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Our Commitment to Diversity

Numerous K&L Gates Diverse and Women Lawyers Recognized for Leadership and Legal Accomplishments

2 November 2020

Pittsburgh - Global law firm K&L Gates LLP congratulates a number of diverse and women lawyers across the firm’s platform who recently have been honored for their accomplishments within the legal industry. These honors have included selections to the Minority Corporate Counsel Association’s Rainmakers list, Legal Eagles Hall of Fame, the American Law Institute, Lawyers of Color’s Power List, The National Black Lawyers’ Top 40 Under 40, and the boards of the Chicago Bar Association and New Jersey Women Lawyer’s Association, as well as awards from the National Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Division and the U.S. Office of the Secretary of Defense, among others. The recognitions coincide with several honors K&L Gates itself recently has received, including a Chicago Committee on Minorities in Large Law Firm’s Diversity Award and a Liberty and Hope Award from the Oregon League of Minority Voters. 

K&L Gates also was named a Top Performer by the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD) for the firm’s continued commitment to building a more inclusive legal profession. This is the sixth time K&L Gates has earned the distinction, which recognizes organizations and law firms in the top 20 percent for participation in LCLD programs and activities.

Founded in 2009, LCLD comprises more than 350 corporate chief legal officers from many of the United States’ premier corporations and managing partners from major law firms who are committed to building a more diverse and inclusive legal profession. Together, these individuals work to create and advance the organization’s various programs aimed at attracting, inspiring, and nurturing generational talent within the legal industry. K&L Gates has a longstanding and deep involvement with LCLD, including being supportive of LCLD’s mission and active in many of the organization’s programs such as the Fellows and Pathfinder initiatives and the Success in Law School Mentoring Program, a comprehensive series for first-year law students from diverse backgrounds based on the principles of legal excellence and personal involvement.

Recent accomplishments of K&L Gates’ diverse and women lawyers include:

