Mayer Brown adds Jeremiah A. DeBerry as Director of Diversity & Inclusion and names partner Lori E. Lightfoot as Co-Chair of Firmwide Diversity Committee
5 August 2013
Mayer Brown, a leading global law firm, announced that Jeremiah A. DeBerry has been named Director of Diversity & Inclusion in the United States, and will be based in the firm’s New York office.
“Mayer Brown is fully committed to the principle and the practice of diversity and inclusion, both because it is the right thing to do and because it makes sound business sense,” said Mayer Brown Chairman Paul Theiss. “Jerry brings to us a proven track record of success in planning and implementing diversity initiatives, and he will have our full support as he helps to lead and further expand our efforts to recruit, develop and promote individuals at all levels of our organization regardless of race, religious beliefs, ethnicity, physical ability, gender, gender identity or sexual orientation. It is our intent to be an industry leader in this initiative.”
In addition to Mr. DeBerry’s appointment, Mayer Brown also announced that Litigation & Dispute Resolution Partner Lori E. Lightfoot has been named a co-chair of its firmwide Committee on Diversity & Inclusion, joining Corporate & Securities Partner Brian May in that role.
“Diversity and inclusion always have been moral imperatives at our firm, and in today’s multicultural world they also are critical to our ability to provide clients with the level of service they deserve and demand,” Mr. Theiss said. “Lori has served on the Committee with skill and dedication since she rejoined the firm in 2005, and she and Brian will provide effective leadership as we work to accelerate our progress toward our diversity and inclusion goals.”
Mr. DeBerry joins Mayer Brown from Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft, where he was director of diversity beginning in 2007. Previously, he served as president of the National Attorney of Color Network from 2005-2007. He joined that organization after 14 years as an attorney in private practice, most recently as an equity partner at Thelen LLP, where he chaired the Diversity Committee. He holds a BA degree from Tufts University and a JD degree from the University of Virginia School of Law.
“For nearly a decade, I have been on the front lines of the effort to achieve greater diversity in the legal profession,” Mr. DeBerry said. “Mayer Brown’s commitment to diversity parallels my own, and I welcome the opportunity to help the firm more fully realize the benefits that diversity affords for our people, our clients and the firm.”
Ms. Lightfoot is a trial attorney, investigator and risk manager with extensive experience in every facet of complex commercial litigation. She also has litigated or otherwise resolved disputes concerning employment discrimination, particularly class actions involving senior executives, and regularly advises clients on avoidance of and preparation for potential litigation. Before rejoining Mayer Brown, where she began her career as an associate, Ms. Lightfoot held several senior management positions with the City of Chicago and is a former federal prosecutor in the Northern District of Illinois.