Louisiana State Bar Association Diversity Statement

The Louisiana State Bar Association (LSBA) recognizes that achieving diversity in the legal profession is an evolutionary process that requires the Association's continued effort and commitment.

The LSBA is committed to diversity in its membership, Board of Governors, staff, House of Delegates, committees and all leadership positions. Diversity is an inclusive concept that encompasses race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, gender, age, sexual orientation and disability.

The LSBA is a richer and more effective Association because of diversity, as it increases our strengths, capabilities and adaptability. In addition, a diverse group of talented legal professionals is important to the success of law firms, law departments, public service organizations and other organizations that include attorneys.

Through increased diversity, the LSBA and its members can bring more varied perspectives, experiences, backgrounds, talents and interests to the practice of law and the administration of justice.

Diversity — Inclusion — Professionalism 

Latest Diversity News and Events

Professionalism Facilitators Training - April 8, 2017
On April 8, 2017, the Louisiana State Bar Association's Diversity Committee’s Integration Subcommittee held a Professionalism Facilitator Training Workshop at the Louisiana Bar Center in New Orleans, Louisiana. At this half-day workshop, attorneys increased their awareness of unconscious bias, discovered new ways to reduce bias, gained tools to promote diversity and inclusion, and boosted confidence in delivering effective CLE presentations.

Photo (L to R) Senior Facilitators
L to R: Kandace R. Hamilton, Tulane University; Troy N. Bell, Courington Kiefer & Sommers, L.L.C.; and I.J. Clark-Sam, Attorney at Law

Local Attorney Visits Students at Early Bard College - March 23, 2017
Diversity Committee member Adria Kimbrough (The Kullman Firm), spent the afternoon on March 23, 2017, speaking with students at the annual Bard Early College New Orleans Internship Fair. She was there to introduce and recruit the Bard students to the LSBA's Suit Up for the Future program, a free three-week legal institute, during which students attend an abridged law school session, field trips to law schools and courts, and an internship consisting of shadowing at area law offices and courts. For more information about Suit Up for the Future, please click here.

The Bard Early College program offers local students an opportunity to enroll in college credit-bearing courses in the Bard curriculum. Students complete the first year of a Bard education during their last two years in high school.

Photo:  Adria Kimbrough

Specialty Bars Reception - June 5, 2017
Join members of Louisiana specialty bars for an evening of networking at the Specialty Bars Reception, sponsored by the Greater New Orleans Louis A. Martinet Legal Society, the Louis A. Martinet Society Lake Charles Chapter, and the LSBA's Diversity Committee.  The event isscheduled from 5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. at Lumpy’s Wine Bar and Bottle Shop, 100 Baytowne Avenue, North Baytowne Wharf, FL 32550. To register for this free event, click here. To print the event flyer, please click here.

Anderson Cooper Examines NOLA Public Defenders' Refusal of Felony Cases
Faced with chronic underfunding for his too-small staff, Derwyn Bunton, chief public defender for New Orleans, made an unusual decision last year: The city’s public defenders are refusing felony cases such as rapes, robberies, and murders, as a form of protest. Anderson Cooper met with NOLA’s public defendersto discuss the crisis.  Click here for the full story.

Photo ID: Derwyn Bunton, chief public defender (Photo courtesy of CBS News)

Volunteer Opportunities for Attorneys - "Suit Up for the Future"
Each year the LSBA, in partnership with the Louisiana Bar Foundation and the Just the Beginning Foundation, hosts the Suit Up for the Future program, a FREE three-week legal institute, during which students attend an abridged law school session, field trips to law schools and courts, and an internship consisting of shadowing at area law offices and courts. The 2017 session will be held June 12 – June 30, 2017

The Suit Up for the Future program is a success because of the number of attorneys, firms, judges and organizations who volunteer their time and/or staff. We are asking you to consider one of the following ways that you could be a part of the 2017 Suit Up program:

Volunteer for one hour - During the three week session, attorneys are invited to volunteer their time from 12:00 - 1:00 to spend time talking with the Suit Up students. If you are interested in participating, please contact the Member Outreach and Diversity staff at diversity@lsba.org

Shadowing opportunities - During the second week of the Suit Up session, June 19-23, 2017, students are assigned to "shadow" attorneys at firms, courts, and organizations. This is a great opportunity for students to see for themselves what attorneys do on a daily basis; and to spend one-on-one time with attorneys in the workforce. If you or your firm would be interested in providing a shadowing opportunity for one or more Suit Up students, please contact us at diversity@lsba.org.

To learn more about the Suit Up for the Future program, please click here.

"Generational Differences" presented at Inn on the Teche - February 2, 2017
The LSBA DIversity Committee's Integration subcommittee presentated at the Inn on the Teche chapter (16th JD) of American Inns of Court meeting on February 2, 2017.  THe CLE presentation was titled "Generational Differences."

