The Florida Bar
Diversity in the Legal Profession

Inclusion . . . The Path to Unity

Mission: To increase diversity and inclusion in The Florida Bar so that the Bar will reflect the demographics of the state, to develop opportunities for community involvement, and to make leadership roles within the profession and The Florida Bar accessible to all attorneys, including those who are racially, ethnically and culturally diverse, women, members of the LGBT community and persons with disabilities.

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Diversity Efforts

VIDEO: 2016-2017 Diversity Chair Brittany Maxey at the Council of Sections Meeting (YouTube 12:04)

Diversity and Inclusion Committee: Mission and Membership

2016 Gender Bias/Diversity Committee

VIDEO: The Florida Bar Diversity & Inclusion Committee: How To Get Involved External Link

Event Calendar

recommendations from the Program Evaluation Committee PDF document opens in new window, The Florida Bar is overhauling its diversity efforts, including creating a new Diversity and Inclusion Committee.

The Board of Governors, at its May 2010 meeting,
approved a dozen recommendations from the PEC, including adopting a definition of diversity, transferring functions of the Member Outreach Committee to the new committee, and creating a Florida Bar diversity grant program for local bars.

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Definition of Diversity

The term “diversity” has a dynamic meaning that changes as the demographics of Floridians change. Apart from differences in race, color, gender, national origin, religion, age, sexual orientation, citizenship, and geography, to mention a few, the public and our profession will experience changes in thought, culture, and beliefs. These demographics are constantly in flux. Defining “diversity” based on current differences would limit its application to future changes, and likewise restrict or limit The Florida Bar’s consideration of and response to such changes.
--The Florida Bar Board of Governors, May 2010
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Commitment to Promoting Diversity

The Florida Bar is fully committed to the enhancement of diversity within the Bar, the legal profession, legal education, and in the justice system, and affirms its commitment toward a diverse and inclusive environment with equal access and equal opportunity for all.

--The Florida Bar Board of Governors, May 2010
The Florida Bar President’s Special Task Force
Florida Bar President Eugene Pettis appointed an 11-member task force in February 2014 to determine why diverse candidates were not applying for Judicial Nominating Commission appointment or for judgeships. The task force issued a report in May 2014.

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Voluntary Bar Association 2016-2017 Diversity Leadership Grants

The purpose of this voluntary bar association grant program is to support initiatives and programs which encourage diversity, diversity training and dialogue among lawyers in Florida through financial support of conferences, seminars, summits and symposia planned and hosted by local and specialty bar associations.

A Notification to Applicants
Completed proposals must be submitted by email and received on or before July 22, 2016.

Applicants will be notified whether programs have been approved for funding by September 2, 2016. Opportunities for program funding may be available in the spring if all available grant funding is not committed in this grant application. However, applications are considered on a first-come, first-serve basis, and organizations are encouraged to submit applications in this grant funding cycle.

The upcoming Florida Bar Convention will be held June 21-24, 2017. April 17, 2017, is the deadline for funded organizations to have held the programs and complied with all grant funding requirements, including the submission and documented acceptance of the required final report, and be eligible for outstanding diversity program awards.

Grant Application

Instructions, Grant Proposal, Terms & ConditionsPDF document opens in new window

Section II Summary Project Report Form PDF document opens in new window

2015-16 Florida Bar Diversity Grant Applications (PDF)

Examples of Voluntary Bar Diversity Seminars
In an effort to assist Voluntary Bar Associations statewide become well equipped to address the topic of diversity, we have gathered the following information. Several local Bar Associations have provided some valuable background information that may serve as a template for organizing a diversity summit/symposium in your communities.

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Diversity Resources

The Supreme Court Standing Committee on Fairness and Diversity External Link

Diversity in the Legal Profession June 2009 Status Report for the 2004 Final Report and Recommendations PDF document opens in new window

Florida Bar News Diversity-based articles during the past year

Diversity in the Legal Profession 2004 Report PDF document opens in new window
The 2004 Diversity in the Legal Profession Final Report and Recommendations serve as a blueprint for The Florida Bar and others affiliated with the legal profession in Florida to follow in developing a plan to increase participation, retention and representation of diverse attorneys.
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Disability Resources
Do your filings comply with Disability Law?

Resources to accommodate lawyers and clients with disabilities

Survey on Lawyers with Disabilities (2006) PDF document opens in new window
In May 2006, the Disability Independence Group and The Florida Bar administered an online survey of Florida lawyers with disabilities. The purpose was to gather demographics information, analyze barriers for lawyers with disabilities in their profession, collect information on accommodations and technical assistance; and ultimately, create a forum for the exploration of issues, strategies and recommendations to enhance the participation of attorneys with disabilities in Florida’s legal communities, in court and out of court.

Executive Summary - Disability Independence Group Report PDF document opens in new window

Disability Independence Group Report and Recommendations PDF document opens in new window

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[Revised: 12-07-2016]