Diversity and inclusion initiatives can easily lose traction because of a crisis. Recalling the years before the Great Recession, Joel Stern, the CEO of Chicago-based National Association of Minority & Women Owned Law Firms, said legal departments were beginning to survey their law firms on diversity and inclusion efforts.

During that time he served as an in-house attorney at Accenture, which began a diversity and inclusion program, and noted companies such as DuPont were also putting diversity and inclusion initiatives in place.

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