- Provides exposure to a broad range of issues and mentorship opportunities with senior leadership;
- Involves lawyers in committee project/program development and implementation;
- Enhances participants’ leadership, decision-making, and problem-solving skills; and
- Promotes and fosters the benefits of diversity and inclusion in the legal profession as a whole.
DLA participants will become members of a Section committee or task force, engage in substantive work, and be paired with a mentor from the Section’s experienced leaders. In addition, DLA representatives are expected to attend the Fall and Winter leadership meetings and the Section’s Annual Conference during each year of the Program. Maximum reimbursement is $2,000 per year per individual to attend these meetings.*
The 2019-2020 meeting details are as follows:
- Fall Leadership Meeting – Scottsdale, AZ, October 3–5, 2019
- Winter Leadership Meeting – Miami Beach, FL, January 16–18, 2020
- Section Annual Conference – Washington, D.C., May 6–8, 2020 (Registration fee waived; no reimbursement for this meeting)
*Reimbursement includes lowest available coach airfare, a per diem toward lodging, and ground transportation. The Section does not reimburse individuals who are entitled to reimbursement from their firms, employers, or a third party.
Each applicant must be:
- A practicing lawyer for at least five years;
A member of the ABA and the Section of Litigation for at least one full Bar year prior to application;
- A member of one of the underrepresented groups who practices litigation in a law firm, corporate entity, legal services organization, or government agency; and
- A member whose practice coincides 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 other applicable affinity bar group, being an active member of such organizations or groups is not a requirement.
Each applicant must complete an online application along with the following documentation:
- Three letters of recommendation;
- Cover letter describing why the applicant is interested in being a Diverse Leaders Academy participant; and
- Potential plans or thoughts for using the experience and “lessons learned” during the years that follow to support the Section in the future.
Number of Participants
The Program will select up to six (6) participants each year and fund their expenses up to the maximum reimbursement of $2,000* for up to two years, subject to revocation should any participant fail to fulfill the expectations set forth herein. After two years, a participant will be eligible to apply for open leadership positions, and will be considered on the same bases as all other applicants.
September 1, 2019 through August 31, 2021
The Diversity & Inclusion Committee Co-Chairs, Section Chair Elect, and the Associate Director will oversee the process by which applicants are selected. This Program focuses on cultivating and identifying lawyers with leadership potential. Successful candidates will demonstrate a history of bar involvement on the national, state, or local level, public service, and professional excellence.
Applicants will be notified no later than July 31, 2019.