Yusuf Z. Zakir
Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer
Davis Wright Tremaine LLP
Headquarters: Seattle, Washington
CEO: Scott MacCormack
His Credentials: HBA, business management), University of Toronto; JD, Loyola Law School (Los Angeles)
His Philosophy: To foster a culture where all talented individuals—including those from traditionally underrepresented communities—can have, and can see, a path to success.
In 2021, Davis Wright Tremaine launched its Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) and built a team of seven full-time DEI professionals, including me. I am privileged to lead this team of DEI experts, as we embed DEI across our organization. In March 2021, we introduced our 2021–22 DEI strategic plan. With this plan, we seek to foster a culture where all talented individuals—including those from traditionally underrepresented communities in the legal profession—can have, and can see, a path to success.
We build this vision on four pillars: Community, Growth, Education, and Engagement. Our strategic plan had a number of key strategic priorities, and we have been able to make significant progress on all of them, including (i) developing a fully embedded DEI structure; (ii) launching our inaugural DEI@DWT Client Summit; and (iii) offering monthly education sessions for our organization, including by speakers like Nikole Hannah-Jones (The 1619 Project).
In 2022, we seek to continue the work outlined in our 2021–22 DEI Strategic Plan. This includes (i) refining our efforts to build community, including launching First Generation Professionals Affinity Group; (ii) elevating our practice group efforts ensure equity in access to opportunities; (iii) offering DEI training at critical pivot points in the progression process; and (iv) further deepening our partnerships with clients to build on our shared commitment to DEI.