Grace Speights, an employment law partner at the D.C. office of Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, is one of a younger generation of minority partners in major D.C. firms who have stepped into firm management. She joined the firm in 1984 after clerking for Senior U.S. District Judge Aubrey Robinson Jr. and became a partner in 1991. Speights has been a member of the D.C. office’s management committee and was hiring partner between 1994 and 1998. She has also spoken out vigorously in favor of minority recruitment in law firms and has been active in judicial selection. She now serves as a member of the Federal Judicial Nominations Commission for the District.

Issues of diversity, in law firms, in corporate counsel posts, and on the bench, continue to attract considerable attention, as do a broad range of civil rights and equal employment opportunity issues. This week, Jonathan Groner, editor of, interviewed Speights via e-mail to discuss some of those issues. The following is a transcript of the interview.