Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp LLP
Headquarters: Los Angeles, CA
Business: Legal Services

With an unwavering commitment to diversity and inclusion, MSK brings programming to its attorneys and staff on topics such as implicit bias, the value of diversity, and communication styles. The firm believes that more awareness is the only way diversity and inclusion will be embraced as a way of thinking, not just marketed as a strategic initiative. Breaking down mistrust, stereotyping, biases, and cultural misunderstanding is attained from an organizational commitment by firm leadership.

Despite trends toward a more diverse workplace, barriers continue to limit progress. One challenge/obstacle that firms face is interpersonal miscommunication and conflict. In order for MSK to foster a more diverse workplace, the firm endeavors to ensure that management understands customs and cultural predispositions. Communication is critical. Leadership must ensure that everyone has access to resources that can help them avoid misinterpretations and create an environment more conducive to open communication by properly identifying and working to eliminate barriers.

In 2018, MSK launched several initiatives, including a revamped associate evaluation criteria and review program, maternity/ parental leave policy, part-time program, mentoring program, lateral hiring, and student recruiting (1L Summer Associate Program, Law Fellows Program, Summer Hiring, and sponsored Diversity reception at school and off-site near LA office). The firm also named two diverse female partners, Melanie Figueroa and Emma Luevano, as Diversity & Inclusion Committee co-chairs.

In 2019, the firm will endeavor to foster a more diverse workplace and continue to support and expand diversity and inclusion efforts. Led by Diversity & Inclusion Committee co-chairs, Melanie Figueroa, Emma Luevano, and Greg Olaniran, MSK will pursue its D&I goals by doing the following:

  • Focusing on retention efforts through leadership training and associate-development training
  • Focusing on hiring diverse top talent at all levels by fostering a pipeline of diverse candidates
  • Creating and fostering leadership positions across the firm

The firm’s Diversity & Inclusion Committee co-chairs are involved in many different associations that support diversity and inclusion, including the National Bar Association, the Mexican American Bar Foundation, OneJustice, the Hispanic National Bar Association, the Puerto Rican Bar Association, and the Minority Corporate Counsel Association.