The “D” in ADR stands for “dispute”… but that’s not enough. It needs also to stand for “diversity,” and right now we are far from that. As the CEO of the CPR Institute, I lead an organization comprising corporations, law firms, mediators and arbitrators. The call for diversity comes up all the time. Many took it up with a passion long before I became active in the ADR world. So what holds us back?

When I was a GC, I and many of my colleagues in companies across the country pressed law firms to focus on hiring and retaining diverse attorneys. I can’t say the law firm community hit it out of the park, but the combined force of all our supplier diversity programs made a difference. We knew the pressure and encouragement had to come from us and that the responsibility rested with the law firms.

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