Commitment – Diversity and inclusion is highly valued at Foster Pepper, and we are committed to ensuring that both are integrated into the Firm’s culture and the way we do business. Diversity and inclusion help us appreciate the differences in each other and improve our ability to serve clients through creative, collaborative advocacy. We are committed to recruiting diverse attorneys and staff, training and promoting our workforce, and increasing diverse representation in all aspects of the firm, including in firm leadership.
Foster Pepper’s goal is a workforce reflective of the communities we serve. Currently over 17 percent of our attorneys and 25 percent of our staff represent diverse backgrounds. Over 35 percent of our newly hired attorneys are diverse and we are committed to an inclusive and supportive work environment with opportunity for all to thrive. Inclusion and diversity are core components to our Strategic Plan, critical to the success of our Firm and integrated throughout our hiring, training and leadership structures.
Leadership – Foster Pepper’s diverse attorneys and staff are active in firm leadership and serve on a wide variety of firm management committees. Currently half of the attorneys on the firm’s Executive Committee are women or are from diverse backgrounds. The firm also has numerous committees chaired by women and diverse attorneys.
Recruiting – To support our recruiting efforts, we established the Foster Pepper 1L Diversity Fellowship. This Fellowship provides the recipient with a paid summer associate position in our Seattle office and a $7,500 academic scholarship. For more information about our 1L Diversity Fellowship click here. Foster Pepper also participates in the Northwest Minority Job Fair and is a founder of the Puget Sound Minority Clerkship program. We participate in various diversity receptions throughout the year at local law schools including Seattle University and University of Washington and local law firms. We also work in partnership with the Washington State Minority Bar Associations to pursue hiring from a diverse candidate pool.
Training – We provide sensitivity and diversity and inclusion training on an annual basis to our attorneys and staff. Our attorneys and FPID committee members attend a variety of diversity and inclusion trainings, presentations, and affinity group events and bring key information and insight back to the committee for discussion and ideas to implement. We have worked with several diversity and inclusion experts who have helped us appreciate the value that diversity and inclusion brings and how it helps us better serve our clients. Our diversity and inclusion program has grown over the past few years and we are putting more resources than ever into these very important initiatives.
Community Outreach – Foster Pepper believes strongly in supporting efforts to enhance diversity beyond its own workplace. The Firm is proud to be a sponsor of the Statewide Initiative for Diversity, and participated in the Statewide Diversity Conference in 2012, 2013, and 2014. We are proud sponsors of the following important organizations:
Pro Bono – The firm’s attorneys also generously donate their time and talent to pro bono legal services by providing legal advocacy to vulnerable communities and diverse constituencies. Foster Pepper represents many diverse groups including Native American children, Holocaust survivors, domestic violence survivors, microentrepreneurs, nonprofit organizations, and low-income families. To learn more about our pro bono work and the communities we work for and with, please see our most recent Pro Bono Annual Report click here.
Foster Pepper Inclusion & Diversity Committee – To ensure the firm continues to attract, retain and promote talent from diverse backgrounds, the firm has established the Foster Pepper Inclusion and Diversity Committee (the “FPID”). The FPID has established the Diversity and Inclusion Policy and Directive and a strategic plan to implement a diversity program. The FPID promotes and oversees inclusion and diversity efforts, and implements best practices to improve inclusion and diversity efforts. The FPID’s responsibilities include:
2014 Foster Pepper Inclusion & Diversity (FPID) Committee Members: