Bracewell is committed to the goals of diversity and inclusiveness – we are One Bracewell. We believe that a diverse work force makes us stronger, enhancing the value we provide to our clients and the communities in which we live. Bracewell attorneys know that creativity, cooperation and mutual respect are the natural result of an environment in which individual contributions are valued.
Bracewell’s Diversity & Inclusion Committee develops firm-wide diversity strategies and policies which are used to guide the implementation of existing programs and the creation of new strategic initiatives, with a strong focus on recruitment, retention, promotion, community outreach and communication.
The committee consists of partners and associates, including management committee members, hiring partners and section leaders, who are dedicated to Bracewell’s objective of fostering a work environment enriched by persons of all backgrounds:
David Ball, Partner, New York
Leslie Selig Byrd, Partner, San Antonio
Brad Chin, Partner, Houston
Bryan Dumesnil, Partner, Houston
Yvonne Ho, Partner, Houston (Co-Chair)
Ryan Holcomb, Partner, Houston
Jarvis Hollingsworth, Partner, Houston (Co-Chair)
Jonathan Leatherberry, Partner, Dallas
Kirk Morgan, Partner, Washington, DC
Vivian Ouyang, Senior Counsel, New York
Victoria Ozimek, Partner, Austin
Serena Rwejuna, Associate, Washington, DC
Britt Steckman, Associate, Washington, DC
Jeffery Vaden, Partner, Houston
Lauren West, Associate, Dallas
Richard Whiteley, Partner, Houston
Stacianne Wilson, Associate, Houston
Bracewell actively supports organizations to promote diversity both inside and outside of the firm. These organizations include:
- Asian American Bar Association
- Dallas Bar Foundation, Sarah T. Hughes Diversity Scholarship
- Hispanic Bar Association
- Hispanic Bar Association Austin
- Houston Community College Black History Gala
- JL Turner Legal Association
- Lambda Legal
- Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD)
- LGBT Bar Association of Greater New York
- National Black Law Students Association (NBLSA)
- New York University School of Law Minority Student Organizations
- South Asian Bar Association
- Texas Diversity Council
- Texas Minority Counsel Program
- The University of Texas School of Law Minority Student Organizations
- University of Houston Law Center Minority Student Organizations
- Vanderbilt Law School Minority Student Organizations
Whether professional or charitable, involvement in community organizations is a priority for Bracewell and our lawyers. The firm and our employees offer time, resources and professional services to many professional, civic, charitable and cultural endeavors. Bracewell has been recognized by local and national organizations for making diversity and inclusion an integral part of its work environment.
Bracewell’s lawyers have been appointed to leadership positions with a wide variety of organizations, which is a testament to Bracewell’s dedication and commitment to inclusion throughout the community.
- Derrick Mitchell (Houston) was appointed to Texas Southern University Board of Regents by Governor Greg Abbott and served as former chairman;
- Victoria Garcia (San Antonio) serves on the board of directors for Port San Antonio;
- Barron Wallace (Houston) serves as vice president of the Houston Parks Board;
- Janice Davis (Dallas) serves on the board of directors, finance and executive committees for Dallas CASA;
- Kevin Ewing (Washington, DC) serves as a board member for AmericaSpeaks, a national organization devoted to fostering public participation in government decision-making;
- Dee Martin (Washington, DC) is president of the board of directors for Calvary Women’s Services an organization that offers housing, health, education and employment programs that empower homeless women.
- Serena Rwejuna (Washington, DC) was elected to serve as vice president for the DC Chapter of the American Association of Blacks in Energy (AABE) for the 2017-2019 biennium.
COMMUNITY VOLUNTEER PROJECTS
In observance of the national Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service, each year the Diversity & Inclusion Committee hosts a firm-wide Day of Service. Bracewell employees and their families are invited to participate in giving back to the community. This year, each office served the following organizations:
Austin – Central Area Food Bank of Texas
Connecticut – HARC
Dallas – The Family Place/George Bannerman Dealey Montessori
Houston – Houston Food Bank
New York – Unleashed
San Antonio – San Antonio Food Bank Community Garden
Seattle – Youthcare’s James W. Ray Orion Center
Washington, DC – Martha’s Table
Bracewell’s success ultimately depends on developing exceptional legal talent. The firm is committed to attracting and retaining the finest lawyers from all backgrounds. Through numerous scholarship and fellowship opportunities, Bracewell works to increase the pool of racially and ethnically diverse legal talent. Moreover, by playing an active role in this initiative, Bracewell increases its visibility among candidates at an early stage in their legal careers, thereby strengthening its recruiting efforts.
BRACEWELL LAW PREVIEW SCHOLARSHIP
Bracewell has partnered with Law Preview to provide the Bracewell Law Preview Scholarship. This partnership provides scholarships to racially and ethnically diverse candidates who have been accepted into law school at the University of Houston Law Center, Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law and Vanderbilt Law School. Law Preview is the nation’s largest law school preparation course for incoming law students and teaches students what to expect and how to succeed in law school.
DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION FELLOWSHIP PROGRAM
Bracewell developed its Diversity & Inclusion Fellowship for several of its domestic offices. This program identifies stellar racially and ethnically diverse 1L law school students to spend four weeks at Bracewell and four weeks at a client. The Fellowship provides an opportunity for candidates to gain a variety of experiences during their summer employment, while also strengthening Bracewell’s relationships with clients who are equally committed to diversity and inclusion.