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Diverse Organizations Worth Watching

Their Diversity Is in their DNA …

The organizations featured in the following pages live their commitment to diversity, inclusion, and equity every day … and in everything they do. Diversity, inclusion, and equity are preordained when it comes to recruitment and hiring, promotion and advancement—in fact, every aspect of career advancement and professional growth. Profiles in Diversity Journal is proud to honor these diversity high achievers and share their stories, their strategies, and their successes with you, our readers.

We invite you to peruse the following profiles and get to know these admirable organizations. We think you’ll like them as much as we do. We’re sure you will also encounter pearls of wisdom, be moved by deep insights, discover best practices, and take delight in creative ideas that your company, school, or nonprofit organization may be able to benefit from and apply in your own workplace.

2022 Diverse Organizations Leadership Award Winners

Profiles in Diversity Journal 2022 Diverse Organizations Leadership International Award
Freddie Mac We make home possible

Organization Name: Freddie Mac
Headquarters Location: Mclean, Virginia
Organization Website:
Industry: Consulting–Financial Services
Number of Employees: 6,892
CEO: Michael DeVito
Diversity Leader: Wendell Chambliss
Diversity Leader Title: Senior Vice President and Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer

1. Number of minority, women, or members of other underrepresented groups that are currently C-level executive at Freddie Mac: Three or our 12 leaders are racial or ethnic minorities.

  1. Two of the three were added to the C-Suite in the past 3 years.
  2. Three of the 12 leaders are women and were added to the C-Suite in the past three years.

2. Number of minority, women, or members of other underrepresented groups that currently serve on the Freddie Mac board of directors: Four of 12 board members are racial or ethnic minorities.

  1. Three individuals from these groups were added to the board of directors in the past three years (2019 – 2021)
  2. Two board members that are racial or ethnic minorities
  3. One board member that is a woman

3. The diversity make-up of Freddie Mac:

Freddie Mac is a majority-minority company. At yearend 2021, 56 percent of the workforce identified as a racial or ethnic minority. Women make up nearly half of the organization. At year-end 2021, 45 percent of the workforce identified as a woman.

4. Does Freddie Mac have a Chief Diversity Officer who reports directly to the CEO?

Freddie Mac has had a Chief Diversity Officer role for more than 10 years. In April 2022, Wendell Chambliss was named the Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer reporting directly to the CEO responsible for a team of individuals focused on workforce diversity, supplier diversity, diversity in financial transactions and community engagement.

5. Do you have a robust pipeline-to-leadership program in place for women and members of minority and other underrepresented groups?

Freddie Mac attracts and sustains a pipeline of diverse candidates by partnering with diverse organizations, Hispanic Serving Institutions and Historically Black Colleges and Universities that create career opportunities for underrepresented populations, including Thurgood Marshall College Fund, HomeFree USA’s Center for Financial Advancement (HBCU Students), Hispanic Heritage Foundation, Hispanic Scholarship Fund, PowerToFly (Women in Tech), FairyGodBoss (Women), and Next for Autism.

6. Is Freddie Mac pursuing, or have you achieved, pay parity for women, minorities, and other underrepresented groups?

Freddie Mac implements competitive compensation programs and practices to help ensure employees are paid similarly for similar work without respect to gender, race or ethnicity.

7. Freddie Mac’s Mission: We serve America’s homebuyers, homeowners, and renters by equitably providing liquidity, stability, and affordability to the housing market.

  1. The mission statement is chartered by Congress and published prominently on

8. What is your Diversity and Inclusion statement?

At Freddie Mac, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) is more than a business imperative. It’s a mindset. As leaders in DEI, they are committed to promoting equity, igniting innovation through diverse perspectives, and instilling a culture where people feel comfortable to be their authentic selves in the workplace. Most importantly, they are committed to encouraging equitable and sustainable homeownership and rental opportunities for traditionally underserved Black and Latino communities.

  1. The DEI statement is shared with their employees. The statement is also shared with jobseekers and to the public.
  2. The DEI statement is part of Board-approved DEI strategic plan which informs their hiring practices and interactions with employees, customers, and the community.

