Diversity Resource Guide

From Phyllis Miller Gillespie – Diversity Committee Chair:

I am grateful for the opportunity to serve as the 2017-18 Diversity Committee Chair for the Martin County Bar Association. I’ve practiced in this community for over 20 years and I have noticed slow growth in the number of women, minorities, LGBTQ, and those with disabilities participating in our Bar. Hence, there is room for continued inclusion and diversification in our legal community.

The Florida Bar recognizes the need for the dissemination of information and open discussion on the topic and have developed a committee to do just that. I am providing some useful information that is found on the Florida Bar’s webpage, information from the ABA and other resources. This compilation is a work in progress and I welcome additions – please feel free to forward your resource suggestions to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. I hope that you will take the time to peruse this information and consider the relevance of diversity and inclusion in your daily practice (links will be live on the MCBA website):

Source - The Florida Bar’s Website

Diversity in the Legal Profession - Mission: To increase diversity and inclusion in The Florida Bar so that the Bar will reflect the demographics of the state, to develop opportunities for community involvement, and to make leadership roles within the profession and The Florida Bar accessible to all attorneys, including those who are racially, ethnically and culturally diverse, women, members of the LGBTQ community and persons with disabilities.

Links on Diversity from the Florida Bar’s Committee on Diversity and Inclusion:

Diversity & Inclusion – Attracting the Best:

Get Involved in The Path to Unity:

Gender Equality on the Florida Bar’s Agenda:

Special Commission on Gender Bias Final Report:

Law360 reports that although women comprise 40% of law school graduates, they only hold about 34.8% of the positions at law firms www.law360.com/articles/946586 

For more information, contact Florida Bar Diversity and Inclusion Committee Chair, Brittany J. Maxey-Fisher at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Source - American Bar Association’s Website


Diversity Resources for Section, Divisions, Forums - of note, please see: See ABA Diversity & Inclusion CLE Policy. Exhibit 3.11 as Amended and Resubmitted June 10, 2016 at 4:30 p.m. Central by the Diversity and Inclusion 360 Commission: The ABA expects all CLE programs sponsored or co-sponsored by the ABA to meet the aspirations of Goal III by having the faculty include members of diverse groups as defined by Goal III (race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, and disability). This policy applies to individual CLE programs whose faculty consists of three or more panel participants, including the moderator. Individual programs with faculty of three or four panel participants, including the moderator, will require at least 1 diverse member; individual programs with faculty of five to eight panel participants, including the moderator, will require at least 2 diverse members; and individual programs with faculty of nine or more panel participants, including the moderator, will require at least 3 diverse members. The ABA will not sponsor, co-sponsor, or seek CLE accreditation for any program failing to comply with this policy unless an exception or appeal is granted. The ABA implementation date for the new Diversity & Inclusion CLE Policy shall be March 1, 2017. A subcommittee of SCOCLE will be created which will include representatives from SOC. If for some rare or extraordinary reason a panel does not comply and not be granted an exception for one time only on behalf of that panel the entity can opt to pay a fine of $2500 to the diversity center rather than lose CLE credit for that panel. This exception can only be granted one time. 

Model Diversity & Inclusion Plan (template):

Other Bar Associations

National Bar Association, Florida affiliate chapter --Virgil Hawkins Bar Association: www.vhfnba.org 
Florida Association of Women Lawyers: http://www.fawl.org
Palm Beach County Hispanic Bar Association: http://www.pbchispanicbar.com
Hispanic Bar pushes for inclusion in the legal profession: http://www.miamiherald.com/opinion/op-ed/article141860019.html
National Minority Bar Association: http://www.wsba.org/Legal-Community/Minority-Bar-Associations/National-Minority-Bar-Association-Directory