New ABA Leadership Program Will Promote Diversity and Inclusion in the Profession with Unique Mentorship Opportunities

Section of Litigation Issues Call for Applications

CHICAGO, July 19, 2012 — The _ Section of Litigation is launching a Leadership Fellows Program aimed at developing a more diverse and inclusive pipeline of future section leaders and providing mentoring opportunities for lawyers in underrepresented groups such as racial/ethnic minorities, persons with disabilities, and lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender persons.

In addition to enhancing leadership, decision-making and problem-solving skills, the program’s primary objectives are to attract, retain and develop talented, diverse lawyers for leadership roles within the section.

“Leadership Fellows will receive exposure to a broad range of issues and mentorship opportunities with senior leadership and will be involved in our projects and programs,” said incoming chair William R. Bay, partner at Thompson Coburn in St. Louis. “It is part of our continuing commitment to ensure equal opportunity in the profession and develop future leaders.”

An applicant must be a member of the ABA for at least one full bar year and a member of one of the underrepresented groups who practice litigation in a law firm, corporate entity or government agency. The applicant’s practice must coincide with the work of a substantive committee of the section.  While favorable consideration is given to applicants who are active members of a national bar association for lawyers of color or a pertinent affinity bar group, being an active member of such groups is not a requirement.

Up to 10 participants will be selected for the two-year program, which includes an assigned mentor, substantive committee work and attendance at section leadership meetings.

Fellows will be chosen on the basis of their leadership potential and demonstrated history of public service, professional excellence, and national, state or local bar involvement.

For more information, go to:

The application deadline is Aug. 16, 2012.

The Section of Litigation is the ABA’s largest section with nearly 60,000 members with a passion for the practice of litigation, the profession and public service.

With nearly 400,000 members, the _ is the largest voluntary professional membership organization in the world.  As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law.

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