InterLaw Diversity Forum
The award-winning InterLaw Diversity Forum was established in 2008 by founder & chair Daniel Winterfeldt, originally as an inter-organisational forum for all LGBT+ personnel in the legal sector (for both lawyers, including private practice and in-house counsel, as well as non-lawyers).
Since its founding the InterLaw Diversity Forum has expanded its scope beyond LGBT+ to encompass all strands of diversity and inclusion (including Race & Ethnicity, Disability, and social mobility), with a particular focus on cultural change in the workplace and ‘multiple identities’/intersectionality.
Since the launch of the InterLaw Diversity Forum, the legal sector’s performance in Stonewall’s Work Equality Index (WEI) has dramatically improved:
• In 2007 there were no law firms represented in the Top 100 Employers, and the legal sector ranked second from the bottom
• In 2017 there were 17 law firms recognized in the Top 100 Employers, and the legal sector was the top-ranking sector overall.
Stonewall has stated: “A major part of the movement forward for the [legal] sector has been the InterLaw Diversity Forum. It helped provide a sector-specific focus.” This success has encouraged the InterLaw Diversity Forum to expand its offering.
The InterLaw Diversity Forum currently has more than 4,000 members and supporters from over 215 law firms and chambers, and 285 corporates and financial institutions.
The InterLaw Diversity Forum is run by:
Daniel Winterfeldt, Founder and Chair, InterLaw Diversity Forum
Partner, US Securities & Global Capital Markets, Reed Smith
Diversity & Inclusion Consultant, CMS
Dee Sekar, Deputy Chair, InterLaw Diversity Forum
Corporate Responsibility Manage, Gowling WLG
• The InterLaw Diversity Forum holds monthly panel-discussion meetings for both our LGBT+ Network and our Race & Ethnicity (BAME) Network.
Our BAME Network was awarded “Outstanding BAME Employee Network of the Year” at the 2017 UK Diversity Legal Awards.
• Our Disability Network, ENABLE, launched in December 2017.
• The Apollo Project holds an annual, cross-sector competition seeking out evidence-based examples of best practice for inclusive workplace cultures, and provides these as a free resource that other organisations can adapt to their specific needs. The Financial Times publishes an annual Global Special Report highlighting the Apollo Project.
The InterLaw Diversity Forum’s Apollo Project was shortlisted for the 2016 FT Innovative Lawyer Awards for “Innovation in People”.
• The Apollo Leadership Institute is a global hub for General Counsel from all sectors, and focuses on inclusive leadership and culture, diversity and inclusion, and the creation of meritocratic workplaces.
• InterLawConnect, our new cutting-edge, online mentoring programme, is launching in early 2018
• The InterLaw Diversity Forum Student Lab connects high-potential diverse students across the UK with their peers, law firms, corporate, institutions, and barrister chambers
• Our 2012 report, Career Progression in the Legal Sector, is now being updated for 2018 with new research data.
• Purple Reign is a photographic project which features LGBT+ and ally role models and focuses on intersectionality. Purple Reign Phase II is now underway.
Purple Reign was shortlisted for the 2016 FT Innovative Lawyer Awards for “Innovation in People”.
• Our annual charity fundraiser, the Winter Carnival, has to date raised over £400,000 for the Albert Kennedy Trust and Switchboard – The LGBT+ Helpline