9. What programs, policies, or initiatives does Freddie Mac currently have in place to ensure fairness and inclusion in the recruitment and hiring process?

  • Unconscious bias training for HR team and hiring managers
  • Cultural competence training for HR team and hiring managers
  • Diverse hiring team
  • Inclusive job descriptions
  • Sourcing from nontraditional talent pools and diverse groups

10. What is Freddie Mac’s Culture Statement?

Grow talent for today and tomorrow.

  1. It is shared with jobseekers, employees, and the public via and their intranet.
  2. The culture statement guides the HR strategy of: Attract, Retain and Grow Talent for Today and Tomorrow. Freddie Mac’s focus is to ensure every potential employee understands the culture and what drives their key successes. A video was created to capture those key authentic moments:

11. Current ERGs supported by Freddie Mac: Ten business resource groups (BRGs): Abilities, ARISE, Green, HOLA, InspirASIAN, Military Appreciation, Pride, Rising Leaders, and WIN.

BRGs are voluntary, employee-led organizations that foster a diverse, inclusive workplace aligned with Freddie Mac’s mission, values, competencies, business goals and Board-approved DEI strategic plan.

12. Does Freddie Mac have a supplier diversity program in place?

As Freddie Mac’s DEI efforts continue to evolve, they’re committed to ensuring that supplier diversity grows. They have supported diversity in contracting for more than 25 years – awarding millions of dollars in contracts to diverse suppliers that provide the highest-quality products and services at the most competitive prices. They develop qualified diverse suppliers.

  • Through the Supplier Academy, they help diverse suppliers learn how to strengthen their business to be more competitive for opportunities with Freddie Mac and other companies.
  • Freddie Mac offers them expert advice on marketing their businesses and introduces them to decision-makers, including the Enterprise Supply Chain (ESC) category managers – the experts who guide the competitive contracting process. *Since the program’s creation in 2016, more than 50 participants have completed the program, and new spending with their small businesses totals more than $55 million.

13. Honors/recognition for Freddie Mac’s diversity efforts awarded during the past three years:

Freddie Mac has a long-standing commitment to diversity and inclusion. They are very appreciative of the recognition they have received for their community work, which includes support of individuals and companies that excel and inspire service.

They have earned external recognition for our efforts.

  • 100% score on Human Rights Campaign Corporate Equality Index 2022 as a Best Place to Work for LGBTQ equality. Freddie Mac has received this score since 2010.
  • Many of Freddie Mac’s leaders have been recognized for their individual contributions to DEI in their discipline and the housing industry by Profiles in Diversity Journal and HousingWire

14. Freddie Mac includes DEI as part of its Annual Report and Sustainability Disclosure.

New American Funding

Organization Name: New American Funding
Headquarters Location: Tustin, CA
Organization Website:
Industry: Financial Services
Number of Employees: 3,900+
CEO: Rick Arvielo
Diversity Leader: Patty Arvielo
Diversity Leader Title: Co-Founder and President

1. Number of minority, women, or members of other underrepresented groups that are currently C-level executive at New American:

New American Funding is female and minority- owned. President and Co-Founder Patty Arvielo is a first-generation Hispanic-American with more than 40 years of experience in the mortgage industry. Additionally, New American Funding has a female Chief Operating Officer – Christy Bunce.

2. The diversity make-up of New American:

American Indian or Alaska Native 0.28%

Asian 8.70%

Black or African American 9.18%

Hispanic or Latino 21.58%

Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander 0.58%

Two or more races 3.24%

3. Does New American have a Chief Diversity Officer who reports directly to the CEO?

While New American Funding does not have a person designated in the role of “Chief Diversity Officer,” Senior Vice President, People and Culture, Renae Souza functions in a similar role. Souza oversees the team that manages recruiting, onboarding, employee relations, compensation, benefits, and culture/engagement. The People and Culture team, guided by Souza is also responsible for overseeing the company’s award-winning culture, NAF360. NAF360 is designed to ensure employees feel balanced and valued in their work life and are treated with 360 degrees of respect. Additionally, the company’s diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts are truly led by Co-Founder and President Patty Arvielo, as DEI efforts have been a focus of her career for more than four decades.

