As we turned the calendar to 2017, Pullman & Comley's attorneys redoubled their diversity and inclusion efforts in the First Quarter of the year both within the firm and in the greater community.
Breaking New Ground
Lambda Legal – Pullman & Comley attorney John Stafstrom was named to the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors of Lambda Legal and co-chaired Lambda’s National Liberty Award Dinner. The Dinner honored LGBT advocates, activists and allies in the LGBT community’s fight for equality. This year’s dinner honored Larry Kramer for his work founding the “Gay Men’s Health Crisis” and “ACT UP” organizations and Javier Munoz from the Broadway show Hamilton, for the example he has set as an openly gay man living with HIV.
Sharpening Our Focus
The Impact of Implicit Associations on Businesses -- In January, as part of the firm’s annual partners’ retreat, Pullman & Comley’s Diversity and Executive Committees co-facilitated a presentation on the impact of implicit associations on businesses, which was very well-received. Our Diversity Committee is now offering to give its presentation to businesses that may benefit from learning about the financial impact of implicit associations. Please contact us if you feel that your business or organization may benefit from our presentation.
Martin Luther King, Jr. Annual Day of Service – This past Martin Luther King, Jr. day, Pullman & Comley attorneys partnered with the Bridgeport Rescue Mission to rehabilitate 11 rooms of supportive housing. The firm annually promotes an day of service on MLK day, where it encourages attorneys and staff to volunteer with a local non-profit organization on their day off.
(Pullman & Comley attorneys and staff enjoying lunch after their Martin Luther King, Jr. Annual Day of Service)
Hall School Mock Trial – Members of Pullman & Comley’s Diversity Committee joined with Yale New Haven Health Services to volunteer at Hall Elementary School to mentor and coach a 5th Grade mock trial team. In the case of United States v. Paul Bunyan, the students presented opening and closing statements, testimony and arguments. Connecticut Supreme Court Justice Richard Robinson presided over the mock trial, which took place at the Federal Courthouse in Bridgeport, Connecticut. The jury rendered a defense verdict, finding that Paul Bunyan and his Blue Ox were not negligent in cutting down trees and polluting natural waterways!
Diversity 1L Summer Associate Program – Pullman & Comley’s Diversity and Recruiting Committees worked with Yale New Haven Health Services’ Legal and Risk Services Department to interview, select and hire a first year law student to participate in our Diversity 1L Summer Associate Program. This program provides opportunities to minority law students to work in both a law firm and a business’ general counsel’s office. The summer association will split his time this summer working for Pullman & Comley and Yale New Haven Health Services’ Legal and Risk Services Department.
Volunteering with the Posse Foundation – Pullman & Comley attorneys – including Jess Grossarth, Bob Hinton, Mark Sommaruga, Jon Kaplan, Megan Carannante, Rob Morris and Retired Judge Lynda Munro – recently completed their two year term as volunteer career coaches with the Posse Foundation, where they provided career guidance to minority college students to assist with their post-graduation transition to the professional workforce.
Women’s Leadership Initiative -- In the first quarter of 2017, members of Pullman & Comley’s Women’s Leadership Initiative continued to meet regularly to discuss new initiatives, professional development and other topics. Members of the initiative are working on a variety of new collaborative endeavors with other businesses and organizations which serve to empower and educate women on the particular challenges that they face in the workplace. We will be hosting the 20th anniversary of our annual Women's Networking event on May 23, 2017 at the Black Rock Yacht Club in Bridgeport.
Pullman & Comley is proud to be a “gold” sponsor of Lawyers Collaborative for Diversity annual awards event on May 18th to be held at the UTC/Pratt & Whitney Aerospace Museum in East Hartford. In addition, please stay tuned for further information with respect to a Diversity Committee/Women’s Leadership Initiative event that will be taking place this fall.