The American Bar Association (ABA) Commission on Disability Rights (the Commission) will honor Sidley with the 2019 “Champions for Disability Inclusion in the Legal Profession Award,” which recognizes a law firm or corporation that has made measurable progress in recruiting, retaining and advancing to leadership lawyers with disabilities. Michael Hatcher (Dallas) will accept the award on behalf of the firm at the Commission’s Reception for Lawyers with Disabilities on August 12, held during the ABA Annual Meeting.
The Commission selected Sidley for its commitment to building an inclusive culture that provides equal opportunities for lawyers and law students with disabilities. Guiding Sidley’s disability-inclusive initiatives is the Disability Diversity Alliance (the Alliance), which launched in 2017. The Alliance is an internal network of more than 90 lawyers with disabilities and those interested in disability-related matters who make recommendations on how to improve firm culture, practices and services for people with disabilities. Most recently, the Alliance launched an internal communications campaign that expressed the value of self-disclosure of disabilities, the processes for seeking accommodations and the firm’s support of all its lawyers. The number of students with disabilities recruited to join the firm’s summer associate program has also increased through Sidley’s engagement with on-campus affinity groups.