4. Do you have a robust pipeline-to-leadership program in place for women and members of minority and other underrepresented groups?

New American’s NAF 360 Mentorship Program is open to all employees within the organization. The 360 Mentorship Program is a developmental partnership through which the mentor and mentee share perspectives as they foster personal and professional growth and serves as an opportunity for the mentor to share their knowledge and aid in the mentee’s professional development. While not specifically tracked, the program has seen participants earn promotions and make career moves.

They also offer a career-development program, called “If You Want to Grow, We Want to Know,” where employees can openly share their goals and ideas with leaders. The campaign was started by President Patty Arvielo to encourage employees to grow and advance within the company. Whether they wanted to expand into a new area or have aspirations of advancing in their careers, senior leaders want to hear from them.

New American created a submission process where employees can submit their information, current position, the position they would like to grow to, and provide more information about themselves. Both Patty Arvielo and Chief Operating Officer Christy Bunce review each submission together and contact the employee’s manager to start the process of getting the employee moved up or on the right track.

Patty Arvielo also created a quarterly mentorship program called “Thrive and Lead,” which launched in October 2017. The program includes New American Funding employees and external mortgage professionals who are mentored for three months.

5. Is New American pursuing, or have you achieved, pay parity for women, minorities, and other underrepresented groups?

At this time, New American Funding has not put any specific plan into place. However, the company is committed to fair pay for all team members.

6. Are New American’s values clearly stated? All new hires are briefed on New American’s values as part of their orientation and the values are posted on the website and internal employee portal.

New American Funding understands the challenges of joining a new company, whether it be in-person or remote. To help them get started, all new hires attend an orientation session hosted by leaders from the New American Funding People and Culture (PAC) team. The three-hour orientations are held every Monday, and employees can attend from anywhere virtually. The orientation focuses on teaching new team members about the company’s mission, ethics, and policies, giving them the tools and knowledge they need to succeed at their new job.

The orientation sessions are informal and friendly, so that employees can absorb the information in a relaxed environment. This also encourages employees to ask any questions they have regarding these policies. All company policies and ethics guidelines are housed in an employee portal that employees can access and view at their convenience.

The PAC team leads the orientation with a focus on sharing the NAF360 culture at New American Funding. At the orientation, new employees watch videos of NAF360 in action and get to hear from current team members about their NAF360 experiences at New American Funding.

7. What is your Diversity and Inclusion statement?

Diversity and Inclusion is intertwined with our Vision and Mission statements.

Vision statement: New American Funding will transform the mortgage industry by providing world class service to our clients while maintaining our commitment to our NAF 360 culture. We will remain focused on our commitment to the underserved. Our innovative technology and sales platforms will allow the world to reimagine the possibilities of home ownership while simplifying the process from initial qualification to final payment.

Mission statement: New American Funding enables clients of all backgrounds to accomplish the American dream of homeownership by offering a diverse product suite, competitive pricing, and our promise to provide a timely and efficient closing. Our dedication to client service during the transaction extends after the closing while we service their mortgage. This passion for client service is displayed in every step of the homeownership experience with a focus on fulfilling our client’s needs in a manner that enhances their standard of living.

  1. How is it shared with jobseekers, employees, and the public? It is communicated to employees via internal communications, posted on NAF intranet, and stated here:
  2. How does it inform your hiring practices and interactions with employees, customers, and the community? Our mission statement contains our guiding principles that are forefront in all interactions, hiring and through the lifecycle of employment. These principles drive company direction, commitment, long-term strategy, and annual goals.

8. What programs, policies, or initiatives does New American currently have in place to ensure fairness and inclusion in the recruitment and hiring process?

  • Cultural competence training for HR team and hiring managers
  • Diverse hiring team
  • Sourcing from nontraditional talent pools and diverse groups

9. What is New American’s Culture Statement?

New American’s Culture Statement is part of NAF360 – their overall company philosophy.

“We are driven, motivated, push for positive movement and most importantly we do it together. Our melting pot allows for individual growth through support, transparency, collaboration, and innovation. We are a community fighting for ALL communities to achieve the dream of homeownership.”

