Diversity & Inclusion
At Shearman & Sterling, we are committed to attracting, retaining and advancing a diverse population of top lawyers and professionals. We understand the importance of embracing cultural and personal differences in order to work successfully in today’s global marketplace. We encourage our lawyers and business services professionals to bring their diverse backgrounds – of different cultures, ethnicities, orientations and beliefs – to Shearman & Sterling and to leverage their unique viewpoints to help tackle the most sophisticated legal matters.
We believe that by providing opportunities for every individual to thrive, we create an environment at Shearman & Sterling where people feel valued, engaged and eager to contribute to the success of our business. As we work to recognize, foster and develop talent at all levels, we enhance the firm and create the strongest possible global platform.
To this end, Shearman & Sterling has a long-standing Diversity & Inclusion Committee which designs and implements initiatives to promote awareness and encourage open dialogue on matters of diversity and inclusion. For more than 20 years, the Committee has been supporting diversity projects and professional events, both internally, as well as in the broader legal community.
Within the firm, diversity and inclusion programming is woven into our professional development curriculum at all levels. It is included in the curriculum for first-year and summer associates, in global associate leadership conferences, as well as in the annual new partner orientations. In addition, our six associate-led inclusion networks help to foster a sense of community and build awareness through firm-sponsored programs that serve to educate and inform.
In the legal community, Shearman & Sterling is an active sponsor of organizations and programming that promote the inclusion, advancement and professional development of historically under-represented groups. As such, the firm collaborates with clients, nonprofit organizations, bar associations, community groups and pipeline programs that share our commitment to helping people of all backgrounds achieve academic and professional excellence. Additionally, through our pro bono work, the firm partners with a variety of organizations that advocate on behalf of underserved communities of color and other vulnerable groups.
Shearman & Sterling works to advance diversity and inclusion within the legal profession as a whole and as a firm by actively supporting pipeline programs, organizations and initiatives that promote the inclusion, advancement and professional development of historically under-represented groups. Key initiatives include:
Legal Outreach and N.J. LEEP pipeline programs – encourage high school students from underserved communities to excel through intensive legal and academic programming
Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD)/ 1L Shearman & Sterling Scholars Program – provides 1L students with an opportunity to gain valuable experience and mentorship by participating in the firm’s summer associate program, and includes access to noteworthy panel discussions and networking opportunities at the annual LCLD Summit
Sponsors for Educational Opportunity (SEO) – provides talented incoming law school students of color with intensive academic prep and a hands-on look at the practice of law through summer internships at top law firms
Practicing Attorneys for Law Students (PALS) –enhances the skills and career development of minority law students and early career attorneys
Institute for Inclusion in the Legal Profession (IILP) – focuses on promoting diversity and inclusion in the legal profession through research and outreach
Lawyers for Empowerment and the Advancement of Diversity (LEAD) – provides increased mentorship and client networking opportunities through a mentoring initiative that pairs diverse law firm associates with mentors at financial institutions
Shearman & Sterling Inclusion Networks – foster a sense of community within the firm and encourage colleagues to meet, share ideas and support one another as they advance within the firm; these associate-led networks host programs throughout the year that help to contribute to Shearman & Sterling’s inclusive environment
Shearman & Sterling emphasizes its support for a diverse workforce through its support for internal inclusion networks. Formed and led by associates, these networks seek to share ideas on professional and business development, to offer guidance and support to one another as these lawyers advance within the firm, and to build relationships with members of the broader legal and business communities.
Alianza LatAm – encourages professional development, supports the Latino community and promotes the growth of opportunities in Latin America
AVALANCHE (Association of Various Asia-interested Lawyers Aligned for Non-discrimination, Community, Honor and Excellence) – promotes mentorship, community outreach and cultural awareness for Asian-heritage and Asia-interested attorneys throughout the firm
BAD (Bay Area Diversity Group) – provides a forum for the firm’s Bay Area attorneys to implement and support locally-targeted diversity initiatives in the firm's offices and the greater Bay Area legal community
BLAQUE (Black Lawyers Aligned in the Quest for Excellence) – focuses on mentoring, networking and professional development initiatives to support the recruitment and advancement of Black attorneys
Sterling Pride – provides leadership and support for an inclusive and respectful environment for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender colleagues, and serves as a catalyst for candid dialogue on issues of concern to the LGBTQ community; the Sterling Pride Ally initiative engages a network of straight allies to help support and advance an inclusive environment
WISER (Women’s Initiative for Success, Excellence and Retention) – emphasizes mentorship, professional development and awareness for the firm’s women lawyers
Shearman & Sterling collaborates with diversity-related bar associations, committees and organizations around the globe that share our mission to increase diversity and inclusion in the legal profession.
Recent partnerships include:
Shearman & Sterling is committed to promoting diversity through all aspects of our firm—from our talented lawyers and staff to the suppliers we work with to deliver the products and services our clients expect from us. An important part of advancing these goals is our supplier diversity initiative, which ensures that diverse businesses are represented in our competitive selection process. We actively seek to establish relationships with these businesses, strengthen our supplier pool, and continually strive to expand our outreach to a broad range of suppliers with which we do business.
Eligible businesses include those that are qualified and certified in one or more of the following categories:
Thank you for your interest in working with Shearman & Sterling. If you are an eligible diverse business and would like to register:
Please note that registration as a diverse supplier or participation in this program does not guarantee that your business will receive a contract or a request for a bid from Shearman & Sterling. Further, it does not create any contractual relationship, actual or implied, between you and Shearman & Sterling.
Our London office is a signatory of the U.K. Law Society Diversity and Inclusion Charter. The purpose of the charter is to show a public commitment to promote the values of diversity and inclusion throughout our business. Whether through recruitment, retention, career progression, or training and development, we are committed to improving opportunities for people in the legal profession, regardless of their background or circumstances. Refer to our global pages above to find out more about our approach to Diversity & Inclusion.