Our Diversity & Inclusion

One of Jenner & Block’s core values is to create and maintain an unrivaled environment for superior talent. This means ensuring that all of our people feel respected, included and able to fully contribute.We have a variety of programs, policies and support structures designed to support this goal. A common focus and theme is helping our lawyers develop relationships that cross levels, backgrounds and offices. By building networks and establishing relationships, we help everyone succeed.

Training and Development
Our comprehensive in-house training and development programs are designed to support our lawyers in becoming the best lawyers they can be. They are led by the firm’s Chief Talent Officer. In addition, the firm expects all of our partners to mentor and train associates – everyone is responsible for developing talent, this is a defining element of our culture.

Since 2005, the firm has offered a variety of training and development programs, including annual diversity workshops, to help increase cultural competence and inclusion in the workplace. Our Mentoring Program also provides important support during the first few years of lawyer’s career. We assign mentor and mentee pairs across differences to further our goal of creating an inclusive environment. With input from our Associates Committee, the D&I Committee and the Associate Board of the D&I Committee, we continue to develop programs that enhance our formal mentoring program.  As an example, we have instituted a “buddy” program for lateral associates.  This allows mid and senior associates arriving to the firm to have a designated associate to turn to as they adjust to life at a new firm.

The firm offers diversity awareness training for all new lawyers in each of our offices, as part of their orientation. This program is mandatory for all lawyers and senior management and is designed to introduce all lawyers to the firm’s culture of inclusion.In 2020, the D&I department launched the Inclusive Leadership Training program, in which participants developed an understanding of the individual and organizational benefits of inclusion; what it means to promote inclusion at work; the role every employee plays in creating an inclusive culture; and a four-part framework for fostering inclusion. So far, more than 83% of our lawyers and professional staff have been trained on how to lead inclusively via our Inclusive Leadership Training program. In 2021, we are offering an online suite of trainings, which will be supplemented with “live” trainings throughout the year and facilitator-led discussions offered each quarter.
 
Each year, the firm hosts a large lateral associate and partner orientation program.  Each program is uniquely tailored to help new associates, lateral associates, law clerks, lateral partners and newly promoted partners integrate into the culture and practice at Jenner & Block.

Affinity Groups
Other important support structures for promoting an inclusive environment are the firm’s 10 affinity groups:

  • African American Affinity Group
  • Professional Staff African American/Black Affinity Group
  • Asian Lawyers Forum
  • Caregivers Affinity Group (includes Mother’s Circle and Dad’s Octagon subcommittees)
  • Hispanic Lawyers Forum
  • LGBTQ Forum
  • Multicultural Lawyers Affinity Group
  • Muslim Affinity Group
  • Veterans and Military Families Affinity Group 
  • Women’s Forum

These groups provide a safe pace for members  to share experiences and resources, provide role models,  informal mentoring, and give feedback to the firm on diversity-related matters. The affinity groups work with the D&I Committee, the Associate Board of the D&I Committee  and the Hiring Committee to develop programs and initiatives designed to increase diversity and provide support.

Read what members of these affinity groups have to say about their experience In Their Words.

Diversity Communications
Jenner & Block communicates about its diverse workforce and inclusive environment through firm-sponsored publications. Equal Time, the firm’s diversity newsletter, includes stories about the accomplishments of Jenner & Block's diverse lawyers; legal viewpoints from diverse lawyers and/or clients; and the pro bono and community service the firm provides on matters relating to women, minorities or LGBTQ communities. 

In addition, the firm has a diversity page on its intranet that keeps everyone up to date on current initiatives and upcoming diversity-related events and activities that the firm is hosting or sponsoring.