This is shared will all team members on our internal company web.

Company leadership truly cares about investing in their employees and helping them succeed both personally and professionally. That spirit is embodied in the company’s culture initiative, called NAF360.

The initiative works to support the company’s goal of having happy employees who enjoy coming to work every day. NAF360 was designed to ensure employees feel balanced and valued in their work life and know they are being treated with 360 degrees of respect.

This is more than just a motto – it’s a belief and way of life that employees take to heart. Employees take away a real sense that they’re part of a community, not just a company.

While treating customers this way seems like an easy thing to do, treating fellow team members the same way is also an important focus at New American Funding. The company requires its team to treat all vendors with dignity and respect. The company takes this point so seriously that it has parted from top producers who weren’t willing to take this expectation seriously.

Since New American Funding is focused on cultivating a community environment, the company’s leadership has chosen to collaborate in partnership with the company’s various departments to create a sustainable company culture. This culture is one that regularly sources new ideas for process improvements and new projects from vendors, customers, and especially employees at all levels within the organization.

10. Current ERGs supported by New American:

The New American Funding Diversity and Inclusion initiative has been in place for nearly eight years. However, this year, the company codified its internal diversity initiative with its external commitment to serving the underserved through its community lending programs into a new initiative, called “Included.” Included encompasses the company’s internal and external efforts to increase diversity, equity, and inclusion in all forms.

Included represents the New American Funding’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion and unifies the company’s community lending programs and its internal Diversity and Inclusion initiative with the shared goal of creating, cultivating, and sustaining equity for all.

Included has specific goals that guide its efforts both internally and externally. Those goals are:

  1. Cast a wider net in recruiting to increase our goal of mirroring all communities
  2. Innovate specialized loan products and programs to contribute to increase homeownership rates for the underserved
  3. Offer resources and tools to help grow financial literacy in all communities
  4. Develop and provide learning and resource channels for our internal team’s professional development
  5. Identify and create Employee Resource Groups that consider the needs of all communities

New American Funding’s Included initiative involves the company’s Latino Focus and New American Dream initiatives, efforts designed to boost homeownership and mortgage industry career awareness among Hispanic and Black communities, respectively. The initiative also includes the company’s Military Heroes Focus, which works to increase homeownership for military servicemembers, veterans, and their families and to bring more veterans into the company’s workforce.

11. Honors/recognition for New American’s diversity efforts awarded during the past three years:

New American Funding has recently received numerous diversity awards, including:


Profiles in Diversity Journal: Latino Leaders Worth Watching | Patty Arvielo

Profiles in Diversity Journal: Diversity Leader | Patty Arvielo

Profiles in Diversity Journal: Asian Leaders Worth Watching | Karen Chiu

Stevies – The American Business Awards: Minority-Owned Business of the Year | New American Funding

FORTUNE/Great Places to Work: Best Workplaces for Women | New American Funding

Top Workplaces: Culture Excellence Awards – Compensations & Benefits, Innovation, Leadership, Purpose & Values, Work-life Flexibility | New American Funding

Association of Latino Professionals of America | Entrepreneurial Icon and Most Powerful Latinas

Profiles in Diversity Journal: Women Worth Watching® in Leadership Award | Patty Arvielo

Latina Style 50: Corporate Executive of the Year | Patty Arvielo

Clinton Foundation | Clinton Global Initiative 2022 Meeting | Featured Speaker | Patty Arvielo


FORTUNE/Great Places to Work: Best Workplaces for Women | New American Funding

Profiles in Diversity Journal: Diversity Leader | Patty Arvielo

Profiles in Diversity Journal: Latino Leaders Worth Watching | Patty Arvielo

National Association of Women in Real Estate Businesses: Diversity and Inclusion Leader | Patty Arvielo

Stevies – Women in Business: Social Change Maker of the Year | Patty Arvielo

Profiles in Diversity Journal: Innovations in Diversity Awards | New American Dream

Mortgage Women Magazine: Top Employers for Women | New American Funding

Profiles in Diversity Journal: Asian Leaders | Karen Chiu

Association of Latino Professionals For America: Most Powerful Latinas | Patty Arvielo

