Firm launches East Asian and South Asian affinity groups to promote diversity and inclusion

Internal networks to allow members to promote mentorship, trade of ideas, stronger relationships

Firm launches East Asian and South Asian affinity groups to promote diversity and inclusion
Blakes launches networks [email protected] and [email protected] for legal professionals of Asian heritage

Blake, Cassels and Graydon LLP has launched [email protected] and [email protected], new internal networks of legal professionals of Asian heritage seeking to serve as forums for members to trade ideas, to strengthen relationships and to promote mentorship.

“With the formalization of [email protected] and [email protected], the Firm takes further steps to ensure that everyone can see a path for themselves at Blakes and in the legal profession,” said Bryson Stokes, the firm’s managing partner, in a news release.

According to information from the firm’s website, [email protected] is an affinity group of lawyers and students of East Asian heritage and their allies aiming to encourage recruitment, retention, mentorship, professional development and advancement, as well as to foster connections to clients, non-profits, pro-bono organizations and the alumni network that serve or have ties with East Asian communities. Members will meet regularly to share information and to tackle issues significant to Asian communities.

[email protected] not only acts as a resource and a community for our lawyers, but we also engage with clients and other organizations that have ties to Asian communities,” said Kevin Rusli, Toronto-based partner and one of the co-founders of [email protected], in the news release.

“We aim to cultivate belonging, whether by mentoring young lawyers, supporting our colleagues to reach leadership positions or simply hosting open discussions,” said Linda Tu, Toronto-based partner and one of the group’s co-founders.

[email protected] is focused on ensuring that junior associates and law students of South Asian heritage can access mentorship from those in whom they can see themselves. The affinity group seeks to assist in encouraging a culture within the firm wherein members can envision their success and can access the resources to attain such success.

[email protected] presents exciting new opportunities to contribute to the recruitment, development and promotion of lawyers of South Asian heritage at the Firm,” said Paul Singh, Toronto-based partner and one of the co-founders of [email protected], in the news release.

Alyssa Shivj, Toronto-based partner and one of the group’s co-founders, said that “outreach and networking with the broader South Asian legal community will be key to these efforts — channels through which we can help build a more diverse industry.”

Membership in these groups is voluntary. All of the firm’s lawyers who want to promote a supportive workplace can attend the events hosted by these affinity groups, which are the most recent among the firm’s efforts to promote a more inclusive organization and legal industry. The firm’s other affinity groups are [email protected], [email protected] and [email protected]

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