Colin Powell, former Secretary of State
Other Groups Addressing Diversity in the Courts
ABA Commission on Racial and Ethnic Diversity in the Profession
Founded in 1986, the Commission works to achieve a multi-ethnic, multicultural profession conscious and appreciative of difference and blind to prejudices. It sponsors research, serves as clearinghouse for data on minorities in the legal profession, and sponsors a minority judicial clerkship program with the ABA Judicial Division.
ABA Judicial Division's Standing Committee on Minorities in the Judiciary
Founded in 1987, the Committee provides a catalyst to promote equal participation of minorities in the profession through educational experiences, outreach opportunities and numerous publications. It publishes the Directory of Minority Judges of the United States, sponsors judicial outreach programs to give minority judges a chance to get to know one another, works to provide minority law students with clerking opportunities, and helped produce a videotape-"Bias In The Courtroom" videotape-used in many judicial education programs to help judges recognize and avoid the adverse effects of bias in the judiciary.
The Gay & Lesbian Victory Institute works to achieve full equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people by building, supporting, and advancing a diverse network of LGBT public leaders. Through its training and professional development programs, the Victory Institute assists hundreds of individuals who go on to influential careers in politics, government, business and advocacy each year. Many of the Victory Institute’s trainees join the more than 1,000 openly LGBT elected and appointed officials now serving around the world.
The Greenlining Institute's mission is to empower communities of color and other disadvantaged groups through multi-ethnic economic and leadership development, civil rights and anti-redlining activities. The Institute's Claiming Our Democracy Program is building a multi-ethnic, pro-democracy movement for campaign finance reform as a civil rights issue, and working to educate minority and low-income communities on the discriminatory impacts of the current campaign finance system.
Hispanic National Bar Association (HNBA)
Founded in 1972, the HNBA represents the interests of over Hispanic American attorneys, judges, law professors, and law students in the United States and Puerto Rico. Its primary objectives include increasing professional opportunities for Hispanics in the legal profession, including judicial appointments. The HNBA sponsors programs to increase the number of minority law school students and support them with scholarships. It has a permanent Judicial Appointments Committee.
The Infinity Project’s mission is to increase the gender diversity of the federal bench to ensure the quality of justice in the Eighth Circuit.The Infinity Project raises public awareness for the importance of gender equity on the bench and the availability of qualified women candidates; engages senators and other politicians on gender equity and the need for a female Eighth Circuit judge; and serves as a clearinghouse for candidates interested in serving on the Eighth Circuit bench. It is affiliated with the University of Minnesota's Center on Women and Public Policy.
Lambda Legal's Fair Courts Project project seeks to educate the LGBT and HIV-affected communities about the proper role of the judiciary, the importance of judicial fairness and the need to encourage people across the nation to take action to support judicial fairness. The Fair Courts Project provides tools and messaging to counter harmful partisan attacks on the courts that threaten LGBT and HIV-related civil rights.
The LCLD, which was formed in May 2009, is an organization of corporate chief legal officers and law firm managing partners dedicated to creating a truly diverse legal profession. Their mission is to continue the work of the "Call to Action" initiative by having our organizations hire, retain, promote and engage the best talent. A critical and necessary element of having the best talent is having diverse talent.
League of Women Voters of the United States “Safeguarding Democracy: Quest for a More Diverse Judiciary”
The League of Women Voters has worked nationwide to promote fair and impartial courts for over ten years. The League’s current initiative focuses on encouraging diversity on the bench through year-long education campaigns in key states, including Kansas and South Carolina, as well as collaboration with the Justice at Stake diversity pilot project in Washington and forthcoming states.
Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law
Formed in 1963, Lawyers' Committee's primary mission is to secure, through the rule of law, equal justice under law. The Lawyers' Committee is working to integrate the work of civil rights groups and minority lawyers with the movement for fair and impartial courts. They will publish Judicial Selections and Bias: A Dilemma for Judicial Independence, dealing with obstacles confronting minority lawyers who deal with judicial elections and the appointments process.
The Minority Corporate Counsel Association, Inc. (MCCA) was founded in 1997 to advance the hiring, retention, and promotion of diverse attorneys in legal departments and the law firms that serve them. MCCA accomplishes its mission through the collection and dissemination of information about diversity in the legal profession.
Minority Law Journal
Founded in 1996, the Minority Law Journal provides a forum for the exchange of ideas on the application of diversity in the legal workplace. Its well-informed coverage of issues and efforts to promote the cause provides readers with firsthand accounts of what works and what doesn't work in firms, corporations, agencies and public interest groups across the nation.
Founded in 1970, the Native American Rights Fund (NARF) is the oldest and largest nonprofit law firm dedicated to asserting and defending the rights of Indian tribes, organizations and individuals nationwide. NARF's practice is concentrated in five key areas: the preservation of tribal existence; the protection of tribal natural resources; the promotion of Native American human rights; the accountability of governments to Native Americans; and the development of Indian law and educating the public about Indian rights, laws, and issues.
National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA)
Founded in 1988, NAPABA advocates for the legal needs and interests of the Asian Pacific American community. It work includes efforts to increase the diversity of the judiciary. It has a permanent Judiciary Committee.
National Association of Women Judges (NAWJ)
Founded in 1979, the National Association of Women Judges (NAWJ) was created to ensure equal justice and access to the courts for all including women, youth, he elderly, minorities, the underprivileged, and people with disabilities; providing judicial education on cutting-edge issues of importance; developing judicial leaders; increasing the number of women on the bench in order for the judiciary to more accurately reflect the role of women in a democratic society; and improving the administration of justice to provide gender-fair decisions for both male and female litigants.
National Bar Association (NBA)
Founded in 1925, the NBA is the nation's oldest and largest national association of predominately African-American lawyers and judges. Its Judicial Council worked with the Joint Center for Political Studies to compile Black Judges in the United States, the most comprehensive listing ever of African-American elected and appointed judges. The Council also worked with the American Judicature Society to compile first ever National Roster of Black Judicial Officials. During the Carter Administration, the NBA helped developed a judicial selection process to ensure meaningful gains for minority judges under the Omnibus Judgeship Act.
NCAI was established in 1944 in response to the termination and assimilation policies the US government forced upon tribal governments in contradiction of their treaty rights and status as sovereign nations. To this day, protecting these inherent and legal rights remains the primary focus of NCAI. The organization's mission includes protecting treaty and sovereign rights, and improving the quality of life for Native communities and people.
The National LGBT Bar Association is a national association of lawyers, judges and other legal professionals, law students, activists, and affiliates of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender legal organizations. The LGBT Bar promotes justice in and through the legal profession for the LGBT community in all its diversity.
Puerto Rican Legal Defense and Education Fund (PRLDEF)
PRLDEF works on behalf of Puerto Ricans and the wider Latino community to, among other things, attain full civic participation, engagement and empowerment and participation in a strong civil society that enjoys fully- developed community-based institutions. In 2002, it published the study "Opening the Courthouse Doors: The Need for More Hispanic Judges."