Diversity, Equity & Inclusion



We are a firm that celebrates diversity, equity, inclusion and service within the global communities in which we live and work. - Jon A. Ballis, P.C., Chairman, Executive Committee


As a firm with a global presence, we embrace and promote diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI), both within our own organization and throughout the legal profession. DEI at Kirkland transcends race, gender, age, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion, country of origin and political affiliation. We value and encourage diversity with respect to each individual’s work style, career path, and professional and life experiences. We continually strive to maintain a culture of inclusion and belonging, a collaborative community of diverse colleagues and allies, and connections to external networks that support the professional development of our diverse attorneys.

AAPI Heritage Month 2024
2:26 min
Kirkland’s excited to celebrate the impact of the AAPI community on our Firm and greater society.
AAPI Heritage Month 2024
2:26 min
Kirkland’s excited to celebrate the impact of the AAPI community on our Firm and greater society.
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Awards & Recognition

Best Places to Work for LGBTQ Equality

Human Rights Campaign, Corporate Equality Index, 2008–2023

One of the Best Law Firms for Women

Recognized by Seramount for the 12th consecutive year

A-List Firm

The American Lawyer, 2023


DEI Leadership

Kirkland’s DEI Task Force is a select group of Executive Committee members and Firm DEI leaders who oversee strategic DEI priorities.

Our Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee comprises more than 80 partners across our U.S. and international offices who implement strategic efforts around recruitment, retention and promotion of diverse attorneys.

Diversity Recruitment

Kirkland's leadership is committed to attracting the best diverse talent. The Firm both internally maintains and partners with DEI-focused organizations on various recruiting initiatives to build a robust pipeline of future diverse leaders.

  • Kirkland partners with the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD) to offer a 10-week program that advances selected candidates’ professional development by providing early views into working in-house and as outside counsel at a major law firm.
  • Kirkland is a leading sponsor of Sponsors for Educational Opportunity (SEO), hosting SEO Law Fellows in each of our U.S. offices annually.
  • Our ALLSA Program optimizes the partnership of our diverse attorney network with diverse law student associations at more than 20 top law schools.
  • The Firm supports various pre-law school and early pipeline programs, including BARBRI Law Preview, Legal Outreach and Thrive Scholars, to start developing future diverse leaders at the earliest stages of their career.

Inclusion & Belonging

Kirkland proudly hosts a network of eight professional networks (formerly known as affinity groups) to promote community-building and professional development for our diverse attorneys:

  • Access Professional Network (attorneys with disabilities)
  • Asian Pacific Islander (API) Professional Network
  • Black Professional Network
  • Military Service Professional Network
  • Pride Professional Network (LGBTQ+ attorneys)
  • South Asian Professional Network
  • Unidos Professional Network (Latinx attorneys)
  • Women's Leadership Initiative (WLI)

We recognize and honor the diverse backgrounds of those in our community by celebrating various diversity awareness months and other occasions throughout the year with Firmwide and local programming.

Our Inclusive Leadership Series provides engaging and educational programs focused on leadership development for diverse attorneys at all levels. Past programs have highlighted topics such as “covering,” cultural competency, intersectionality, implicit bias and client development.

Better Access for All

At Kirkland, we recognize the diverse backgrounds and experiences of those in our community. The Firm’s Access Professional Network brings together our attorneys who are dedicated to advancing inclusion for people with disabilities. The group initiates discussions and organizes programming related to accessibility and disability employment, as well as general disability awareness.

In addition to supporting the Access Professional Network, Kirkland partners with CAI’s Neurodiverse Solutions (formerly known as Autism2Work), a program that brings neurodivergent individuals into the workforce. Our pro bono team dedicates time and experience to cases impacting people with disabilities — on both an individual and societal basis — and many of our attorneys volunteer with or give to disability-focused organizations, including the Shirley Ryan Ability Lab, Cerebral Palsy Alliance Research Foundation, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Equip for Equality and more.


External Engagement

Kirkland proudly supports various professional development organizations for diverse professionals at the national and local levels, including Charting Your Own Course (CYOC), Corporate Counsel Women of Color (CCWC), the Hispanic National Bar Association (HNBA), the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA), the National Bar Association (NBA), the National LGBTQ+ Bar Association and the South Asian Bar Association of North America (SABA). Our partnerships with these organizations are crucial to our strategic imperative of advancing relationship and leadership opportunities for our diverse attorneys. We encourage our attorneys to actively engage with these organizations to improve their visibility, expand their networks and support the diverse legal community.

The Firm also sponsors select charitable and community organizations that support DEI in the broader community and provide leadership, programming, networking and pro bono opportunities for our diverse attorneys.

Sponsorships & Strategic Partnerships

Sponsorships & Strategic Partnerships Quick Facts

Women’s History Month 2024
2:49 min
Kirkland proudly celebrates the women attorneys and staff that have helped make our Firm a global leader.
Women’s History Month 2024
2:49 min
Kirkland proudly celebrates the women attorneys and staff that have helped make our Firm a global leader.
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Leadership Development

Kirkland’s leadership is committed to the professional development of our diverse attorneys. The Firm offers various initiatives in line with this effort, including professional network-specific mentorship programs, our Leaders Among Us series featuring rising diverse Firm leaders, and partnerships with external organizations on educational programming (CCWC, CYOC, MCCA, Women’s Leadership Edge, LCLD Fellows and Pathfinders, WOMN LLC and more).

Our leaders recognize the value of not only mentorship, but also meaningful sponsorship across difference. These relationships between our most senior attorneys and future diverse leaders are critical to our mission of advancing leadership pathways for diverse attorneys. Watch some of our attorneys’ stories about sponsorship.

Client & Alumni Engagement

Creating relationships with clients and Kirkland alumni is pivotal in advancing within the legal industry. We help foster critical connections among our diverse attorneys, Kirkland clients and alumni through networking events, DEI program partnerships and sponsorships of external organizations such as the Advancement Initiative.