Profiles in Diversity Journal: Black Leaders Worth Watching | Charles Lowery

Profiles in Diversity Journal: Black Leaders Worth Watching | John Drumgoole Jr

Profiles in Diversity Journal: Black Leaders Worth Watching | Kim Arrington

Profiles in Diversity Journal: Black Leaders Worth Watching | Michael Moseby

Profiles in Diversity Journal: Black Leaders Worth Watching | Nisaa El-Hasan


FORTUNE/Great Places to Work: Best Workplaces for Women | New American Funding

Profiles in Diversity Journal: Women Worth Watching | Patty Arvielo

Latina Style 50: Corporate Executive of the Year | Patty Arvielo

Profiles in Diversity Journal 2022 Diverse Lawyers Making a Difference International Award

Profiles in Diversity Journal is proud to recognize prominent lawyers making a difference in diversity, inclusion, and equity within their law firms, and for their clients and communities with our first ever Diverse Lawyers Making a Difference Awards.

The 5 profiles that appear in this issue recognize and celebrate the achievements of our first group of Diverse Lawyers. Each award recipient has also provided us with the answers to some questions and an essay that will give you, our readers, the chance to get to know these trailblazing individuals a little better.

Welcome to PDJ’s first annual Diverse Lawyers Making a Difference Awards.

2022 Diverse Lawyers Making a Difference Award Winners

Profiles in Diversity Journal 2022 Diverse Lawyers Making a Difference International Award Winner company logos
The 2022 Innovations in Diversity Awards

Profiles in Diversity Journal’s
Innovations in Diversity Award Recipients for 2022
(in alphabetical order)

Innovation. It’s what happens when aspiration and inspiration meet commitment and hard work, and turn powerful ideas into exciting realities. Innovations in diversity and inclusion show us possibilities that can transform workplace, cultural, and social landscapes across the globe. Innovative thinking invites us, as individuals and organizations, to embrace a new and better future.

Profiles in Diversity Journal is proud to share this year’s ambitious—and sometimes revolutionary—innovations in diversity from some of the world’s most successful and respected companies, including leaders in law, real estate, cosmetics, and retail. They are truly taking diversity and inclusion to a new level.

Please explore and enjoy the creative ideas featured on the following pages. One of these exciting innovations in diversity may be your organization’s best next step.

2022 Innovations in Diversity Award Winners

  • Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld, LLP – Akin Gump/Robert S. Strauss Diversity & Inclusion Scholarship Program – Year Introduced: 2013
  • Ally Financial – Ally’s Moguls in the Making: Building a New Generation of Entrepreneurs – Year Introduced: 2019
  • Dechert LLP – Dechert and Aspiring Solicitors – Improving access to the law – Year Introduced: 2017
  • Enact Mortgage Insurance – Enact Mortgage Industry Development Program – Year Introduced: 2021
  • Freddie Mac – Freddie Mac Inclusive Content Guide – Year Introduced: 2021
  • Gibbons P.C. – Gibbons Diversity Initiative (GDI) and the Gibbons Cares pro bono program – Year Introduced: 2020-2022
  • New York Life – DE&I Center for Awareness & Advocacy – Year Introduced: 2021
  • Norton Rose Fulbright Year Introduced: 2021
  • United Rentals – Month of Impact – Year Introduced: 2022
Profiles in Diversity Journal 2022 Innovations in Diversity International Award
Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP

Company: Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP
Innovation Title: Akin Gump/Robert S. Strauss Diversity & Inclusion Scholarship Program
Company Website:
Year Introduced: 2013

Executive Summary

Launched in 2013, Akin Gump’s Robert S. Strauss Diversity & Inclusion Scholarship (SDIS) program is one of the firm’s most innovative recruiting initiatives. The program is offered in our five largest U.S. offices: Houston, Dallas, Los Angeles, New York and Washington, D.C. It is unique in that it spans two summers, with the scholars spending six weeks of the first summer with the firm and four weeks at a firm client. The second summer, the scholars participate in the firm’s general 2L summer associate program.

