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Our Commitment to Diversity

K&L Gates Selects 2023 Leadership Council on Legal Diversity Fellow, Pathfinders

6 March 2023

Global law firm K&L Gates LLP has named partner Mundo de la Fuente (Houston) as its 2023 representative to the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD) Fellows Program and associates Ami Jani (Seattle) and Ashley Song (Orange County) as members of this year’s LCLD Pathfinder Program.

Launched in 2011, LCLD’s Fellows Program works to identify, train, and advance the next generation of high-potential attorneys from diverse backgrounds in order to foster diversity at the leadership levels of law firms and corporate legal departments. Designed to supplement training initiatives at LCLD member corporations and law firms, LCLD’s Pathfinder Program provides participants with practical tools for developing and leveraging internal professional networks, foundational leadership skills, and an understanding of career development strategies.

de la Fuente represents domestic and international energy clients on the development and financing of renewable energy and infrastructure projects; the trading of commodities; and on joint ventures, mergers and acquisitions, and the structuring of cross-border projects, transactions, and investments. He also advises developers and investors on real estate acquisitions and dispositions, lease negotiations, project development, land use and site control matters, and project financing.

Jani focuses her practice on domestic and international investments in private equity funds, hedge funds, investment management agreements, co-investments, and secondary transactions.

Song focuses her practice on consumer class actions and employment law, including advice and counsel and litigating disputes, across diverse sectors and industries.

Pallavi Wahi, K&L Gates’ co-managing partner, United States, and chairwoman of the firmwide diversity committee, commented: “Mundo, Ami, and Ashley have shown steadfast commitment to building a more diverse and inclusive firm. We are thrilled that they have the opportunity to participate in the LCLD Fellows and Pathfinder Programs this year, and we look forward to their many contributions in the years ahead.”

Founded in 2009, LCLD has grown to an organization of more than 400 members who serve as either general counsel of major corporations or managing partners of the nation's leading law firms. It is one of numerous diversity-related programs in which K&L Gates serves as a sponsor or participant. Internally, these include the firm’s Conversations About Race speaker series focusing on the lingering effects of inequality and systemic racism in society; an equal justice pro bono effort to provide pro bono assistance in areas of particular need, such as voting rights, criminal justice reform, and the rights of indigenous peoples; a leadership program to help the firm’s women partners advance; an expanding K&L Gates: The Power of Partnership program with clients that offers first-year law school students the unique opportunity to experience legal work in both firm and in-house client settings; a firmwide mentoring program for diverse attorneys; and a Pathway to Success business training program with Ms. JD to aid the firm’s women associates in building their careers. Among external organizations the firm supports are the National Association of Women Lawyers (NAWL), the Minority Corporate Counsel Association (MCCA), the Hispanic National Bar Association (HNBA), the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA), the National Bar Association (NBA), the National LGBTQ+ Bar Association, and Diversity Council Australia.

K&L Gates was named by LCLD as both a Top Performer and a Compass Award winner for 2022. These distinctions are given to organizations that are most active in and supportive of LCLD’s mission and programs, and recognize the firm’s strong commitment to building more diverse organizations and a more inclusive legal profession.

To read more about K&L Gates’ commitment and approach to diversity and inclusion, please visit the firm’s website.

K&L Gates is a fully integrated global law firm with lawyers located across five continents. The firm represents leading multinational corporations, growth and middle-market companies, capital markets participants and entrepreneurs in every major industry group as well as public sector entities, educational institutions, philanthropic organizations and individuals.

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