Dewey & LeBoeuf encourage diversity in outside counsel

August 25, 2010 Dewey & LeBoeuf have been promoting diversity beyond their own offices, sending letters to general counsel encouraging them seek diverse (female, ethnic minority or gay) outside counsel to work on client matters.

"Firms have probably been more the recipient of requests to do things rather than the ones initiating the discussion," said Michele Coleman Mayes, general counsel of Allstate Corporation, a Dewey client.

Vivian L. Polak, a partner who chairs Dewey's diversity committee, wrote the following statement in the letters: "Even if the sole outcome is that the corporation's 'go-to' firms improve their diversity efforts in order to remain in consideration for the new assignments, this type of process will result in greater diversity in the profession".

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