METHODOLOGY: We surveyed 255 of the largest and highest-grossing firms in the country. We included the 250 biggest firms as ranked by The National Law Journal (with the exception of Adorno & Yoss, because the firm is an alliance of firms), as well as five firms that made The American Lawyer‘s Am Law 200, but didn’t make the NLJ 250. (The National Law Journal and The American Lawyer are both ALM publications.) A total of 209 firms reported ethnic data for this year’s Scorecard.
Firms are identified by the office with the largest concentration of attorneys. If a firm has no more than 45 percent of its attorneys in one region, it is considered national. If more than 40 percent of the attorneys are located outside the United States, the firm is designated international. Partner statistics include both equity and nonequity partners. Nonpartner figures include associates as well as special counsel, of counsel and other staff attorneys. “Other minorities” includes Native Americans and those attorneys who said they were multiracial. All figures are as of Sept. 30, 2006. Our view is that ethnic diversity is defined first and foremost in American terms. When you ask whether a firm is achieving ethnic diversity, you’re asking how well it’s doing in hiring minority U.S. citizens. That’s why, in collecting information for the Scorecard, we ask firms to count only their minority attorneys who are U.S. citizens. Then we divide that number by the number of attorneys at the firm who are U.S. citizens. (Both numbers include U.S. citizen attorneys who are based in non�U.S. offices.) If the firm does not track citizenship, minority numbers are based on attorneys in U.S. offices only. The result gives the percentage of a firm’s U.S. citizen attorneys who are members of ethnic minorities.
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