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Thompson Coburn receives MCCA George B. Vashon Innovator Award

October 1, 2019

Tom Minogue accepting Geroge B. Vashon Award
Ann Lee Benedict and Tom Minogue

Updated on October 22.

Thompson Coburn has been selected as this year’s recipient of the Minority Corporate Counsel Association’s (MCCA) 2019 George B. Vashon Innovator Award, a recognition for organizations who have made extraordinary strides to support diverse attorneys.

The award, named for the first licensed African American attorney in New York State and one of the first to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court, is presented to law firms with less than 500 full-time attorneys and “have led the way with innovative best practices to assist diverse attorneys.” The MCCA evaluates law firms based on a stringent review of their diversity efforts, including diverse attorney demographics, published D&I materials, D&I events and more.

In the MCCA’s review, Thompson Coburn was noted for our leadership’s commitment to diversity efforts and our firm-wide diversity initiatives. Paramount among these efforts is the hiring of our Director of Diversity & Inclusion, Norma Jackson, whose work expanding Thompson Coburn’s diversity efforts over the past year has led to significant recognition. These efforts include bolstering our affinity groups and pipeline programs, instituting new and improved diversity-centered training programs for Firm personnel, and preparing and distributing diversity materials throughout our market.

“Diversity is a core value at Thompson Coburn. We state it clearly to our partners, employees, clients and communities” said Firm Chair Tom Minogue. “We are always striving to exceed our goals on diversity and inclusion, and developing and pursuing an array of diversity initiatives, including our recruiting efforts at every level, our Thomas F. Eagleton Scholarship, our Affinity Groups and so much more.” 

“As part of Thompson Coburn’s Total Commitment to diversity and inclusion, we set a high standard for ourselves and we work daily to meet and exceed that standard” said partner Tony Anderson, co-chair of Thompson Coburn’s Diversity Committee. “Our active diversity recruiting, education and pipeline programs demonstrate our continued investment in creating a diverse and inclusive workspace.”

“This award demonstrates our firm’s dedication to diversity efforts and its exceptional accomplishments in this year alone” said partner Booker Shaw, co-chair of Thompson Coburn’s Diversity Committee. “We are committed to providing a space where everyone can achieve their professional goals; Thompson Coburn truly believes a diverse team thinks creatively, achieves more and provides the best client service.”

Thompson Coburn was presented the award on October 15 at the MCCA’s annual Creating Pathways to Diversity conference. The award was presented by  MCCA N-Gen Advisory Board Chair Ann Lee Benedict, and accepted by Tom Minogue. Tony Anderson and Norma Jackson were also in attendance. The Creating Pathways to Diversity® conference focuses on global diversity and inclusion, talent optimization, inclusive leadership and management to bolster the promotion and retention of diverse attorneys. The program offers practical development tools, best practices and resources for individual lawyers and organizations.