Diversity & Inclusion
Diversity and inclusion are 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 16 percent of our attorneys and 20 percent of our staff represent diverse backgrounds. Over the past three years, 20 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.
Foster Pepper’s diverse attorneys and staff are active in firm leadership and serve on a wide variety of firm management committees. The firm also has numerous committees chaired by women and diverse attorneys.
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. Foster Pepper also supports diversity by participating in the University of Washington’s Gregoire Fellows Program, created to help increase diversity in the legal profession by supporting minority law students at the UW School of Law. Additionally, we participate in various diversity receptions throughout the year at local law schools including Seattle University and University of Washington, as well as at local law firms and work in partnership with the Washington State Minority Bar Associations to pursue hiring from a diverse candidate pool.
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.
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 has participated in the Statewide Diversity Conference since 2012.
We are proud sponsors of the following important organizations:
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 (“FPID”). FPID has established the Diversity and Inclusion Policy and Directive and a strategic plan to implement a diversity program and promotes and oversees inclusion and diversity efforts, and implements best practices to improve inclusion and diversity efforts.
FPID’s responsibilities include:
- Recruit, Retain and Mentor – Collaboration with the Recruiting and Professional Development Committees, Professional Development Counsel, and our Human Resources Director to identify and attract exceptional candidates from diverse backgrounds and supports their success with training and mentoring.
- Train and Educate – Development and implementation of internal diversity and inclusion training and educational programs.
- Key Firm Committee and Leadership Roles – Identify and mentor attorneys and staff of diverse backgrounds to participate in leadership positions in the firm. The firm strives to maintain and increase the diversity represented on the Executive Committee, other committees, and in the Practice Group Leaders.
- Public Service and Sponsorships in Support of Diversity Related Organizations – Improve our visibility and leadership in various affinity groups. We highly encourage staff and attorneys to be leaders in organizations that promote diversity.