SGR is actively committed to diversity in recruiting, retention and advancement of all professionals and support staff.
At Smith, Gambrell & Russell, we recognize that attracting the widest array of talent enhances our ability to serve our clients and our communities. We are dedicated to providing a work environment where each person is valued for his or her perspectives, skills and talents, is treated respectfully, is able to communicate openly and is encouraged to develop to his or her full potential as a contributor to the success of the firm and the communities we serve.
Among the principles that guide SGR’s approach to diversity management is our recognition that diversity management is simply the right thing to do. In addition, diversity not only enhances our work environment, but also gives us a competitive edge.
To formalize our long-standing commitment to diversity, in March 2006 SGR formed a Diversity Council, comprised of 12 attorneys and staff members representing each of SGR’s five U.S. offices. Council membership is diverse across many attributes including gender, race and ethnicity, and sexual orientation. The Council meets regularly, including with firm management, to lead and guide the diversity management process with respect to firm policies and practices.
SGR recruits at a wide variety of law schools, including the law schools of several historically black universities. We participate in the Southeastern Minority Job Fair and the Minority Clerkship Program sponsored by the Atlanta Bar Association, and we maintain relationships with and sponsor events on behalf of minority student bar associations at local and regional law schools. But we recognize that it is not enough simply to get qualified minority law students “in the door”—instead, through formal and informal mentoring, training and other programs, we strive to foster an environment where all of our lawyers, including minority lawyers, can flourish and build a successful career.
Since the summer of 2006, more than 400 attorneys and staff members in SGR’s five U.S. offices have participated in formal diversity education and training under the direction of Roosevelt Thomas Consulting and Training. Diversity training is now an integral part of all new-hire orientation. We also have implemented ways to encourage open communication among all who work here—for example, through participation in a diversity survey and establishment of town hall meetings where issues that implicate our differences can be aired and solutions created.
The firm’s commitment to diversity includes its offering of domestic-partner benefits, the option of a non-partnership career track and the firm’s commitment to the Bright Horizons Day Care Center.
SGR financially supports and sponsors attorney membership in organizations such as the Georgia Association of Black Women Attorneys, the Gate City Bar Association, Atlanta Women In Business, the Atlanta Women’s Foundation, the Human Rights Campaign and the Stonewall Bar Association.
For more information, contact Dana Richens, Diversity Partner, at
(404) 815-3659 or email@example.com.