Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
June is Pride Month
At Cantor Colburn, LGBTQ+ Pride Month is an opportunity to celebrate our LGBTQ+ colleagues and clients. We are committed to creating an open and affirming environment where all people of all sexual orientations, gender identities and gender expressions are included, welcomed, and celebrated.
At Cantor Colburn, we are committed to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI). Encouraging, promoting, and fostering a diverse, equitable, and inclusive work environment is a core value of the Firm. We believe that when we incorporate DEI best practices systemically, we are better able to attract, retain, and promote the best talent, create an environment where our workforce functions at the highest level, and provide the best service to our clients.
We are legal and Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) professionals who are deeply committed to diversifying the intellectual property (IP) community. We believe that the IP community greatly benefits from the inclusion and participation of women and historically underrepresented racial and ethnic minority, LGBTQ+, and disabled attorneys and agents. We partner with several large clients in collaborative, innovative ways to effectuate positive change in our DEI journeys with the goal of attracting, welcoming, encouraging and supporting women and diverse professionals in the law, STEM, innovation and entrepreneurship. We invite our clients and contacts to partner with us on solutions.
The Firm’s Equity Advancement Committee (EAC) is leading the charge to strengthen DEI at the Firm. The EAC focuses on hiring, mentoring, retaining, and promoting women and historically underrepresented racial and ethnic minority, LGBTQ+, and disabled attorneys and agents as well as eliminating systemic barriers to advancement, equity, and inclusion.
There are positive indicators regarding the Firm’s strategies and practices around tracking, mindsets, transparency and openness. Among professionals at Cantor Colburn, 30% are women and 30% are racial/ethnic minorities/LGBTQ+. The Firm’s most recent partnership class includes six attorneys, four of whom are women and two of whom are minorities.
The Firm is in the process of implementing the Mansfield Rule for Midsize Law Firms and becoming Mansfield Certified. The goal of the Mansfield Rule is to increase the representation of historically underrepresented lawyers in leadership by broadening the pool of women, LGBTQ+ lawyers, lawyers with disabilities, and/or racial/ethnic minority lawyers who are considered for leadership opportunities, promotions, entry-level and lateral attorney job openings, and opportunities to connect with clients.
The Firm’s Employee Resource Group, the Women’s Initiative, focuses on mentoring and business development training and knowledge sharing for our women professionals. Our attorneys and agents are active in affinity bars and industry associations with DEI goals.
In partnership with two of our clients, Cantor Colburn hosts a summer intern through the Sidney B. Williams, Jr. Scholarship Program, sponsored by the American Intellectual Property Law's Foundation for Advancement of Diversity in IP Law, which provides financial support, internship experience, and networking opportunities for law students from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups as they pursue careers in IP law. Cantor Colburn supports the UConn Commercialization Technology Services Fellows, which has similar goals for graduate students. Over a decade ago, the Firm established and continues to invest in the Cantor Colburn LLP Endowed Scholarship in Engineering at the University of Connecticut. The scholarship is for undergraduate engineers and gives priority consideration to female and/or African-American students.
The firm also supports numerous community organizations that focus on DEI in our communities, including the Boys & Girls Club, the Aurora Women and Girls Foundation, and the Invention Convention, to name a few.