Where are the Black partners in big law?

empty boardroom

According to The American Lawyer’s recently released Diversity Scorecard, the firm with the highest percentage of minority attorneys and partners — 32.5% and 23.9%, respectively — also has zero Black partners. Let that marinate.

Fragomen, Del Rey, Bernsen & Loewy is a 371-lawyer immigration firm with its primary office in New York. Its top prize in the diversity ranking is a step in the right direction, but I must ask, where are the Black partners?

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This big firm was criticized for lack of diversity. Now it’s No. 1 for black lawyers, new report

ABA JOURNAL — Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP came under fire for its lack of diversity when a photo of promoted partners, which appeared to include one white woman and 11 white men, was posted to social media in December 2018.

The firm found a bit of redemption in March. A report released by the nonprofit group Lawyers of Color found that Paul | Weiss had the highest percentage of black lawyers (8.27%) among the firms polled.

However, of the nearly 400 law firms studied, only 3.2% of lawyers were black, and black lawyers made up just 1.83% of partners. Big Law is working toward being more inclusive, but there is still a long way to go.

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