Named for firm founder Robert Strauss, the SDIS program continues his vision and pursuit of racial, ethnic, gender, economic and cultural diversity. Scholars from diverse backgrounds are given the opportunity to gain direct experience working at a global law firm as well as an in-house legal department at a client – resulting in a 360-degree perspective of the practice of law. Splitting the scholars’ first summer in this manner gives them a unique opportunity to develop client relationships at the very start of their legal careers and to build upon those relationships when they return to the firm as a practicing attorney.

In addition to the salary they earn at the firm during their two summers, the scholars receive a $25,000 award to help offset law school expenses.

While the SDIS program has existed since 2013, in 2019, the firm began offering the scholarship to 1Ls instead of 2Ls in order to connect with talented, diverse students earlier in the recruiting cycle. We also added the client partnership element as a way to better connect with our clients in the drive to further diversity, equity and inclusion in the legal profession.

The firm continues to expand the SDIS program, now offering Financial Restructuring and Intellectual Property focused SDIS programs for 1L students interested in careers in these practice areas.

As a result of these enhancements, the SDIS program has allowed the firm to attract talented, diverse law students and deepen our connections with firm clients. This program has been so successful that we increased the number of scholars from 11 in 2021 to 23 in 2022.

The legal industry has consistently faced the challenge of identifying and hiring diverse legal talent. The establishment of the SDIS program has contributed significantly to the firm’s efforts to continue to provide diverse perspectives for our clients and vibrant career opportunities for lawyers. The impact on our firm’s diversity has been significant – among our summer associates, our 2022 class was our most diverse class to date and, for the first time, exceeded the most recent National Association for Law Placement (NALP) average of 42%. In addition, the number of SDIS program applicants has continued to increase year over year, from 700 applicants in 2020 to a record 1,300 applicants in 2022!

Ally do it right

Company: Ally Financial
Innovation Title: Ally’s Moguls in the Making: Building a New Generation of Entrepreneurs
Company Website:
Year Introduced: 2019

Executive Summary

Ally’s leadership has weaved diversity, inclusion, and equity into how the company was built, how it serves customers and communities, and how it welcomes teammates. At Ally, diversity isn’t just what we can see — it’s how we engage with one another and our communities to lift each other up.

As part of our commitment to financial and social inclusion, Ally leaders collaborated with the Thurgood Marshall College Fund to start the Moguls in the Making program – an entrepreneurial pitch competition that engages students from Historically Black Colleges and Universities. Program goals: 1. Empower Black and Brown students to find new pathways into business and let them show their creativity and problem-solving skills; 2. Develop a diverse early talent pipeline for the company and support the development of future leaders.

Through 2022, we’ve brought 36 Moguls on as interns and 12 have joined Ally as full-time employees in technology, finance, product development and marketing. Moguls gave the students unique networking opportunities, and access to top-tier business leaders, in addition to critical skill-building seminars and mentors. Moguls helps the next generation of talent see their own unique paths to high-wage careers in technology and financial services, and it supports economic mobility among diverse communities. In the first four years, Ally has hosted more than 200 HBCU students, providing $500K in scholarships.

Morehouse College took home the top prize and $20K scholarship for each student in 2022.

At Ally, we know that more diversity brings better ideas. The inaugural Moguls program in 2019 led to the development of Ally’s popular Fintropolis financial education game for middle schoolers, patterned after the popular Minecraft universe and built by Blockworks. A four-person Moguls team came up with the idea, pitched it to executives, prototyped it, and Ally’s tech and design teams brought it to life with their help. Fintropolis goes a long way in teaching basic financial concepts for middle school-age students, now even more critical with some states passing legislation requiring that high schools teach financial literacy courses. As players explore Fintropolis, they learn about earning money, paying taxes, budgeting, building credit and managing debt, as well as investing. The results have been staggering: the game has been downloaded 3.5 million times and hundreds of students have taken part in Fintropolis gaming sessions at home and in after-school programs.

