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Baker Donelson Earns Top Marks in 2016 Corporate Equality Index

Earns 100 percent on Human Rights Campaign Foundation's 14th Annual Scorecard on LGBT Workplace Equality

(Nashville, TN / November 18, 2015) Baker Donelson received a perfect score of 100 percent on the 2016 Corporate Equality Index (CEI), a national benchmarking survey and report on corporate policies and practices related to LGBT workplace equality, administered by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation. Baker Donelson joins the ranks of 391 major U.S. businesses that also earned top marks this year.

"Baker Donelson is committed to a welcoming and inclusive work environment that honors the diverse qualities in each of our employees," said Mark A. Baugh, chair of Baker Donelson's Diversity Committee. "Achieving a perfect score in the Corporate Equality Index is a recognition of our efforts to fulfill that commitment. We're very proud of this honor and look forward to continued progress in our firm's diversity and inclusion."

The 2016 CEI rated 1,024 businesses in the report, which evaluates LGBT-related policies and practices, including non-discrimination workplace protections, domestic partner benefits, transgender-inclusive health care benefits, competency programs and public engagement with the LGBT community. Baker Donelson's efforts in satisfying all of the CEI's criteria resulted in a 100 percent ranking and the designation as a "Best Place to Work for LGBT Equality."

For more information on the 2016 Corporate Equality Index, or to download a free copy of the report, visit

This is the latest of several recent recognitions honoring Baker Donelson as a diverse workplace. Earlier this year, the Firm was named one of Fortune's "100 Best Workplaces for Women®" and was also ranked among the top ten law firms in the country in Vault, Inc.'s "Best Law Firms for Diversity" list.

Launched in 2002, Baker Donelson's Diversity Initiative is focused on recruiting, developing and retaining employees from diverse backgrounds, and creating a workplace that respects and values diversity while providing a fair opportunity for all employees to maximize the fullest extent of their abilities. Since the launch of the Diversity Initiative, the increase in Baker Donelson's diverse attorney population and the number of minority shareholders has far outpaced the Firm's overall growth. Recruitment and retention of female attorneys have improved as well, and women are strongly represented in leadership roles across the Firm, from the president and chief operating officer to practice group leaders and office managing shareholders.

As part of the continued efforts of the Diversity Initiative, Baker Donelson also launched "Baker Affinitas," an affinity group for LGBT interests to bolster the inclusiveness of the Firm, which includes sponsoring events in the communities in the Firm's footprint, as well as facilitating the establishment of an LGBT pro bono initiative.

About HRC
The Human Rights Campaign is America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality. By inspiring and engaging all Americans, HRC strives to end discrimination against LGBT citizens and realize a nation that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all.

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