  • Newark partner and a leader of K&L Gates’ global labor and employment practice Rosemary Alito was elected to the American Law Institute. Alito advises on employment disputes and litigation matters involving benefits, discrimination, wage and hour, wrongful termination, and harassment. 
  • Juliana Araujo, a São Paulo partner, was named one of Latin America’s Top 100 Female Lawyers of 2020 by LatinVex. Araujo advises clients on cross-border corporate law and compliance.
  • Chicago litigation and disputes associate Marvis Barnes was named among the Top 40 Under 40 Black Lawyers in Illinois by The National Black Lawyers. Barnes represents midsize and large corporations in a variety of complex commercial disputes.
  • Chicago health care associate Nora Becerra was honored as one of Chicago Scholars’ “35 Under 35 Young Leaders Making an Impact” for 2020. Chicago Scholars is a nonprofit organization with a mission to mentor first-generation college students from under-resourced communities. 
  • New York partner Calvina Bostick is the 2020 recipient of the Rhonda F. Williams Professionalism Award from the National Bar Association Young Lawyers Division, which recognizes talented individuals within the African American legal community who have enhanced the profession through exemplary practice of law. Bostick focuses her practice on mergers and acquisitions, private equity investments, and other business transactions. 
  • Real estate partner Olivia Byrne was named one of the Top 25 Opportunity Zone (OZ) Influencers for 2020 and one of the top OZ lawyers in the U.S. for a second consecutive year by Opportunity Zone Magazine. Byrne practices in the firm’s Washington, D.C., office and co-leads K&L Gates’ cross-disciplinary OZ offering, launched in 2018. 
  • Shiau Yen Chin-Dennis, managing partner of the Portland office and a member of the firm’s corporate practice, was the recipient of a Patriot Award from the United States Office of the Secretary of Defense after being nominated for the award by a currently deployed Portland associate who serves as a Major in the Oregon Army National Guard. The award recognizes supervisors for their support of the nominating service member and their family by providing accommodations including flexible schedules, time off prior to and after deployment, caring for families, and granting leaves of absence.
  • Seattle associate Matthew Clark was named among the Top 40 Under 40 Black Lawyers in Washington by The National Black Lawyers. Clark is a member of the firm’s environment, land and natural resources practice group, where he focuses on regulatory compliance, transactions involving energy and infrastructure, environmental permitting, natural resource development, and land use.
  • Mallory Cooney, a litigation associate in the firm’s Miami office, has been named among the Miami-Dade Chapter of the Florida Association for Women Lawyers (FAWL) 2020 Leaders in the Law, recognizing women who have made meaningful contributions to their communities and acted as positive role models for other FAWL members. 
  • Elisa D’Amico, a partner in the firm’s Miami office, was named an Up & Comer by South Florida Business & Wealth Magazine. The award recognizes young professionals who have achieved excellence in their careers, shown a commitment to their community, and demonstrated leadership.
  • Chicago partners Lauren Norris Donahue, Alexis Crawford Douglas, Molly McGinley, and Katherine Staba have been named among the 2020 Notable Women in Law by Crain’s Chicago Business for their ability to effect change in their roles and practice areas and serve as role models who have assumed leadership positions in professional or civic organizations. Douglas was also recently elected to the Board of Managers of The Chicago Bar Association.
  • Max Gelernter, a Pittsburgh associate, was named to the Pittsburgh Business Times30 Under 30 list for 2020. Gelernter is a member of the firm’s complex commercial litigation and disputes practice group, and also focuses on compliance with the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and internal investigations.
  • Washington, D.C., associate Amy Conant Hoang has been named to Law360’s 2020 Government Contracts Editorial Advisory Board. Hoang is a member of K&L Gates’ government contracts and procurement policy group, where she provides counsel to clients in the defense, information technology, and professional services industries. 
  • Miami litigation associate Olivia Kelman was named among the Daily Business Review’s 2019 Most Effective Lawyers for her pro bono work with fellow Miami associate Joshua Carpenter representing a Martin County inmate fighting for the religious freedom to grow facial hair while in custody.
  • Portland corporate partner Brendan Gutierrez McDonnell was named among the Minority Corporate Counsel Association’s 2020 Rainmakers. This accolade recognizes 11 diverse attorneys whose business acumen, passion, and dedication to proactive client development has set them apart as leaders in the legal profession. Late last year, McDonnell was also recognized by The Portland Business Journal during their inaugural Rainmaker Awards.
  • Desiree Moore, a Chicago partner, was named to the 2020 Chicago Daily Law Bulletin & Chicago Lawyer 40 Under 40 list. Lawyers are selected based on their accomplishments and civic or pro bono efforts. Moore is a litigation partner and founding member and co-lead of the firm’s Digital Crisis Planning & Response (DCPR) client solution.
  • Miami partner Jason Murray was named to the Legal Eagles 2020 Hall of Fame by Franchise Times, an honor given to those recognized as a top legal professional in the franchise industry for 10 years. Murray focuses his practice on advising clients on the creation, management, licensing, protection, and enforcement of franchised business relationships, product distribution systems, and dealership networks. 
  • Victoria Oguntoye, an associate in the Dallas office, was named among the Top 40 Under 40 Black Lawyers in Texas by The National Black Lawyers. Oguntoye focuses her practice on defending business entities in complex commercial disputes in state and federal trial and appellate courts.
  • Raleigh and New York partner Margaret Rosenfeld received a gubernatorial appointment to the North Carolina Board of Science, Technology, and Innovation. Rosenfeld focuses her corporate and securities law practice on public company reporting, corporate governance, public and private financings, security token and digital asset offerings, blockchain technology matters, corporate investigations, mergers and acquisitions, and intellectual property protection and licensing.  
  • Seattle associate Briana Swift was named Region 16 President of the Hispanic National Bar Association. Swift is a member of the employee benefits and executive compensation practice and has experience advising on ERISA and tax compliance issues, as well as plan design, drafting, and administration.
  • Loly Tor, a partner in the firm’s Newark office and mass tort and product liability practice, has been elected to the Executive Board of the New Jersey Women Lawyer’s Association (NJWLA), and will serve as Secretary for a one-year term. Tor has been an active member of the NJWLA for the past several years, including having served as co-chair of the Judicial Committee. 
  • Pallavi Mehta Wahi, co-managing partner, United States; managing partner of K&L Gates’ Seattle office; and chair of the firm’s global Diversity Committee, was named to Lawyers of Color’s Power List 2020, recognizing the most influential minority attorneys and allies in the U.S. A member of the firm’s litigation and dispute resolution practice, she was also recently named to the International A-List 2020 by the India Business Law Journal, honoring the top India-focused lawyers at international law firms.

“Congratulations to each of these lawyers on their exceptional achievements,” said K&L Gates Global Managing Partner Jim Segerdahl. “We are honored and proud to have these and many other talented lawyers helping to serve the firm’s clients around the world, and we are pleased to see these colleagues recognized for their contributions to our firm, our clients, our communities, and the legal profession.”

In addition to its Top Performer designation from LCLD, K&L Gates’ recent recognitions for its commitment to opportunities for diverse and women lawyers have included being honored with a Chicago Committee on Minorities in Large Law Firm’s 2020 Diversity Award in the Law Firm Leadership category in acknowledgement of K&L Gates’ racially or ethnically diverse lawyer representation on its executive committee and management; as the “Most Diverse Law Firm” in the Portland metro area by the Portland Business Journal; and with a Liberty and Hope Award from the Oregon League of Minority Voters. Other recent firm accolades have included a ninth Gold Standard Certification from the Women in Law Empowerment Forum (WILEF); a tenth consecutive rating as a “Best Place to Work for LGBT Equality” from the Human Rights Campaign; and an “Employer of Choice for Gender Equality” certification by the Australian Workplace Gender Equality Agency. 

K&L Gates also sponsors and participates in a number of other diversity-related programs, including the firm’s newly-launched Reconciliation Action Plan, an Australian initiative that provides access to justice for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and organizations through the establishment and strengthening of relationships with, the fostering of greater respect for, and collaboration to create opportunities for individuals from these cultures. Among other organizations the firm supports are Diversity Council Australia, Equality Campaign Australia, the Hispanic National Bar Association (HNBA), Lambda Law, the Minority Corporate Counsel Association, the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA), the National Association of Women Lawyers (NAWL), the National Bar Association, the National LGBT Bar Association, and the Stonewall (UK) Global Diversity Champions Program.

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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