Miller Canfield Named Sole Michigan-Based Law Firm to Earn Mansfield Certification for Diversity

Miller Canfield has announced that it is the only Michigan-based firm to earn Mansfield Plus Certification, and one of only 24 nationwide to earn the designation three years in a row. Certification is awarded to law firms that meet high standards for significant representation of women and minority attorneys in firm leadership roles.

To earn Mansfield Certification from Diversity Lab, the leading incubator for innovative solutions to foster diversity and inclusion in law firms, firms must ensure that 30 percent of the candidates affirmatively considered in lateral hiring and promotions are women, attorneys of color, LGBTQ attorneys and attorneys with disabilities. One hundred firms earned certification in 2020. To earn the Plus designation, a firm must have also achieved representation of at least 30 percent women, minority, LGBTQ and disabled attorneys in a large number of key leadership roles and lateral hiring.

“We are tremendously proud of the work the firm continues to do in the areas of diversity and equity,” said Miller Canfield CEO Michael McGee. “Inclusivity is and always has been one of our core values. Our continued commitment strengthens us as individuals and as a firm.”

In August, Miller Canfield appointed Michelle Crockett to the newly created position of Chief Diversity Officer, deepening the firm’s pledge to create a diverse and equitable workplace.

As a result of Miller Canfield’s commitment to initiatives like Mansfield Certification and its internal goals and programs, the firm has made significant progress with respect to the representation of women and minority attorneys, specifically:

49% of Miller Canfield’s associates are women
40% of the firm’s non-equity principals are women
40% of managing directors are women
40% of resident directors are minorities and women

Diversity Lab announced on Sept. 15, 2020, that it is also partnering with more than 20 mid-sized firms (firms with fewer than 100 lawyers in the U.S.) to pilot the Midsize Mansfield Rule certification process.

Miller Canfield Appoints Chief Diversity Officer

Miller Canfield is pleased to announce that it has appointed Michelle Crockett to the position of Chief Diversity Officer.

“This is a great step for the firm, and one that is intended to reinforce the firm’s commitment to a diverse, inclusive and equitable working environment, free from implicit bias and structural racism,” said Miller Canfield CEO Michael McGee. “And we are fortunate to have Michelle, who is the best person in the country to do the job.”

Crockett has previously served as the firm’s Hiring Chair/Diversity and Professional Development Principal. Her achievements include leading the firm to be included in the first class of major law firms nationwide to pilot the Mansfield Rule, which requires that at least 30 percent of candidates for lateral hiring and promotion considerations be women, minority and LGBTQ candidates.

Additionally, Miller Canfield is one of 51 firms that earned the Mansfield Certified Plus designation in 2019—and one of only 27 to earn it two consecutive years—by meeting the requirement of at least 30 percent diverse lawyer representation in a notable number of current leadership roles and committees.

In the newly created role, Crockett will chair the firm’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Council, which will propose to the firm’s managing directors changes to firm structures and policies that can move the firm toward a more diverse and welcoming environment. The Council is comprised of the chairs of the following firm committees: Diversity, Summer Associates, Mentoring, Women of Miller Canfield, Pro Bono, and Associates, in addition to the Chief Operating Officer.

Under Crockett’s leadership, the firm has solidified its position as a leader in the area of diversity and inclusion and has earned national recognition for its efforts and initiatives. The firm attributes much of its success to Crockett’s relentless efforts to create actionable, measurable, results-driven initiatives that foster meaningful and sustainable change. She developed an aggressive two-year diversity plan that sets specific targets within leadership ranks, including the firm’s managing directors, to increase representation across the board.

The results have been remarkable. Specifically:

*49% of Miller Canfield’s associates are women
*40% of non-equity principals are women
*40% of managing directors are women
*40% of resident directors are minorities and women

In addition to her duties at Miller Canfield, Crockett teaches Race in the Law and K-12 Education Law at the University of Michigan Law School. She is a fellow of the American College of Labor & Employment Lawyers, a member of Michigan Lawyers Weekly’s Leaders in the Law Class of 2020, and chairs the State Bar of Michigan Labor & Employment Law Section and the Michigan Community Resources Board of Directors.