Diversity, equity, and inclusion (DE&I) are important parts of the Firm’s core values and culture. The recruiting, retention, and inclusion of legal professionals from a variety of diverse backgrounds is a key initiative of the Firm’s strategic plan.
Babst Calland maintains a DE&I Committee which includes attorneys from different practice groups and regional offices. Brianne K. Kurdock, shareholder in the Washington, D.C. office, is the Chair of the DE&I Committee. The Committee has dedicated a significant amount of time on recruiting and exploring ways to find and attract diverse attorneys to the Firm. As an initiative of the DE&I Committee, the external recruiting agencies the Firm partners with have been requested to explore additional sources for candidates, expand their networks for recruiting, and increase the Historically Black Colleges and Universities they recruit from.
As part of the Firm’s commitment to DE&I, Babst Calland is an active member of the Pittsburgh Legal Diversity and Inclusion Coalition (PLDIC). The PLDIC was established to build a group of law firms, corporate law departments, and affiliated organizations that work collaboratively to increase diversity and foster inclusion in the region’s legal community. Managing Shareholder Donald C. Bluedorn II is the former Chair of the PLDIC Coalition, and Babst Calland continues to maintain a strong connection to the Coalition. Sarina Miller, the Firm’s HR Director, is an active member of the PLDIC. Sarina serves on the Coalition’s Retention Committee and participates in a PLDIC Roundtable Collaboration program with other law firms in Pittsburgh to collaborate DEI efforts, share ideas, and develop DEI strategies. Through our involvement in the PLDIC and other diversity and inclusion initiatives, Babst Calland actively engages in various professional and community outreach and networking opportunities in each of our regional offices and throughout the country.
Babst Calland earned its certification from the Allegheny County Bar Association as part of the inaugural cohort of the ALLY Initiative (Attorneys, Learning as allies, Living as allies, and Yielding results). The ACBA Ally initiative was created “to engage attorneys, their law firms, corporate legal departments, courts and other legal organizations to commit to increase inclusivity, create equitable workplaces, empower historically marginalized and underrepresented members of the bar and reflect the community we serve, through active participation in various key programs and projects targeted to achieve these objectives.” Babst Calland successfully completed 10 goals across four different categories to earn this certification and to further promote gender equity and diversity at the Firm and in the community.
The Firm has also participated in the Allegheny County Bar Association Minority Summer Internship Program for years. In collaboration with this program, each year a first-year law student is hired for the summer to provide a “real-life” law firm experience.
Babst Calland understands that DE&I efforts are ongoing, and we remain committed to hiring, retaining, and promoting attorneys and staff from diverse backgrounds.
News and Events
GlobalPittsburgh Director Nadya Kessler and Babst Calland Attorney Susanna Bagdasarova discuss the benefits of ‘citizen diplomacy’ and opportunities for local and international business leaders.
To view the article, click here.
To view the full video and article, click here.
Babst Calland joins the Appalachian Pipeliners Association for its 2023 Power Appalachia Symposium on Friday, October 20, 2023. During this symposium, leaders from top industry players will converge to discuss DEI, Regulations, Endangered Species, PHMSA, Renewable Energy and more. Pipeline Attorney Brianne Kurdock will present “The Changing World of PHMSA Regulations for Gathering and Transmission Lines.” For more information, click here.
Babst Calland joins Case Western Reserve University School of Law for The Academy for Inclusive Leadership Development II, October 19-21, 2023. This year’s topics include structural bias (race, gender, sexual and gender identity, ability, ethnicity), the science of bias, cultural intelligence, triggers and micro-aggressions, the economics of law practice, performing organizational assessments, building diverse work teams and inclusive practices in organizations, laws impacting DEIB, transformational leadership, and organizational management. …
Babst Calland hosted a training by Executive Director Ena Lebel of the Pittsburgh Legal Diversity & Inclusion Coalition (PLDIC). She presented on implicit bias theory and research and why it matters in the legal profession. Babst Calland employees participated in the training with real life scenarios including tools for how to recognize and interrupt such biases personally and professionally in the workplace.
The Pittsburgh Legal Diversity & Inclusion Coalition (PLDIC) is partnering with the Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network (PLAN) to host an ethics CLE called, “Objection! An Interactive Educational Experience on Diversity and Bias Issues in the Legal Profession.”
The 90-minute CLE uses animated vignettes, polls, and group discussion to “explore realistic workplace situations and contemplate issues, viewpoints, and ethical issues.” The CLE will dive into and explore issues of race and gender within the legal profession. …
Babst Calland earned certification from the Allegheny County Bar Association as part of the inaugural cohort of the ALLY Initiative.
ALLY stands for Attorneys, Learning as allies, Living as allies, and Yielding results. The ACBA Ally initiative was created “to engage attorneys, their law firms, corporate legal departments, courts and other legal organizations to commit to increase inclusivity, create equitable workplaces, empower historically marginalized and underrepresented members of the bar and reflect the community we serve, through active participation in various key programs and projects targeted to achieve these objectives.” Click here, to read more.
Pittsburgh Legal Diversity & Inclusion Coalition
On May 11 from 12-1:30 p.m., the PLDIC will offer a CLE opportunity, “Deep Retention: Inclusion vs. Tokenism,” presented by Asta Kill, (she/hers), Esq., of the Hugh Lane Wellness Foundation and hosted by Babst Calland.
This course will explore and suggest how to go beyond mere number reporting in your organization or firm’s diversity efforts to foster LGBTQ+ inclusion. …
Babst Calland is pleased to announce the Firm’s participation in the Allegheny County Bar Association’s ALLY Initiative Cohort. ALLY stands for “Attorneys, Learning as allies, Living as allies, and Yielding results.” The Initiative is designed to engage attorneys and their law firms, corporate legal departments, courts and other organizations to commit to increasing inclusivity, creating equitable workplaces and empowering historically marginalized and underrepresented community members. …
Babst Calland joins the University of Charleston for its Women and the Law Conference titled “When There are Nine” on Monday, October 11, 2021. This conference is an informational opportunity for those considering a career in law and will address issues of equity, inclusion, advancement, and leadership. State Supreme Court justices, legal advocates, practicing attorneys, and others will offer a unique perspective on women and the law. Special guests will include a wide range of professionals in the field of law, including a US District Court judge, attorneys from several area firms, legal advocates from Mountain State Justice and Legal Aid, and those who have taken their law degree in unexpected directions. …
Attorney Krista Staley will be a panelist for “Ethical Considerations in the Diversity and Inclusion Space at the Institute for Energy Law and the Energy & Mineral Law Foundation (EMLF) at the 12th Law of Shale Plays Conference, September 8-10, 2020.
Focused on legal issues related to the shale plays in the United States, this conference brings together clients, attorneys, professional landmen, and other professionals to learn and discuss important cases, concepts, and trends. …
Babst Calland joins 2020 Women on Boards for their National Conversation on Board Diversity on Thursday, November 15, 2018. 2020 Women on Boards is a national campaign to increase the percentage of women on U.S. company boards to 20 percent or greater by the year 2020. The National Conversation on Board Diversity is hosted annually in more than 25 different cities around the country and focuses on bringing together thousands of C-Suite and Senior Level Executives to raise awareness and provide resources and tools to move this mission forward.