Leadership Council on Legal Diversity Logo April 25, 2024

APRIL 2024

LCLD Insider

Welcome to the LCLD Insider, our monthly newsletter. This publication is for you, and we welcome your feedback and ideas, as well as any news you might be interested in passing along. Please share the Insider with your support staff, diversity directors, and marketing departments to keep them better informed about what LCLD is doing.

— Robert Grey, President

In this Issue

Understanding DEI After SFFA and Muldrow: Updates on the Evolving Legal Landscape

Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court handed down another decision that has implications for both discrimination claims and DEI initiatives. The Meltzer Center for Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging at NYU provided LCLD with the below assessment: 

“By eliminating any need to prove a ‘significant,’ ‘serious,’ ‘material,’ or ‘substantial’ harm, the Court has likely made it easier to succeed in a discrimination claim. This is a double-edged sword: it may become a bit easier to challenge some DEI programs, but it will also be a bit easier to bring traditional discrimination claims on behalf of marginalized group members.”

You can read the Muldrow v. City of St. Louis decision here, and find more background on the case here.

To learn more about how these changes may affect your organization, join LCLD on Thursday, June 27, at 1:00 p.m. ET as we welcome back Professor Kenji Yoshino, Chief Justice Earl Warren Professor of Constitutional Law at NYU School of Law, and David Glasgow, Executive Director of the Meltzer Center for Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging, to unpack the challenges, trends, and opportunities that have emerged in the DEI field over the last year.

Register today.

For questions about the Better Than Before series, please contact LCLD Member Initiatives Manager Caitlin Puffenberger.

2024 Fellows and Pathfinders Spring into Programming

From February 21–24, 2024, the brand-new Fellows and Pathfinder classes met face to face for the first time. The Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina, located on the waterfront near the historic Gaslamp district, served as a sun-filled gathering place for the 379 Fellows and 403 Pathfinders in attendance. Each day, the classes attended interactive sessions led by industry experts, who covered topics ranging from tackling generational friction in the workplace to harnessing the power of personal branding.

The 2024 Spring Meetings left lasting impressions on all who attended. With a 96% satisfaction rate given by each class, it’s no wonder the enthusiasm was so palpable across all four days. We can't wait to see these classes reconnect at the 2024 Fellows and Pathfinder Fall Meetings in Washington, DC.

Read the full article.

LCLD Alumni Join the Leadership Ranks

2018 Pathfinder and 2022 Fellow Kenneth Trujillo-Jamison was elected Managing Partner at Willenken.

2022 Fellow Koren Stevenson has been named General Counsel of Planned Parenthood Northern California.

2015 Fellow Travis Torrence was promoted to U.S. Head of Legal at Shell USA.

2013 Fellow Lica Tomizuka has assumed the role of Minneapolis office leader at Faegre Drinker.

Welcome, New Member!

Jeny Maier, Managing Partner, Axinn, Veltrop & Harkrider LLP.

Upcoming Events through Mid-May 2024

LCLD thanks all of the community members who have come together to plan and participate in our recent events. Take a look at our upcoming events below and we hope to see you soon! 


  • Atlanta LCLD Community Happy Hour | April 25.
    Join us to reconnect and network with fellow members of the LCLD Atlanta Community. Thank you to Tanya Nesbitt and Thompson Hine for hosting this event.
  • Memphis Alumni: Leaders in Conversation | May 1.
    Join us for a discussion and Q&A with Jeana Littrell, VP of Litigation and DEI Council Chair at FedEx Express, and Ed Stanton, Partner, and Practice Group Leader at Butler Snow. Thank you to Butler Snow for hosting this event.
  • Houston Alumni: Happy Hour | May 1.
    Join us for an evening of networking, lite bites, and putt-putt at Puttery Houston. Thank you to Porter Hedges for hosting this event.


  • Leadership Lunch: St. Louis | May 1.
    Kate Dugan, General Counsel & Corporate Secretary, Energizer, and Joe Glynias, Chair Elect, Husch Blackwell LLP, will host Fellows for a Leadership Lunch at the St. Louis, MO, office of Energizer.
  • Learning Experience: Capital One | May 7-8.
    Matt Cooper, General Counsel, Capital One Financial, invites LCLD Fellows and Alumni to a Learning Experience in McLean, VA.


  • Webinar #1: Building Business Momentum Now & Into the Future | May 14.
    2024 Fellows and Pathfinders, join Tasneem Khokha, former law firm partner and current Managing Director at GrowthPlay, for your first joint webinar of the program year. This interactive session is designed to equip you with practical tactics and a renewed approach to creating business development momentum now and into the future.


For questions, please contact:

In the News

“One of the most inspiring things about our [pro bono] program is the way that we’ve been able to export it around the world, and it looks different in different parts of the world,” said LCLD Member David Zapolsky, General Counsel of Amazon.

LCLD Member Ira Coleman, Chair of McDermott Will & Emery, was interviewed on the latest Legal Speak podcast episode, “Big Law Better, Explained.”

LCLD Member Amie Colby, Managing Partner of Troutman Pepper, was interviewed about her recent appointment to Managing Partner and offers advice for lawyers whose goal is to ascend to firm leadership.

2020 Pathfinder Marcus Childress of Jenner & Block co-authored a guest column examining recent anti-DEI efforts from higher education to corporate diversity – and what to expect next.

2018 Fellow Nikia Gray, NALP Executive Director, and LCLD Diversity Professionals Yusuf Zakir of Davis Wright Tremaine, Alexis Robertson of Foley & Lardner, and Virginia Essandoh of Ballard Spahr, respond to recent shifts in Big Law’s DEI strategies.


LCLD Member Yvette Ostolaza of Sidley Austin was profiled in Forbes as one of this year’s top lawyers. Other LCLD Members recognized include:

  • David Boies and Sigrid McCawley, Boies Schiller Flexner
  • Michele Connell, Squire Patton Boggs
  • Doug Gibson, Covington & Burling
  • Adam Hakki, Shearman & Sterling
  • Deborah Read, Thompson Hine
  • William Savitt, Wachtell
  • Jennifer Selendy, Selendy Gay

2023 Pathfinder Jessica Knox is one of four attorneys selected for the American Bar Association (ABA) Forum on Construction Law Diversity Fellowship.

2020 Fellow Ann Staggs was honored by Corporate Counsel Business Journal among the “Top 50 Women to Watch: Women Influencing the Future of Business and Law” for her global privacy, cybersecurity, and AI work.

2024 Pathfinder Robin Holts was elected to the Board of Directors for Philadelphia VIP, one of Philadelphia’s premier legal pro bono not-for-profit organizations.

2024 Fellow Charles Traughber was appointed by the Governor of Tennessee to the Board of Trustees for Tennessee State University.

2023 Pathfinder Fatima Garcia has been selected as one of the recipients of the Hispanic National Bar Association/VIA 2024 “Top Lawyers Under 40” Award.

2021 Pathfinder Charissa Walker was selected to Co-Chair Tucker Ellis’s Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Committee.

2024 Pathfinder Nick McCoy was named to the Leadership Center for Excellence’s “Northern Virginia 40 Under 40” list.


Various LCLD Member Organizations were recently featured in the media for DE&I-related accomplishments.

Jamie Dumas

Senior Marketing and Communications Manager, LCLD

If you have any news or honors that are relevant to LCLD Members, please email Jamie Dumas at jdumas@lcld.com.