NALP Directory of Legal Employers

Directory Year: 2022

Dentons US LLP - Firmwide US

Diversity & Inclusion

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Diversity Chair

Diversity Chair Prefix Co-Chairs
Diversity Chair First Name Ms. Gail Lione
Diversity Chair Last Name Mr. Thurbert Baker

Diversity Contact Information

Diversity Contact Prefix Ms.
Diversity Contact First Name Ada
Diversity Contact Last Name Ejikeme
Link to your organization's diversity website

Recruitment methods

Which of the following methods do you use to increase the presence and retention of under-represented groups? (Check all that apply) Diversity job fairs
Outreach to law student groups
Formal mentoring efforts
Bar-sponsored programs
Firm diversity committee
Recruit at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU)

Diversity at Dentons

Dentons is committed to fostering an inclusive and dynamic culture that welcomes, values and respects the contributions of our diverse talent, and we leverage the diverse perspectives and experiences of our lawyers and professionals to provide exceptional service to our diverse clients. By attracting, supporting, promoting and retaining individuals from all backgrounds, inclusive of race, ethnicity, faith, religion or spiritual beliefs, gender, gender identity, age, sexual orientation, abilities, social perspective and other characteristics, we create a dynamic and inclusive work environment that is critical to our success.

We adopted a Five-Year Diversity and Inclusion Strategic Plan in 2020, which is aligned with the Firm’s strategic plan and establishes our approach to the recruitment, development, advancement and retention of our women and diverse lawyers. The focus of our Diversity and Inclusion Committee and WomenLEAD Committee is to ensure that best practices are observed in the implementation of our Strategic Plan. The committees are supported by our diversity and inclusion team, and together they are charged with increasing our diverse talent representation, expanding our developmental programs and providing client engagement opportunities.

Dentons takes an active approach to creating and nurturing an inclusive, diverse workplace that attracts, supports, promotes and retains individuals from all backgrounds through the following efforts:

Professional Development and Advancement Programs

  • Emerge Sponsorship Program: Designed to advance high potential diverse lawyers towards partnership and leadership, the program undertakes individual and teaming assessments, sponsorship training, career planning and business development coaching for protégés and sponsors.
  • Preparing for Rain: Dedicated to help women lawyers hone their rainmaking skills, the program guides women lawyers through their "five-year moment"—the years immediately preceding and following promotion to partner—by addressing systemic and individual barriers to business development success often faced during this time.
  • The Executive Mentoring Program: Pairs members of the US Board with our Black and LGBTQ+ associates. In addition to direct mentoring of our associates by our Board members, this two-way mentoring program is designed to increase awareness of differences and to educate and challenge our Board members on their colleagues’ experiences, ultimately helping all become stronger and more effective leaders.

Recruiting and Retaining Diverse Lawyers

  • As part of our recruiting efforts, we recruited from Howard Law School and will welcome a Howard 1L this summer. We participated in diversity job fairs, including Lavender Law Conference and Career Fair, the Northeast Black Law Student Association Career Fair, the University of Missouri Diversity Fair, and the Southeast Minority Job Fair. We participate in the LCLD 1L Scholars Program and the Colorado Pledge to Diversity Group’s 1L Summer Clerkship program.
  • Collaboration with diverse law student organizations to increase awareness of Dentons’ brand and career opportunities.
    • Dentons hosts an annual event, “Navigating to Big Law,” which is designed to introduce diverse students to a large law firm environment. The program includes a panel discussion and networking event and provides students with an overview of the skills, tools and resources needed to obtain—and succeed at—a job in Big Law after graduation.
    • Our San Francisco and Oakland offices send representatives to the Bay Area Legal Recruitment Association (BALRA) Summer Associate Diversity Mixer and the BALRA 1L Diversity Resume and Interview Skills Workshop.
  • Participation in diversity and inclusion industry initiatives such as the Mansfield Rule, Human Rights Campaign Corporate Equality Index, and CEO Action for Diversity and Inclusion Pledge.
  • Dentons US achieved Mansfield Rule Certification Plus for the past three years (2019-2021). Certified Plus status indicates that we considered at least 30 percent women, lawyers of color and LGBTQ+ lawyers for leadership positions and senior level recruiting over the year and that we reached at least 30 percent diverse lawyer representation in a large number of our key leadership roles and committees. Dentons has achieved Mansfield Certification for four consecutive years and is participating in the current round of certification, Mansfield 5.0.
  • Forming alliances with key organizations such as Catalyst, the Diversity and Flexibility Alliance (DFA), the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD), the Minority Corporate Counsel Association(MCCA), National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) and the National Bar Association to advance diversity and inclusion in the legal community
  • Participation in diversity and inclusion events, such as the MCCA’s Creating Pathways to Diversity Conference and Diversity Gala, the Hispanic National Bar Association’s Corporate Counsel Convention, the National Asian Pacific Bar Association Convention, and the National Bar Association Convention.

