Committee on Diversity and Inclusion Page

  • Image of coworkers
    Welcome to the Committee on Diversity and Inclusion
  • About the Committee

    The objectives of the Committee on Diversity and Inclusion are to promote and advance the full and equal participation of attorneys of color and other diverse attorneys in the New York State Bar Association and in all sectors and at every level of the legal profession through research, education, fostering involvement and leadership development in NYSBA and other professional activities, and to promote knowledge of and respect for the profession in communities that historically have been excluded from the practice of law.

    The Committee shall also foster the development of, monitor progress of and report on diversity initiatives of the Association, as well as partner with the Sections to continue to pursue enhanced diversity and inclusion in the Association, including among the leadership of the Association.

    In conducting its work, the Committee shall consult with and engage Association leaders, other entities and individuals, including Sections of the New York State Bar Association;the New York State Conference of Bar Leaders; the Committee on Leadership Development; the Committee on Women in the Law; the Committee on Civil Rights; the Committee on Disability Rights; the Committee on LGBT People and the Law; the Law, Youth & Citizenship Program; minority and women’s bar associations; and others with an interest in the Committee’s mission and activities.

    A committee roster can be found here. Download the committee history here.

    Sandra Buchanan
    Sandra Buchanan, Chair

  • Diversity Trailblazer Award


    To honor exceptional efforts to promote the full and equal participation of diverse people at all levels of the legal profession.

    Contact: Minika Udoko

    2018 Call for Nomination Form

    Deadline: September 27, 2017

    Date Presented: Monday, January 22, 2018

    Award Criteria: New York attorneys, whether practicing or not, are eligible. 

    Prize Awarded: Crystal vase with inscription

    Past Recipients: 

    2017 Hon. Sheila Abdus-Salaam
    2017 Barbara Finkelstein, Esq.
    2017 Hon. Denny Chin
    2016 Christopher S. Auguste 
    2015 Tracy L. High
    2014 Darryl M. Gibbs
    2013 Lillian M. Moy
    2012 Hon. Jenny Rivera
    2012 Paul T. Williams, Jr.
    2012 Joseph Maron Hanna
    2011 Hon. Theodore Jones
    2011 Sharon Y. Bowen
    2010 Leonard M. Baynes
    2009 Laurie Robinson
    2008 Taa Grays
    2007 Carol A. Robles-Roman
    2006 Hon. George Bundy Smith
    2006 Hon. George Leighton
    2006 Hon. Carmen Beauchamp Ciparick

  • Recent Programs and Events

    Legal Developments in Transgender Rights

    Disrupting Implicit Bias to Advance Diversity and Inclusion: Practical Steps to Counter the Effects of Implicit Bias in the Legal Profession

    The 2017 Constance Baker Motley Symposium  

    A panel of past Diversity Trailblazer Awardees held a discussion on the progress of achieving diversity within the legal profession

    An Examination of Judicial Diversity in New York State

    The 2016 Constance Baker Motley Symposium: The Impact of Implicit Bias on Lawyers and the Legal Profession

    The Committees on Civil Rights and Diversity & Inclusion sponsored this program during The New York State Bar Association's 139th Annual Meeting.  Whether you are a criminal defense attorney, judge, law school clinician, legal services attorney or the managing partner of a major law firm, implicit bias affects you every day. This program demonstrated implicit or unconscious bias so all lawyers understand how it impacts our work. A few specific views of bias in our profession were explored: Are law schools preparing lawyers who have awareness of the impact of bias? How can implicit bias affect setting bail or jury deliberations? When do we see implicit bias in the courtroom? How can we overcome the impact of bias in law firm employment determinations including promotion and partnership?