LGN Adopts Anti-Racism Resolution
WHEREAS, Lockridge Grindal Nauen P.L.L.P. recognizes that there has been systemic and structural racism, overt and implicit bias, and other unjust prejudices and practices that have led and continue to lead to racial inequities throughout society and the legal profession; and
WHEREAS, we believe that the legal system and the rule of law, and our law firm, has both the capacity and the moral obligation to help create a more fair and just society; and
WHEREAS, such racial inequities, and their causes, can be and should be identified, addressed and eradicated;
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, by both the partnership and the firm as a whole, that Lockridge Grindal Nauen P.L.L.P. is committed to doing its part, intentionally and continually, in eradicating racial inequities and ensuring that our firm more closely mirrors our values of inclusion and diversity;
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that Lockridge Grindal Nauen P.L.L.P. has taken the following steps in support of this commitment:
- Established a Diversity and Inclusion Committee, consisting of professionals from across the firm, including firm leadership, that meets regularly to monitor and address the firm’s efforts at achieving a diverse and inclusive firm, and which regularly shares and sponsors educational opportunities and events to the firm;
- Employed practices consistent with the Mansfield Rule when making hires for all levels of employment, in order to ensure that there is an opportunity for diverse applicants and candidates to be considered;
- Established a pro bono policy that supports providing legal work at no charge so that disadvantaged persons have access to quality legal representation;
- Annually participated in law clerk hiring programs for diverse law students;
- Established hiring and associate mentoring and review programs that have been monitored and revised in order to minimize any impact of bias;
- Established associate development practices to provide opportunities for professional involvement and feedback and participation in significant litigation matters;
- Established a tradition of professionals serving as volunteers or in leadership for non-profit organizations that play a part in creating a more fair and just society;
- Engaged in multiple professional training sessions for all employees on elimination of bias;
- Engaged in occasional book club events focusing on topics of racism, bias and injustice;
- Recognized Juneteenth as a paid firm holiday;
- Established a wellness committee with a robust, inclusive and personal approach; and
- Joined as a member of the Twin Cities Diversity in Practice organization.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that Lockridge Grindal Nauen P.L.L.P. will take the following future steps in support of this commitment:
- Annual review of the firm’s ongoing antiracism and diversity, inclusion and equity efforts;
- Annual commitment by each professional to make their own contributions to inclusion through meaningful work opportunities, mentoring, or other means;
- Increase representation at the firm of historically underrepresented groups to meet or exceed the representation of those groups in the legal profession;
- Annual review of hiring, retention and advancement of underrepresented groups and related law firm practices and guidelines;
- Establish data points and goals by which the firm can measure progress; and
- Listen, learn and improve on the firm’s commitment.
Nine LGN Attorneys served as Reader mentors at Folwell Performing Arts Magnet School
During the school year, nine LGN attorneys have served as Reader mentors to 7th and 8th Grade Student Writers at Folwell Performing Arts Magnet School in Minneapolis. Each week students wrote essays on assigned topics which were mailed to mentors to read and provide feedback. Having a specific dedicated audience for their writing proved invaluable in motivating the students to work on and improve their writing. Students, teachers, mentors, and program coordinators gathered to meet and celebrate the program’s school year success. For over 40%, English is not their primary language. Approximately 90% of the student population has diverse ethnic backgrounds. LGN Partner Heidi Silton will serve on the Reader/Writer Board beginning Fall of 2018. You can learn more about Reader/Writer at https://www.readerwriter.org/.
Pictured from left to right are LGN attorneys Gregg Fishbein and Heidi Silton, Ryan VanThorre, 8th grade Language Arts teacher, Angela Dwyer, Special Education Teacher, LGN attorneys Kristen Marttila, David Zoll, and Elizabeth Odette; Lia Venchi, Reader/Writer Facilitator and Founder, Zoe Odegard, Reader/Writer Assistant Processor. Not pictured, Stacey Crews, 7th grade Language Arts teacher, and LGN Attorneys Simeon Morbey and Charlie Nauen.
LGN attorneys step up to support MWL clothing drive
LGN attorneys and staff were proud to again donate clothing, jewelry, handbags, and shoes to the Minnesota Women Lawyers (MWL) Clothing Drive in support of the Tubman Center and Dress for Success, which will provide them to low-income women seeking jobs.
Dress for Success empowers women to achieve economic independence by providing a network of support, professional attire and the development tools to help women thrive in work and in life. The Tubman Center helps women, children and families throughout the Twin Cities struggling with relationship violence, substance abuse and mental health.
LGN Associate Devona L. Wells organized the LGN effort to donate items for the MWL Clothing Drive.
LGN employees raise more than $7,400 for Neighborhood House food drive
LGN staff and attorneys raised more than $7,400 for the Neighborhood House food drive in March, a 15% increase over LGN’s donation last year.
Neighborhood House, a non-profit in St. Paul, helps nearly 15,000 people every year, including immigrants, refugees and long-term residents, develop the skills, knowledge, and confidence to thrive in diverse communities. In 2017, Neighborhood House shared nearly 1 million pounds of food with families throughout the city. Kudos to the firm’s staff and attorneys for their generous contributions.
LGN partners with FamilyWise to adopt a family in need
For the 9th year in a row, Lockridge Grindal Nauen has partnered with FamilyWise, an organization dedicated to strengthening families by promoting the safety, stability, and well-being of children, to adopt a family in need for the holidays. FamilyWise began in 1976 and has expanded over the years to offer a comprehensive array of family strengthening programs to help families overcome the many challenges they face.
This year, LGN collected over $1,000 in donations and gifts for a family of seven. Thank you, FamilyWise, for allowing us to help brighten the holiday season for a deserving family.
Elizabeth Odette, Rachel Kitze Collins, Kate Baxter-Kauf, and Kristen Marttila named North Star Lawyers
The Minnesota State Bar Association recognizes members who provide 50 hours or more of pro bono legal services per year as North Star Lawyers.
Elizabeth Odette worked with the Children’s Law Center representing youth in foster care. Kate Baxter-Kauf represented indigent criminal defendants through the MSBA Appellate Practice Section’s Public Defender Appellate Pro Bono Program. Through the Volunteer Lawyers Network, Kristen Marttila represented a client seeking expungement of a criminal record, and both Kristen and Rachel Kitze Collins represented Wilderness Watch, a national wilderness-protection group, in a Boundary Waters case.
The list of these lawyers was printed in a full page advertisement in the Star Tribune last week.