Committee on Minorities and Women in the Law

Mission Statement

It is the mission of the Committee on Minorities and Women in the Law (CMWL):

  • To educate the legal community and general public on issues relating to minorities and women in the practice of law;
  • To support and serve minority and women practicing attorneys and students, by advocating the retention and advancement of minority and women lawyers;
  • To develop strategies to broaden the legal opportunities for minority and women attorneys; and
  • To promote the "Commitment to Inclusion Goals for Increasing Minority and Woman Representation and Retention."

Commitment to Inclusion Goals

In 1992, CMWL surveyed legal employers within Arizona to determine minority and women participation, and the State Bar Board of Governors adopted CMWL's "Statement of Goals for Increasing Minority and Women Representation and Retention." Various legal employers became signatories to the Statement of Goals, and data was collected and studied from 1993 to 2003.  CMWL submitted its report on the Statement of Goals to the Board of Governors in April 2006.  From that report came many recommendations, including the hiring of a full-time Diversity Director for the State Bar and formation of a Bar Leadership Institute, which have since been adopted. Click here to view the April 2006 report.

In January 2009, the State Bar's Diversity Department sent letters to private and public law offices encouraging them to become Signatories to the Bar's Commitment to Inclusion Program.  The Program seeks to provide for full participation of all groups of people in the legal program and encourages law offices to follow guidelines describing best practices in hiring; retention; and promotion of minority, women and underrepresented groups of lawyers.  It was a project of the CMWL and endorsed by the Arizona Women Lawyers Associations, Arizona Black Bar Association, Los Abogados Hispanic Bar Association and Native American Bar Association.

Law office participation requires the completion of a short survey a well as providing the Bar with statistical information.  Fourteen law offices submitted information as of April 13, 2009.  Current Signatories include:  Ballard Spahr Andrews & Ingersoll LLP, Bowman and Brooke LLP, Bryan Cave LLP, Fennemore Craig PC, Gallagher & Kennedy PA, Gust Rosenfeld PLC, Kutak Rock LLP, Lewis and Roca LLP, Osborn Maledon PA, Perkins Coie Brown & Bain PA, Quarles & Brady LLP, Ryley Carlock & Applewhite PA, Snell & Wilmer LLP and Waterfall Economidis Caldwell Hanshaw & Villamana PC.


To view the original Statement of Goals, please click here.

For more information:

Elena Nethers
4201 N. 24th Street, Suite 100
Phoenix, AZ  85016-6266
602.340.7393