Mark Stewart, Chair of Ballard Spahr, served on the panel at the Philadelphia Bar Association’s National Symposium on Diversity in the Legal Profession. The panel, “White Men and Diversity: A Candid Conversation,” explored how diversity is handled at various law firms in the city.

Mr. Stewart said that it is important for white men in positions of power to see some of the problems that persist with respect to diversity in the legal profession. “How do you get people like me to be more sensitive to the fact that we are not able to walk in the shoes of others?” he asked. He added that firms need to identify people who are good at mentoring and believe in the benefits of diversity. Change won’t come until it becomes part of the professional culture.

Lucretia C. Clemons, a black attorney at Ballard Spahr, said she received an offer a few years ago for a prominent in-house position and seriously considered taking it when she got an e-mail from Mr. Stewart. The subject line was, “don’t go.” Ms. Clemons said she still has the e-mail. She is now a partner at the firm.

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