

Thank you for your commitment, leadership and passion.