Not only has the Moguls program made an impact on HBCU students, but it has also helped Ally build a diverse talent pipeline while increasing awareness of our company’s purpose-driven ‘do it right’ culture; Moguls leans into Ally’s commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion and allows our teammates to volunteer their time to help students build their business and financial skills. The program also addresses our corporate commitment to building a more diverse and equitable workforce, providing a blueprint for using innovation to enhance economic mobility, and identifies and nurtures qualified-candidates of color. Ally will welcome its fourth cohort of HBCU interns (and their innovative ideas) from the Moguls program in May 2023.

Dechert LLP

Company: Dechert LLP
Innovation Title: Dechert and Aspiring Solicitors – Improving access to the law
Company Website:
Year Introduced: 2017

Executive Summary

Over the past five years, Dechert’s partnership with Aspiring Solicitors (AS) has led to huge strides in the firm’s efforts to recruit diverse talent. The collaboration with AS, a non-profit organization aiming to improve access to the UK legal profession, has resulted in underrepresented groups making up over half of Dechert’s trainee intake since 2017. “Our partnership has been very successful because everyone at the firm is so invested,” said Katrina Phull, Dechert’s Global Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Manager. “Candidates really care about diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) and they are seeing firsthand that Dechert values this at all levels, and that we are attracting and retaining outstanding diverse talent.”

Founded by former Dechert trainee Chris White, AS works alongside law firms and legal teams to provide opportunities for aspiring solicitors from diverse backgrounds. At the heart of the firm’s collaboration with AS is the Commercial Awareness Competition (CAC) and the Dechert-sponsored AS Culture event. Held annually, these events give professionals from underrepresented groups access to the legal profession. In turn, this allows Dechert to identify talent from backgrounds that would otherwise be more difficult to reach. The partnership has provided Dechert with access to broad demographics, resulting in the more nuanced areas of DEI being reflected in the firm’s hiring, such as mature students, career changers and parents, as well as those from low-income backgrounds, ethnic minorities, and the LGBTQ+ community. “It doesn’t matter what people look like or where they come from,” said Gus Black, co-chair of Dechert’s global financial services group and a member of the Policy Committee. “Our objective is excellence in client service. Hiring diverse talent means we can bring a broad range of experiences and skillsets to bear on our clients’ problems. The clients get a better team and our lawyers become better lawyers.”

Dechert is now the first AS partner firm to achieve a newly qualified solicitor intake in 2022 with 50% originating from the program, which earned the firm its fourth award from AS since 2017. AS founder and CEO Chris White commented: “Dechert is a leading partner firm of AS. As such, it is fitting that they received the inaugural “Best Retention of Diverse Talent” Award for a record-setting level of representation of AS members in its newly qualified ranks. We greatly appreciate that the firm continues to invest funding, support and senior professionals’ time in a catalogue of talent development initiatives and campaigns.”

The success of the partnership with AS has transformed Dechert’s talent in London. With 50% of the firm’s 2022 newly qualified lawyers, as well as 50% of the future 2023 trainee intake coming from AS, the firm is attracting and keeping these diverse professionals. “This partnership enables us to create meaningful relationships with high-potential candidates that has led us to create an increasingly inclusive environment at the firm” says Ms. Phull, “Dechert wants to retain these attorneys because they are exceptional lawyers; they stay because they recognize the firm has a true commitment and investment in DEI.”


Company: Enact Mortgage Insurance
Innovation Title: Enact Mortgage Industry Development Program
Company Website:
Year Introduced: 2021

Executive Summary

What Makes this Initiative Unique:

The Mortgage Industry Development Program (MIDP) is the first program of its kind, bringing education of the mortgage industry to college students at Historically Black Colleges & Universities (HBCUs). By working with HBCUs, the MIDP is highly accessible to students of color. This program does not impact Enact’s profitability, but instead takes a philanthropic approach by exposing students of color to opportunities within the industry and increasing financial literacy.

The Why Behind the Purpose:

This program was designed to provide HBCU students with awareness around career opportunities in the mortgage industry and give them the foundation they need to begin a successful career in the field. The intention is that by being familiar with the opportunities available, more students will seek careers in the mortgage industry following graduation. Additionally, the optional mentorship component prepares students for their future careers, regardless of industry, by providing coaching and development opportunities.

