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Diversity: Goldberg Segalla LLP

 



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            Goldberg Segalla LLP

Diversity at Goldberg Segalla LLP


 

DIVERSITY
Diversity for success. Goldberg Segalla has been lauded for its commitment to diversity. We believe a diverse work environment — one that brings together a wide range of perspectives, cultures, and experiences — enhances our ability to represent our clients successfully and benefits the greater business community. We continually develop relationships with law schools and diversity-focused associations, and we are proud to have been recognized by national, regional, and local organizations for implementing initiatives that make a difference.
Leadership and Action
Our commitment to diversity is led by our Diversity Task Force, a team of partners and associates from throughout the firm’s various offices. These individuals share a strong commitment to increasing the firm’s diversity, and they use their unique experiences and backgrounds to support and advance that goal. The Diversity Task Force meets regularly to create programs, schedule events, establish diversity initiatives, set long-term goals, and develop the strategy to recruit and retain people from diverse backgrounds. The Task Force promotes its commitment to diversity both inside and outside of the firm, including efforts to increase diversity in the wider legal and business communities.
Goldberg Segalla’s Diversity Task Force is led by Joseph M. Hanna, a partner in our Buffalo office. Mr. Hanna is the founder of numerous diversity initiatives in various organizations and outreach programs, serves on numerous diversity-related committees, and is a frequent author and speaker on diversity. He is a past President of the Minority Bar Association of Western New York (MBAWNY) and has been recognized for his diversity- and community-related accomplishments with the Diversity Trailblazer Award and the Outstanding Young Lawyer Award from the New York State Bar Association, the Community Service Award from the Defense Research Institute, the Community Leader Award from the National Federation for Just Communities of Western New York, the Diversity Excellence Award from the Buffalo Niagara Human Resource Association, and the Value Award for Diversity from Leadership Buffalo.
In the summer of 2011, Goldberg Segalla proudly welcomed the first interns to join a law firm through a formal Diversity Clerkship Program that was conceived by Mr. Hanna while he served as President of the MBAWNY. The program was developed in collaboration with the MBAWNY and the SUNY Buffalo Law School to provide opportunities for minority UB Law students to gain firsthand experience in the legal system. Since it was launched in 2011, the program has placed more than 50 students in clerkships in area courts as well as in several area law firms, with more judges and law firms asking to participate every day. It provides participants with an in-depth look at the legal process and the interaction between the bench and the bar that they would not otherwise get. At our firm, a dedicated team of two partners monitors the work of these law clerks and ensures they obtain valuable experience to help develop important legal research, writing, case management, and client service skills critical to their long-term success. It earned the firm the 2012 George B. Vashon Innovator Award from the Minority Corporate Counsel Association (MCCA) in the category of Pipeline Initiatives.
We are also proud to sponsor Success in the City, an annual diversity networking event that brings together diverse individuals to promote diversity, create mentor-protégé relationships, and facilitate recruiting opportunities in law and business. The inaugural 2011 event drew nearly 500 political and business leaders, legal professionals, and students. Success in the City has influenced the development of similar programs nationwide and has been replicated in Baltimore, Cleveland, Birmingham, and Dallas.
Melanie S. Wolk, special counsel in our Rochester office, was installed in May 2013 as the 31st President of the Greater Rochester Association for Women Attorneys (GRAWA), an organization dedicated to promoting the advancement of women in society and in the legal profession. Melanie authors a monthly President’s Message column for The Daily Record in which she discusses various issues impacting diversity and the legal community.
Our firm is committed to spreading the message throughout the broad legal and business communities that embracing diversity contributes to greater overall success. We conduct training sessions for in-house counsel at Fortune 500 corporations on increasing and promoting diversity.  Our attorneys have authored articles and delivered presentations on diversity for various legal organizations, including the Defense Research Institute and the American Bar Association, and our efforts and accomplishments in this area have been profiled in publications such as Business First, the Buffalo Law Journal, and the New York State Bar Association's State Bar News.
Partnerships
Goldberg Segalla is proud to be a member of the Minority Corporate Counsel Association (MCCA) Firm Affiliate Network, which was created by the MCCA to assist and acknowledge law firms that are committed to advancing diversity and inclusion in the legal profession. We are also proud of the fact that the MCCA honored us with its 2012 Innovator Award (see above). 
We are also a member of the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD), a national organization of leaders in law firms and corporate legal departments dedicated to creating a truly diverse legal profession.
We support the diversity efforts of numerous organizations, including: 
  • American Bar Association
  • Asian American Bar Association of New York
  • Columbian Lawyers Association
  • Defense Research Institute
  • Federal Bar Association
  • Korean American Association of Greater New York
  • League of First Nations
  • Minority Bar Association of Western New York
  • National Bar Association
  • Native American Rights Fund
  • National Association of Asian American Professionals
  • National Congress of American Indians
  • New York State Bar Association
  • Seneca Free Trade Association
  • SUNY Buffalo Law School
  • Women’s Bar Association
Our attorneys serve in diversity leadership roles in several of these organizations. For example, in addition to recently serving as President of the Minority Bar Association of Western New York, Mr. Hanna holds numerous diversity-focused chair or liaison positions at the Defense Research Institute. He has actively been promoting diversity for over seven years — since he began practicing law. Mr. Hanna currently serves as the National Chair of the ABA’s Minority Trial Lawyer Committee as well as the ABA’s Special Committee on Human Rights. He is spreading the message of diversity not only throughout the Western New York community, but into others as well.
Our outreach efforts led to the creation of a comprehensive database of more than 500 minority law organizations throughout the United States. Contact between these organizations takes place in anticipation of bringing CLE and legal programs together. This group of minority bar associations includes both local and national organizations, such as: 
  • National Association of Women Lawyers
  • National Association of Muslim Lawyers
  • Hispanic National Bar Association
  • National Asian Pacific American Bar
  • Black Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles
  • South Asian Bar Association of Philadelphia
  • Vietnamese American Bar Association of North Carolina
A Talented and Diverse Team
Goldberg Segalla’s culture is one that values team-spiritedness, collegiality, and interpersonal harmony within our working community. We are a firm that believes in diversity in the workplace, and we are proud to offer a professional and positive work environment for each and every member of our team.
Goldberg Segalla is committed to an equal employment opportunity for all individuals and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation or any other classification, as protected by federal, state, or local law. Equal employment opportunity extends to all personnel practices.
Diversity is further evident within our firm through the many languages and dialects our team speaks, including Arabic, Croatian, French, Greek, Hebrew, Hindi, Italian, Korean, Malayalam, Mandarin, Marathi, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Tagalog, Tamil, and Thai.
Diversity Matters — Join the Conversation
If you have questions regarding any of the firm’s diversity initiatives or would like to discuss ideas regarding increasing diversity in the legal profession, please contact Mr. Hanna (716.566.5447;jhanna@goldbergsegalla.com) or another member of our Diversity Task Force: