Inaugural Award for Outstanding Leadership in Diversity and Inclusion Presented to Pennsylvania Bar Association Minority Bar Committee

HARRISBURG (May 11, 2015) - The Pennsylvania Bar Association Minority Bar Committee has received the inaugural Award for Outstanding Leadership in Diversity and Inclusion from the PBA Diversity Team. The award was presented during the PBA Annual Meeting held May 6-8 at the Sheraton Philadelphia Downtown Hotel.

The award recognizes a PBA entity for outstanding efforts, contributions or service to promote diversity and inclusion in the association's membership and for demonstrating commitment to and leadership in promoting full and equal participation in the legal profession.

Since 1989, the PBA Minority Bar Committee has annually hosted the PBA Minority Attorney Conference that addresses issues of paramount importance to the minority bar, including racial discrimination in the legal profession and justice system. The conference offers sessions providing continuing legal education credits as well as networking opportunities.

The committee also hosts an annual statewide Diversity Summit to provide a forum for lawyers, law firms, public officials, bar associations and public interest organizations to share approaches that foster diversity in the legal profession.

For more than twenty years, the committee has organized an annual Minority Law Day for underrepresented high school students interested in pursuing legal careers. The program provides students with information they need to prepare for college and law school.

The committee has submitted numerous proposals to the PBA Board of Governors and House of Delegates to shape the association's policy on immigration, affirmative action, the death penalty, workers' rights and civil rights.

The PBA Diversity Team works collaboratively with PBA leadership, staff and all other PBA-related groups and entities to promote and enhance existing diversity initiatives and to assist with creating new opportunities. The PBA Diversity Team was established in 2010 by recommendation of the PBA Diversity Task Force, as unanimously approved by the PBA Board of Governors.

Founded in 1895, the Pennsylvania Bar Association strives to promote justice, professional excellence and respect for the law; improve public understanding of the legal system; facilitate access to legal services; and serve the 27,000 lawyers who are members of the association.