Mouledoux, Bland, Legrand & Brackett strives to be a diverse law firm. Our goal is to create and maintain an environment that welcomes and fosters mutual respect for different perspectives, backgrounds and life experiences regardless of gender, race, creed, color, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, age or disability. We are committed to ensuring that professional growth and advancement are based on capability and performance and recognize that a diverse workforce enriches our experiences and lends to our success. We value and support all who positively contribute to our practice and our community.
To this end, we have launched several initiatives to ensure that diversity, equity and inclusion are part of MBLB’s “DNA.” We will continue to work to achieve these goals and endeavor for steady progress toward social justice.
MBLB Committee for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
MBLB’s Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee members include members Alan Brackett, Mike Parks and Dan Sullivan along with associates Brandy Citizen, JoAnn Hymel and Alejandro Rodriguez. We are partnering with the Black Students Association to assist us in expanding our Law Clerk program for law students during both the school year and the summer, with an emphasis on candidates of diverse backgrounds. We are initiating an outreach program for undergraduate students attending local HBUs Dillard University and Xavier University, who may have an interest in entering the legal field. We will allow them to participate in internships with the firm to learn more about the practice of law.
MBLB’s Human Resources Director, Linda Castanza, participated in the 6th Annual Diversity & Inclusion Summit presented by the Louisiana Society for Human Resources, an affiliate of the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM). The Summit brought together human resource professionals, diversity practitioners, legal professionals and business, civic and community leaders from across the state to foster the discussion and action around Diversity, Equity & Inclusion in business.
The Leadership Council on Legal Diversity
MBLB has also joined the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD), an organization of more than 350 corporate chief legal officers and law firm managing partners—the leadership of the profession—who have dedicated themselves to creating a truly diverse U.S. legal profession. LCLD’s action programs are designed to attract, inspire and nurture the talent in society and within organizations, thereby helping a new and more diverse generation of attorneys ascend to positions of leadership.
Alan Brackett, managing member of MBLB, was accepted for membership in the LCLD in January 2021. Trevor Cutaiar was nominated by MBLB and accepted to the LCLD’s Fellows Program, designed for diverse, high-potential, mid-career attorneys at LCLD Member organizations. The year-long Fellows Program begins in March. The goal of this program is to provide Fellows with:
- Professional and Personal Development Opportunities
- Leadership Training
- Relationship-Building Opportunities
- Access to LCLD Members (Managing Partners and General Counsel)
Edward McAuliffe and Chris Prudhomme were nominated and accepted for LCLD’s Pathfinder Program. This six-month program will begin in May. The goal of this program is to provide Pathfinders with practical tools for developing and leveraging:
- Internal professional networks through relationship-building skills
- Foundational leadership skills
- An understanding of career development strategies applicable to both in-house and law firm practice
New Orleans Law Firms Diversity Committee
A positive outgrowth of the global pandemic in 2020 was the establishment of a group of managing partners of New Orleans law firms who joined together to discuss operational challenges of practicing law in a pandemic world and how to help the New Orleans community survive the impact of the almost complete shutdown of the city undertaken to protect the health and safety of those in our community.
As the concerns of the pandemic have begun to subside, a group began discussing issues of diversity, equity and inclusion in the practice of law. A new group has formed to advance issues of DE&I in the New Orleans legal community and MBLB is one of the original law firms in this effort.
MBLB AFFINITY Newsletter
MBLB is committed to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. Our Affinity Newsletter allows diverse voices and points of view to be shared, both within our firm and externally. The newsletter is intended to educate, particularly on historical diversity issues and their impact on or by the law. While these articles provide valuable perspective, they are not intended to espouse a position by the firm.
Hispanic-Americans have a long history in the United States, bringing significant impact to U.S. history, from colonization to the current millennium. To commemorate the traditions and cultural contributions that Hispanics have contributed, the Hispanic Heritage week was established and signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson in 1968.
Pride is certainly a celebration of the landmark cases that have affirmed the humanity of LGBT+ people, but there are still gains to be made at the local, state and national level.
In celebrating the achievements and advancements of women, we take this opportunity to recognize some of the female pioneers in the legal community, aside from Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Erin Brockovich, and Elle Woods.
Plessy v. Ferguson turned 125 years old. The landmark 1896 U.S. Supreme Court decision upheld the constitutionality of racial segregation under the umbrella of the “separate, but equal” doctrine. Plessy is a reminder of how far reaching holdings in our courts can be and are.