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Diversity and Inclusion Summit

The Kentucky Bar Association, the Louisville Bar Association and the Louis D. Brandeis School of Law at the University of Louisville hosted a Diversity and Inclusion Summit on Friday, April 10, at the Galt House Hotel in Louisville.

The summit provided practical resources and ideas for legal employers to implement their own diversity and inclusion programs; assist management and other administrators with handling diversity issues; and emphasize ways to empower attorneys from diverse backgrounds to work through these same issues to become successful contributors in their places of employment.

Speakers included Sharon E. Jones, a Harvard Law School graduate and president and founder of the Chicago-based Jones Diversity Group; Judge Bernice B. Donald, the first African-American woman to serve on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th District in Cincinnati; Judge Amul Thapar of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky, the first South Asian Article III judge; Kentucky Court of Appeals Judge Denise Clayton, the first African-American woman to serve on the Commonwealth’s Court of Appeals; as well as Judge Ernesto M. Scorsone, circuit court judge for the 22nd Circuit Court in Fayette County; Judge Brandi H. Rogers, family court judge for the 5th Circuit Court in Crittenden, Union and Webster counties; and Judge C. Derek Reed, district court judge for the 10th District Court in Hart and LaRue counties. Renee Shaw, producer and host of KET’s legislative coverage and host of “Connections with Renee Shaw” -- the state’s first statewide minority affairs program -- served as moderator for two of the summit’s panel discussions.

In conjunction with the event, on Thursday, April 9, 25 attorneys participated with 25 law students, 25 undergraduate students and 25 high school students in a pipeline service project coordinated by the law school and the Legal Aid Society to rally the involvement of attorneys in mentoring diverse students from the high school level through college and law school.

The overwhelming response to the program has been extremely gratifying. We would like to extend our sincerest thanks to the speakers and attendees for their participation in this historic event and for helping to ensure the success of the Kentucky Bar Association’s inaugural Diversity and Inclusion Summit. The evaluations and numerous comments received indicate this was an outstanding experience for all involved!

Photo Credit: Don Vish



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