BSCR is an open and accepting community, committed to diversity and inclusion within its family, and within the legal community as a whole. We believe it takes multiple perspectives to tackle legal and business problems for our clients. Drawing on the combined experiences of professionals who encompass a broad range of backgrounds and cultures strengthens our ability to interact with clients, negotiate with opposing counsel and persuade judges and juries. For the last several years, nearly 50 percent of BSCR’s new attorney hires have been women and minorities.
To foster our commitment to inclusiveness, our firm maintains a standing committee on diversity and inclusion to recruit employees of all backgrounds and to support the efforts of several minority and women’s legal organizations, both locally and nationally. The committee includes a member of every employee group in the firm, from owners and managers to attorneys and staff, and includes minorities and non-minorities.
In addition to conducting educational seminars on diversity issues within our firm, we help our attorneys thrive in the community. We support minority education initiatives from the high school to the law school level by providing internships to high school and college students and partnering with local student organizations offering scholarships to law students.
BSCR is committed to the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association Diversity Action Plan’s stated mission of continuing to recruit and retain diverse attorneys while fostering a culture within law firms that promotes acceptance and education. Our firm was one of the founders and an original signatory of the Plan in 2004, and continues to support the initiative, which hosts the Heartland Diversity Legal Job fair each year.
Our firm supports a variety of diversity events organized by other local bar associations, including the Association of Women Lawyers of Greater Kansas City, The Jackson County Bar Association, The Lawyers Association of St. Louis, and the Mound City Bar Association. Many of our attorneys have leadership roles or are otherwise actively engaged in these associations.
BSCR has been a member and an active participant of the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD) since its inception in 2009. Comprised of corporate chief legal officers and law firm managing partners, the LCLD’s objectives include the hiring, retention and promotion of diverse talent in the legal profession.
Our firm supports other national organizations with initiatives devoted to improving diversity and inclusion in the legal arena including, among others, the Human Rights Campaign, the ALFA International Women’s Initiative, and the Litigation Counsel of America Women’s and Diversity Initiative, with some of our attorneys having served in leadership roles.
Catherine Stevens is the Chair of our firm's Diversity & Inclusion Committee. Committee members include attorneys John Cowden, David Eisenberg, Jim Jarrow, Melesa Johnson, Meg Sterchi Lammert, Caroline Tinsley and staff Karen Griggs (Executive Director), Beverly Redd-Bates (Legal Administrative Assistant), Lori Rickman (Director of Marketing), and Charniece Rollie (Executive Assistant).