For over 40 years, MoFo has been committed to creating a culture that respects and celebrates differences, while providing an inclusive environment where everyone’s contributions are valued. That’s why we’re proud to announce the achievement of “Mansfield Certification Plus” status for 2020, making us one of 25 firms to receive the honor consecutively for three years. To continue moving the needle forward, the firm is also joining a number of the country’s leading law firms for version 4.0 of the Mansfield Rule, set to run from July 2020 to July 2021.
The Rule is one of the winning ideas of the inaugural 2016 Women in Law Hackathon event, hosted by Stanford Law School. The Mansfield Rule was designed to explore new ways to close the gender gap and increase diversity in law firms.
MoFo legal teams participated in the high-energy Hackathon two years in a row, with San Francisco Litigation partner Anna Erickson White and her team taking third place in 2017 during the pilot session, and Brad Wine, co-chair of the firm’s Litigation Department, and his team securing first place the following year.
Inspired by the NFL’s “Rooney Rule,” which requires all teams to interview at least one minority candidate for head coach positions. The Mansﬁeld Rule measures whether law ﬁrms have considered historically underrepresented lawyers for signiﬁcant governance roles, lateral openings, and promotions. The Mansﬁeld Rule is named for Arabella Mansﬁeld, the ﬁrst woman lawyer admitted to the practice of law in the United States.
The rule measures a firm’s commitment to considering a diverse group of candidates for leadership and governance roles, with women, LGBTQ+, and attorneys of color accounting for at least 30 percent of those roles. Every year, Diversity Lab continues to expand upon the original criteria; new to version 3.0, for example was the addition of attorneys with disabilities in the populations considered. Due to growing interest from firms, Version 4.0 will launch a category for Midsize Law Firms and expand into the UK in September 2020.
By successfully demonstrating its adherence throughout the year and earning the distinction of “Mansfield Certification Plus,” MoFo will be given the opportunity to send newly hired diverse partners to one of several two-day client forums where they will be able to pitch innovative ideas, seek mentorship, and network with a variety of in-house council.
This past year, the firm sent five partners to the client forums held in New York, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C. The partners were invited to attend both days of the forums in each city. The first day was filled with intriguing TED-style talks interspersed with small-group, professional networking breaks to facilitate business connections. The second day was dedicated to small-group pitch meetings with select in-house counsel. The client forums present a unique opportunity to network with other diverse attorneys and meet with high-level in-house counsel representing companies such as CBS, Lincoln Financial Group, Pfizer, BASF, MassMutual, and PepsiCo, among others.
We are excited to have been a successful participant in Mansfield 3.0 and look forward to once again partnering with Diversity Lab and completing Mansfield 4.0.
Learn more about our participation in the Mansfield Rule here.