SEATTLE, Wash. (December 13, 2016) - Perkins Coie LLP is pleased to announce that it has been recognized by Microsoft Corporation as one of the top three achieving law firms in Microsoft’s FY16 Law Firm Diversity Program (LFDP). Launched in 2008, Microsoft’s LFDP focuses on increasing diversity among the partner and leadership ranks of the law firms in its premier provider network. After assessing diversity initiatives at its law firms, Microsoft provides financial incentives to firms that show improvement in these areas. Each of the three winning law firms (Perkins Coie, K&L Gates, LLP and Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe, LP) have strong commitments to diversity and a range of initiatives in place. Additionally, Microsoft will place full-page advertisements in Inside Counsel and Corporate Counsel to publicly recognize the top achieving firms.
At Perkins Coie, women attorneys teamed up with Microsoft women attorneys on a new program to inform and inspire women law students about their future in the legal field. The program included an event in Chicago called “Women in Law: Being Successful and Making an Impact,” and another event in Washington, D.C. titled “Women in Law: Navigating the Politics of Success.” As part of these unique events for Perkins Coie and Microsoft, seasoned women lawyers from both organizations offered law students in both cities a glimpse into what lies ahead after law school as well as perspective on various legal career options and tips on how to navigate the changing legal market—whether at a law firm, in-house law department, or in business or government.
Microsoft’s support for diverse staffing allows diverse attorneys to develop successful careers. For example, “The new litigation focus on having the first or second chair be diverse helps develop and empower the next generation of first chair lawyers and relationship managers,” said Susan Foster, partner at Perkins Coie. “It’s giving significant responsibility to a new group of junior partners who might not have the opportunity otherwise, and is highlighting their capabilities and skills to Microsoft for future work.”
Perkins Coie has long been committed to excellence in Diversity. This year alone, the firm was named among the 100 Best Workplaces for Women by FORTUNE magazine; achieved a top rating of 100 percent in the Corporate Equality Index by the Human Rights Foundation; and named one of the Best Law Firms for Women by Working Mother/Flextime Lawyers. Most recently, Perkins Coie became one of the first law firms to publicly support the American Bar Association’s (ABA) Resolution 113, which aims to promote diversity in the legal profession. And, earlier this year, Perkins Coie launched an innovative program called Le[a]dBetter to demonstrate its commitment to business leadership equality. The program, named for the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, offers a 15 percent discount on legal services for startup companies that have at least one woman in a senior executive position.
“At Perkins Coie, we’re very proud of the work we’ve done to ensure a supportive workplace that allows everyone to succeed. We owe much of our progress to our clients, like Microsoft, who challenge us to continually do more to move the needle,” said Theresa Cropper, Perkins Coie’s Chief Diversity Officer. “We’re honored by their recognition and inspired to do more.”
About Perkins Coie: Founded in 1912, Perkins Coie LLP has more than 1,000 lawyers in 19 offices across the United States and Asia. The firm provides a full array of corporate, commercial litigation and intellectual property legal services to a broad range of clients, from FORTUNE 50 corporations to emerging growth startups, as well as public and not-for-profit organizations.
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