(L to R) LSBA Professionalism facilitators: Deidre D. Robert, Deputy Director of Litigation Division, Office of the Louisiana Attorney General; Micah J. Fincher, Jones Walker LLP; I.J. Clark-Sam, Attorney at Law.  Arlene D. Knighten, Executive Counsel, Louisiana Department of Insurance (not pictured)

BRBA Joint Meeting Recognizes Black History Month - February 15, 2017
The Baton Rouge Bar Association held its February Bar Luncheon February 15, 2017. The luncheon was a joint meeting of the BRBA, the Baton Rouge Association of Women Attorneys, the Baton Rouge Chapter of the Federal Bar Association, and the Greater Baton Rouge Louis A. Martinet Legal Society. The speaker at the luncheon was Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome, the first female elected mayor-president of East Baton Rouge Parish.

(L to R) Dean Thomas C. Galligan, Jr., LSU Paul M. Hebert Law Center; Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome; Chancellor John K. Pierre, Southern University Law Center.

LJC/NBA Annual Seminar March 2-5, 2017
Louisiana Judicial Council/NBA hosted its 19th Annual Meeting and Continuing Legal Education Seminar in Lake Charles, LA on March 2 – 5, 2017. Titled “Reassessing Our Judicial and Societal Roles,” Louisiana Judges attended CLEs, committee and business meetings, and concluded with a church service at Lake Charles’ Greater St. Mary Baptist Church.

New Orleans’ St. Augustine High School boasts a large number of alumni in the legal field. Several of St., Aug’s distinguished alumni gathered at the LJC/NBA Conference.

(L to R) Hon. Byron C. Williams Criminal District Court, New Orleans; Professor Raymond T. Diamond -LSU Paul M. Hebert Law Center, Baton Rouge; Justin Jack, law clerk for Chief Judge Ulysses Gene Thibodeaux, 3rd Circuit Court of Appeal, -Royce Duplessis -LA Supreme Court Special Counsel, New Orleans; Ezra Pettis, Jr., Delphin Law Offices, PLC, Lake Charles; Hon. Mike Bagneris, (Ret.) Orleans Civil District Court, New Orleans; Hon. Arthur L. Hunter, Jr., Orleans Criminal District Court, New Orleans.

Upcoming Local and Specialty Bar Events - 2017-18
Here is a list of upcoming local and specialty bar events for the 2016-2017 Bar year. Please check the list frequently - changes and updates will be added regularly. If you would like your bar organization's event listed, please let us know! Send an email to outreach@lsba.org with the event details (date, time, location).

View Schedule

Get Involved! Become an LSBA Professionalism Facilitator

Are you interested in:
  • Increasing your diversity knowledge and skills?
  • Boosting your confidence in delivering effective diversity and inclusion training?
  • Improving your understanding of stereotypes, prejudices and cultural differences?
  • Discovering new ways to reduce bias?
  • Helping others become more culturally competent?
  • Gaining tools to promote diversity and inclusion through training?

If so, you may want to consider becoming an LSBA Professionalism Facilitator. Facilitators are attorney volunteers that give of their time to educate others on promoting diversity and inclusion in the legal profession. If you are interested in joining us, please contact us at diversity@lsba.org.

Join the LSBA Diversity Signatories

The LSBA recognizes that achieving diversity and inclusion in the legal profession is an effort that requires the Association's continued effort and commitment.  Statewide judges, attorneys, firms, and organizations have joined the LSBA by signing the Statement of Diversity Principles, a commitment to foster diversity and inclusion.  If you, your firm or organization are interested in furthering diversity and inclusion in the legal profession, we encourage you to become a Diversity Signatory!  Simply sign the LSBA Statement of Diversity Principles and either email it (diversity@lsba.org) or fax it (504-566-0930) to the Member Outreach and Diversity Department. 

To date, the total number of Diversity Signatories is 356! Signatories includes:


  • Honorable Jules D. Edwards, III, 15th Judicial District Court, Div. "B"
  • Louisiana District Judges Association
  • Evans & Clesi, PLC
  • Louis J. Leo, Attorney at Law, APLC
  • Hammonds, Sills, Adkins & Guice, LLP
  • Paul M. Hebert Law Center, Lousiaiana State University


  • Hammonds, Sills, Adkins & Guice, LLP
  • Craig Cassagne Jr
  • The Woods Law Group, L.L.C.
  • Baton Rouge Bar Association

To read the LSBA Diversity Statement, approved by the LSBA Board of Governors and House of Delegates on January 12, 2008, please click here

Louisiana State Bar Association
601 St. Charles Avenue
New Orleans, LA 70130
(800) 421-LSBA(5722) / (504) 566-1600