At FordHarrison, we believe in the power of diversity, the strength of equity, and the importance of inclusion. We are not just a team; we are a family of legal professionals committed to fostering an environment where every voice is heard, every perspective is valued, and every colleague is empowered.

John L. Monroe, Jr.
Firm Managing Partner

Vision: To be a workplace where our people feel valued and included. A workplace where our people are open to sharing their beliefs and values and receptive to learning and growing from exploring the backgrounds and experiences of their peers. A workplace where diverse ideas are generated to create positive change in our firm and innovative solutions for our clients.

Mission: To create an inclusive environment where each individual can be their “true” self and work together with their practice group or department to create original ideas that place the firm at the forefront as a leader in the legal field.

Strategic Objectives.  We believe in being on the cutting edge of everything that we do and to continue to guide our path toward that goal, we have focused our diversity and inclusion efforts on three distinct, yet intertwined objectives: 

Recruit, Retain, Advance
Recruit, Retain, Advance

Integrate recruitment, retention, and advancement into our firm's overall objectives, through continuing to create partnerships within the community, developing an environment that is truly supportive of change and fosters good working relationships, and creating an achievable pathway to advancement within the firm.

Create a Better Workplace
Create a Better Workplace

Foster a culture and work environment that focuses on developing a tailored plan for internal and external mentoring and opportunities for cross-cultural dialogue to eliminate subtle bias and stereotyping and to open minds to alternative solutions

Create an Engaged and Active Workforce
Create an Engaged and Active Workforce

Develop and implement a plan for utilizing the firm's "assets" – its members - to create a culture of inclusion through innovation, collaboration, and risk-taking for change

Aided by the advocacy and diligence of FordHarrison's Diversity Executive Council and Diversity Advisory Board, our firm strives to meet these goals and recognizes the beneficial impact a successful diversity and inclusion program will have on firm morale, productivity, strategies and success.

Building Diverse Leadership

FordHarrison believes that diversity has to be a top-down priority of the firm's leadership in order to be successful.

It has always been our goal to develop and position diverse lawyers and staff in leadership roles throughout the firm. To that end, FordHarrison created two core leadership groups that are focused on identifying innovative ways to further engrain diversity into the fabric of our firm's culture.

The Diversity Executive Council is a group comprising some of the firm's highest-ranking partners (the firm's Managing Partner, General Counsel, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Partner, and Deputy Diversity Partner) as well as two staff executives: the firm's Talent and Recruiting Partner and the firm's Chief Client Development Officer. The Diversity Executive Council is responsible for high-level strategic planning in the area of DEI, including determining how the firm invests its most valuable resources in this area. The Diversity Advisory Board is composed of attorneys from diverse backgrounds and geographic locations. Due to their physical locations and their unique perspectives, these attorneys aid us in crafting meaningful DEI programs that resonate with all of FordHarrison's lawyers.

Diversity Executive Council
C. Lash Harrison

C. Lash Harrison

Founding Partner - Senior Status

Jennifer Martinez

Jennifer Martinez

Human Resources Director

Melodie L. Tilley

Melodie L. Tilley

Chief Client Development Officer

Lavern J. Wilson

Lavern J. Wilson

Talent and Recruiting Partner

Diversity Advisory Board
Meaningful Metrics

The metrics below are a testament to our ongoing dedication to fostering an inclusive workplace where everyone thrives. These statistics offer a current snapshot of the results of a decades-long commitment to recruit, retain, and advance the best and brightest attorneys of all backgrounds and ethnicities.

Associate Stats (as of 4/24/24)

2024 Partner Class Stats

2024 Executive Committee Stats


At FordHarrison, we understand the significance of ensuring that our client teams exceed our clients’ and the legal industry’s standards for equity and inclusivity, affording opportunities for legal professionals of all backgrounds to excel. We are honored to have had our efforts recognized by clients, such as McDonalds, and legal industry diversity organizations, such as the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity.  

McDonald's Legal
McDonald's Legal

FordHarrison received the inaugural McDonald's Legal EMPOWER Award for mid-size firms in 2021. The award was created to highlight McDonald's external legal suppliers who demonstrate an innovative and genuine commitment to DEI.

Leadership Council on Legal Diversity
Leadership Council on Legal Diversity

LCLD is an organization of more than 400 corporate chief legal officers and law firm managing partners who have pledged themselves, through to creating a truly diverse U.S. legal profession. FordHarrison has been actively involved in LCLD's programs for many years. 

  • Since 2015, we have appointed an LCLD Fellow every year. A total of eight FH attorneys have been named as Fellows since 2016, including David Cheng, Kristin Gray, Paige Lyle, and Lavern Wilson.
  • Since 2020, we have appointed LCLD Pathfinders each year. A total of six FH attorneys have been named as Pathfinders, including Jenny Choi, Min Kim, Jennifer Ohn, and Danielle Pierre.
  • Since 2016, we have participated in LCLD’s 1L Scholars program, working with LCLD member companies to provide meaningful summer internships to first-year law students.
  • Through our LCLD partnership, FH attorneys have also been involved in LCLD’s Success in Law School mentoring program.

FordHarrison is committed to working with employers to continue pushing diversity forward. Our goal is to provide a menu of services and in-depth assessments to develop and implement proven strategies that align with organizational objectives, ensuring that diversity, equity and inclusion is not just a concept but a practical driver of success for our clients.

Dawn Siler-Nixon
Diversity Equity & Inclusion Partner

Our attorneys partner with employers to provide DEI solutions designed to enhance and improve an organization's culture.

FordHarrison is committed to maintaining a diverse workforce that reflects the communities in which we operate and recognizes that our internal work to foster DEI is as critical to the success of our business as it is to the satisfaction of our attorneys and staff. Through our own internal programs, we have seen firsthand that DEI can provide bountiful returns to both the employer and employees alike. With that experience in mind, our attorneys believe DEI programs are more than just something employers need to meet legal and regulatory obligations. 