Diversity and Inclusion Initiatives

  • Practice Group Diversity Partner Initiative: Dentons implemented the practice group diversity partner role to ensure that our diversity and inclusion priorities are part of each practice’s day-to-day activities, including staffing, recruiting, pitching, and mentoring. Firm leadership also works closely with practice group leaders and practice group diversity partners to ensure that all lawyers have equal access to meaningful work and client-facing opportunities.
  • The Diversity Creditable Hour Policy: Ensures our lawyers receive up to 150 hours of credit per year for specified diversity and inclusion activities.
  • Allyship Initiative: Following Dentons Global “2020 Year of the Ally” Campaign, the Firm launched the Allyship Initiative to connect, educate and create a safe space for all partners and employees to help build a more diverse and inclusive workforce. Through this initiative, all colleagues, including lawyers, professionals and staff are invited to participate in monthly educational discussions to activate Allyship and further diversity and inclusion within our Firm and beyond.
  • A Fresh Start Initiative - As Dentons prepared for the return of colleagues to the office, we are focused on providing ongoing training and opportunities to increase cultural awareness and drive inclusive behavior. In continuing our commitment to leading courageous conversation across the Firm about D&I, Dentons launched A Fresh Start in 2021. This new initiative is an experiential learning series for leadership in the Firm to address implicit bias and showcase best practices for inclusive leadership. These sessions were geared to train our leaders to drive inclusive conversations in their day-to-day activity.
  • Affinity Groups: Dentons’ Asian, Black, Disability, Hispanic/Latinix, LGBT+, Native American, working parents and Veterans Affinity Groups help foster an inclusive culture by supporting the professional advancement of its diverse members through networking, training and business development initiatives.
  • WomenLEAD: Dentons’ WomenLEAD Committee empowers and supports women through networking opportunities, training initiatives and business and client development events.
  • Diversity and Inclusion Speaker Series: Ongoing conversations with employees, clients, diversity leaders and other industry champions throughout the legal profession addressing a wide range of diversity and inclusion topics.
  • Diversity and Inclusion trainings: Designed to help Dentons’ colleagues become more thoughtful about how they interact with others.
Non-discrimination policy

Employment opportunities at the Firm are and shall continue to be open to all qualified applicants on the basis of their experience, aptitudes, and abilities. Employment and advancement at the Firm are based on the individual’s achievement, performance, ability, dedication, professionalism, potential for promotion, and Firm needs. We do not discriminate in any of our employment policies or practices on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, disability, age, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other personal characteristic protected by applicable law.

Diversity fellowships or scholarships

Does your organization or office sponsor/offer a Diversity Fellowship or Scholarship? Yes
If yes, is the program open to 1L
Please provide a brief description of the program

Dentons participates in the 1L Scholars Program through LCLD. In addition to receiving a paid position in our Summer Associate Program, Dentons LCLD Scholars attend the annual LCLD 1L Scholars retreat and participate in the LCLD’s Law School Mentor Program, in which students are paired with a LCLD Fellow who will mentor them through bar passage. We also offer an additional Dentons Diversity Scholar stipend to our LCLD 1L Scholars. Scholars who return for a second summer will receive an additional $5,000 at the completion of a successful second summer, including receipt and acceptance of an offer to join the firm as an entry-level associate.

Dentons also participates in the Colorado Pledge to Diversity program. The Colorado Pledge to Diversity Legal Group was founded in 1993 by 13 Denver area law firms dedicated to bringing about real change to the legal community through diversity. The 1L Summer Clerkship Program comprises of around 20 Denver law firms and corporate legal departments. It is designed to expose diverse law students to larger law firms or corporate legal departments during their 1L summer.

Affinity group information

Does your organization or office have affinity groups? Yes
If yes, please describe your affinity groups below

Affinity Groups

Dentons Affinity Groups help enhance and foster an inclusive Firm culture by supporting the professional advancement of diverse members through networking, training and business development initiatives. All affinity groups are open to lawyers, and business services professionals in an effort to create a truly inclusive environment,

Affinity Groups include:

  • Asian, South Asian, Pacific-American Professionals (ASAPP)
  • Black Professional Alliance
  • Disability / Accessibility Affinity Group
  • Hispanic/Latinx Organization for Leadership and Advancement (HOLA)
  • Native American Affinity Group
  • Parents & Carers
  • Veterans Affinity Group

Dentons WomenLEAD

WomenLEAD (Leadership, Entrepreneurship, Advancement and Development) provides tools and opportunities to help women succeed and advance. Our WomenLEAD Committee, as well as local committees in each of our US offices, organize a variety of programs every year. Our annual WomenLEAD Excellence Awards recognize lawyers and professionals who go the extra mile to aid and advance women in the workplace.