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Bennett Jones LLP - Edmonton, Alberta

Diversity & Inclusion

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Please describe your diversity programs and initiatives Bennett Jones is a strong supporter of diversity in the workplace and our lawyers and staff are a reflection of Canada's diverse population. We are committed to providing a collegial work environment in which all individuals are treated with dignity and respect. We believe that valuing and enhancing diversity and inclusion will help us attract and retain the best talent, and better serve our clients' needs in an evolving global marketplace.

We are a proud member of the Law Firm Diversity and Inclusion Network (LFDIN), a network of Canadian law firms that work together to promote diversity and encourage a culture of inclusion in our firms and the broader legal profession. As a member of LFDIN, we practice and advance diversity and inclusion by:

- sharing ideas for the promotion of diversity and inclusion in recruitment, retention and advancement;
- working with Legal Leaders for Diversity, the Canadian Centre for Diversity and Inclusion, law departments, business leaders and professional associations in their efforts to advance diversity and inclusion;
- supporting outreach programs in law schools and the broader community; and
- promoting thought leadership and constructive dialogue on issues of diversity and inclusion.

We collaborate with, and our lawyers are actively involved in, affinity bar associations such as the South Asian Bar Association, the Canadian Bar Association of Black Lawyers, and the Federation of Asian-Canadian Lawyers.

In July 2020, Bennett Jones signed the BlackNorth Initiative Law Firm Pledge, committing to specific actions and targets designed to end anti-Black systemic racism.

We are also proud to be a member of the 30% Club of Canada, a community of business leaders committed to meaningful and sustainable gender balance in business leadership.

Three of the nine members of Bennett Jones' Partnership Board of Directors are women and three members are from racial backgrounds other than Caucasian. The Board of Directors is responsible for the overall operation of the firm. The Lead Director of the Board is female, and this role was previously held by a woman as well. Our current Lead Director is also the leader of our firm's largest department, Toronto corporate. Women lead three of our six offices as managing partners, and two of the three are of racial backgrounds.

Bennett Jones' Senior Management team as been run for 16 consecutive years exclusively by women (CAO, CFO, CMO). The team leads the non-lawyer component of the firm, comprising approximately of 600 people. All of the other administrative groups at the firm are led by women.

Some of the initiatives and training in our Calgary office include:

- bringing in speakers who are experts on diversity and inclusion for learning sessions with our lawyers and staff;
- training on unconscious bias for those involved in recruitment and hiring;
- new parent coaching for associates; and
- sponsorship of OUTlaw at law schools.