To learn more about FordHarrison’s DEI practice group, click here.

FordHarrison Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Audit (FH DEIA) Taskforce. The FH DEIA Taskforce guides employers through a proactive analysis of proposed and ongoing programs and initiatives to continue increasing diversity while remaining in compliance with federal, state and local employment laws. To learn more about the FH DEIA Taskforceclick here.


We at FordHarrison partner with local, regional, and global organizations to actively promote diversity in the legal profession and advance diverse attorneys into leadership positions. By building diverse leadership through internal mentoring and training and also through involvement in charitable organizations in our different office markets, we are paving the way for a culture where every employee thrives, regardless of background.

Luis A. Santos
Deputy Diversity Equity & Inclusion Partner

At the national, local, and state levels, we actively engage with charitable, DEI, and legal industry organizations that align with our mission to create positive social impact. Our dedication to DEI has not gone unnoticed, as our firm has been honored and recognized by organizations and publications for our significant strides in promoting diversity and inclusivity within our firm and the legal industry. These accolades serve as a testament to our ongoing efforts to contribute meaningfully to the advancement of DEI both within our firm and in the broader community. Below is a sampling of our more recent accolades in DEI, for information on our past recognitions, read more here

LCLD Compass 2023 Award Recipient
LCLD Compass 2023 Award Recipient

FordHarrison is a proud recipient of LCLD's 2023 Compass Award recognizing the firm's involvement in and committment to the organization.

National Law Journal 2024 Women's Scorecard
National Law Journal 2024 Women's Scorecard

The National Law Journal listed FordHarrison as number 11 on its 2024 Women's Scorecard, a part of the NLJ 500 firm headcount report. 


The 2022 Law360 Diversity Snapshot ranked FordHarrison #19 for law firms with 101-250 attorneys. In the report, law firms were separated into size categories and ranked by their precentages of both minority partners and minority associates.

FodHarrison Women Leaders Forum Awarded Top 10 Innovations in Diversity
FodHarrison Women Leaders Forum Awarded Top 10 Innovations in Diversity

The Profiles in Diversity Journal's awarded the firm's Women Leaders Forum a Top 10 recognition for their 16th Annual Innovation in Diversity Awards. To see the recognition, please click here.

Diversity Journal's 2020 Diversity Teams Award
Diversity Journal's 2020 Diversity Teams Award

In its Spring 2020 issue, Profiles in Diversity Journal recognized FordHarrison with its 2020 Diversity Teams Award for the progress that the firm's diversity and inclusion team has achieved. 

Litigation Counsel of America Diversity Partner
Litigation Counsel of America Diversity Partner

FordHarrison is recognized as a Diversity Partner by the Litigation Counsel of America (LCA). To qualify for this designation, a law firm must have a minimum of four attorneys recognized as Fellows by the Litigation Counsel of America.

Profiles in Diversity Journal
Profiles in Diversity Journal "Women Worth Watching"

The Profiles in Diversity Journal's annual "Women Worth Watching" list is published annually to honor the accomplishments of women from a variety of industries. To see our full list of "Women Worth Watching" designees, please click here.

Profiles in Diversity Journal
Profiles in Diversity Journal "Latino Leadership International Award"

In 2023, Tampa partner Luis Santos was featured in the Profiles in Diversity Journal's "Latino Leadership International Award" list. To see the full list of FordHarrison attorneys who have received this recognition, click here.

Our firm is committed to maintaining a diverse workforce that reflects the communities in which we operate. For this reason, we ensure that our firm and our lawyers are actively involved in promoting diversity in the legal profession. We regularly participate in and sponsor local, regional, national, and international organizations that exist to mentor and advance attorneys of all backgrounds and ethnicities into leadership positions. 

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FordHarrison is committed to growing a strong supplier network with businesses that have a genuine commitment to DEI.

At FordHarrison, DEI has always been a core value and we recognize that establishing a diverse supplier database allows us to continue providing our clients with superior client service. We celebrate building an inclusive supplier catalog that encourages unique beliefs, values and ideas. To be included in FordHarrison's supplier network, please download and complete our supplier profile form

FordHarrison’s Supplier Diversity Program (FHSDP) was established in 2020 to promote supplier diversity by encouraging the engagement and award of vendor and supplier work and contracts in a way that strengthens and increases business opportunities for minority and women-owned businesses (“Diverse Suppliers”). Diverse Suppliers are defined as those businesses in which the majority (51%+) shareholders are women or minorities or businesses certified as Minority Business Enterprises (MBEs), Women Business Enterprises (WBEs), Service-Disabled Veteran Business Enterprises (SDVOBEs), Veteran Business Enterprises (VBEs), Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Business Enterprises (LGBTBEs) and Disability-Owned Business Enterprises (DOBEs). FordHarrison encourages all firm members to use Diverse Suppliers when available and appropriate for the needs of each client. 
FordHarrison will maintain an annual list of its suppliers, their status as a Diverse Supplier (as noted above), and the Firm’s spend with each supplier.  Each year, FordHarrison will endeavor to increase its use of Diverse Suppliers in each office and collectively as a firm.

Suppliers that meet our diversity requirements are companies that are 51% owned, controlled, and operated by one or more of the below minorities:

  • African American
  • Asian/Pacific Islander American
  • Disabled
  • Hispanic American
  • LGBT
  • Native American
  • Non-Minority Women
  • Veteran 

Certification Requirements
FordHarrison recommends but does not require, your business to be certified. We encourage all minority and women suppliers to be certified by the Women's Business Enterprise National Council and/or the National Minority Supplier Development Council.