Volume 18, Number 2
March 2001


Embracing Diversity

Patrick G. Goetzinger

T he General Practice, Solo & Small Firm Division (GPSSFS) of the American Bar Association enthusiastically embraces the concept of diversity as a strength for the Section. This statement of purpose leads off the diversity plan recently adopted by the Section (portions reprinted in italics). The Section embraces its commitment to the goal of diversity with vigor. That vigor is directly in proportion to the energy brought to the Section by Pamila Brown, the chief architect of the Section’s diversity plan. We are privileged to have Pamila introduce this issue of GPSolo, which is a "Best of ABA Sections" special issue and features several articles that either address diversity themes or are written by lawyers from diverse backgrounds.

Diversity in our membership brings a variety of unique and valuable skills and perspectives to the Section. In its own informational way, Best of ABA Sections delivers diversity to Section members with every issue. In addition to the normal mix of articles on subjects that routinely appear in Best of ABA Sections, this issue features articles from Goal IX, published by the Commission on Racial and Ethnic Diversity, and Perspectives, published by the Commission on Women in the Profession. We are pleased to provide you with the opportunity to give thoughtful consideration to publications that may not have yet found their way to your normal reading pile.

We (GPSSFS) recognize, however, that the Section cannot expect to make great strides in achieving diversity in its membership without a demonstrated commitment to achieving diversity in its leadership ranks and in its committees. This issue of GPSolo is only one of many Section efforts to implement the diversity plan. Pamila’s introduction and The Chair’s Corner reveal other actions of the Section. Chair Wynn Gunderson, Chair-Elect George Ripplinger, other Section officers, and the Section’s Council have embraced the plan and its implementation with enthusiasm. As you reflect on the lawyers you favor working with, the clients you enjoy representing, and the issues you find challenging, I’ll wager that variety is a prime factor in making each a favorite. If you would like to assist the Section in its diversity objectives, let us know. You’ll find the same appeal in advancing diversity as you do in pursuing variety.

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