The Positive Change:

Fannie Mae reports that the 2022 demographic of the mortgage industry is 73% white, 6% black, and 7% Latinx, which is not representative of the overall population. The industry awareness that MIDP participants receive will recruit more diverse talent into the industry and help the industry better reflect the borrowers it serves.

Additionally, the program grants the students more visibility into their options for homeownership and provides them with the knowledge they need to buy a home. With the minority homeownership gap now greater than when housing discrimination was legal, this is an important step in minimizing that gap.


Despite the program’s age, its reach has already expanded, and the industry is benefiting. In its first offering in the fall of 2021, 15 students participated from two different HBCUs through Enact’s partnership with HomeFree USA’s Center for Financial Advancement (CFA). By the 2022 spring offering, the program expanded availability to any CFA scholar interested in the content, and 47 students from 11 universities enrolled in the program. The program reached a total of 62 students over the 2021-2022 school year with 32 of the students choosing to complete the requirements to earn an official Certificate of Completion. Enact recently hired a program graduate for a full-time position, and other participants have begun work in the industry.


Research shows that black, indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC) tend to have lower rates of financial literacy than white and Asian Americans. By providing an in-depth look at the mortgage industry, students also receive a detailed explanation on credit and how loan decisions are made. The financial education provided will enable students to make better financial decisions beyond buying a home.


Most directly, this initiative impacts HBCU students, and thus students of color. The effect is more expansive, however, as it will lead to greater diversity in the industry over time, which means that BIPOC homebuyers will interact with more people in the industry who look like them. Finally, the program exposes the employee mentors to more diverse experiences and perspectives.

Freddie Mac We make home possible

Company: Freddie Mac
Innovation Title: Freddie Mac Inclusive Content Guide
Company Website:
Year Introduced: 2021

Executive Summary

What Makes this Initiative Unique:

Freddie Mac strives to capture and accurately portray the diversity of the human experience as part of our longstanding commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI). As such we partnered with Rachele Kanigel, Chair of the Journalism Department at San Francisco State University and Editor of The Diversity Style Guide to create our own custom inclusive content guide. Our guide includes references from diversity organizations such as the National Association for Black Journalists along with feedback from our Business Resource Groups, communication professionals and other DEI champions in the company.

The guide consists of usage guidelines for commonly misused or misunderstood terms in these areas: DEI, Age/Generations, Disability, Gender, Housing, LGBTQ+, Race and Ethnicity, and Technology.

The Why Behind the Purpose:

Communicating is a critical aspect of most jobs at Freddie Mac and doing so in a way that gets our message across to intended audiences is key. Using language that is inclusive not only strengthens our message but also enhances clarity. Paying attention to how we communicate also prevents distracting and insensitive use of words, expressions, stereotypes and imagery that exclude or discriminate against others. Ignoring the principles of inclusive content risks alienating customers, readers and viewers, and an uninformed and inaccurate choice can become a potential financial or reputational risk.

The Positive Change:

The Freddie Mac Inclusive Content Guide serves as an educational and reference tool to help everyone at Freddie Mac communicate in respectful and inclusive ways when reaching out to increasingly more diverse audiences.


We launched the Freddie Mac inclusive content guide in November 2022. The roll-out plan included an all-employee article, fire-side chat, and targeted training with the editor for communicators, BRG leaders and DEI champions within the company and reminder messages throughout the year to encourage people to reference the document. Best practices were also shared externally at two conferences for communication professionals on ways in which other organizations could develop their own inclusive content guide. The inclusive content guide is undergoing its annual refresh given the pace of change in language.


Teams across Freddie Mac continue to embed principles of inclusive language into how they work. Our Talent Acquisition team uses software to identify and mitigate potential bias in language in our job descriptions, helping to ensure the language is more inclusive for jobseekers. Teams within our Enterprise Operations and Technology division have also made changes to industry terminology used in their processes to be more inclusive. Our inclusive content guide was also used to help refresh our gender transition guidelines.


All Freddie Mac employees are impacted — especially those whose jobs involve communicating internally or externally. In doing so, we can continue to use words and images that convey respect for all people, sensitivity to differences and a commitment to accuracy.