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Baker Donelson Earns High Score in Human Rights Campaign 2021 Corporate Equality Index

Baker Donelson has received a high score on the Human Rights Campaign Foundation's 2021 Corporate Equality Index (CEI), the nation's foremost benchmarking survey and report measuring corporate policies and practices related to LGBTQ workplace equality. Baker Donelson joins the ranks of 1,142 major U.S. businesses that were also ranked in the 2021 CEI.

Baker Donelson earned a score of 90 on the 2021 CEI report, which rated companies on detailed criteria falling under four central pillars: non-discrimination policies across business entities; equitable benefits for LGBTQ workers and their families; supporting an inclusive culture; and corporate social responsibility.

Noah Kressler, chair of Baker Donelson's LGBTQ resource group BakerPride and a shareholder in the New Orleans office, said, "At Baker Donelson, diversity and inclusion are our core values, and we are committed to being a welcoming and nurturing workplace for LGBTQ attorneys and staff. In 2020, we reaffirmed that commitment by becoming a Mansfield Rule Certified Plus firm and implementing a Diversity & Inclusion Compact, a comprehensive multi-year plan to drastically increase our number of diverse attorneys, including LGBTQ attorneys, and become an industry-leading law firm in diversity and inclusion by December 31, 2025. We are proud of our diversity and inclusion efforts and are gratified by our continued recognition by the Human Rights Campaign."

Companies rated in the CEI include Fortune magazine's 500 largest publicly traded businesses, American Lawyer magazine's top 200 revenue-grossing law firms (the AmLaw 200), and hundreds of publicly and privately held mid- to large-sized businesses.

"From the previously unimaginable impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, to a long overdue reckoning with racial injustice, 2020 was an unprecedented year. Yet, many businesses across the nation stepped up and continued to prioritize and champion LGBTQ equality," said Alphonso David, Human Rights Campaign president. "This year has shown us that tools like the CEI are crucial in the work to increase equity and inclusion in the workplace, but also that companies must breathe life into these policies and practices in real and tangible ways. Thank you to the companies that understand protecting their LGBTQ employees and consumers from discrimination is not just the right thing to do – but the best business decision."

Baker Donelson strives to create an inclusive environment for all employees, welcoming people of all races, genders, ages, languages, ethnicities, cultural backgrounds, disabilities, sexual orientations and religious beliefs to assist clients in achieving their legal goals. As a Mansfield Rule Certified Plus 2020 firm, Baker Donelson affirmatively considers at least 30 percent women, attorneys of color, LGBTQ+ attorneys, and attorneys with disabilities in the candidate pools for recruitment, governance roles, equity partner promotions, and inclusion in formal pitch presentations to clients. Through BakerPride, a large and active employee resource group for LGBTQ attorneys and staff as well as straight allies in the Firm, Baker Donelson sponsors and supports numerous client development initiatives, LGBTQ community organizations and events in the Firm's footprint and provides a means for members to become involved in the Firm's efforts to promote LGBTQ equality.

About HRC

The Human Rights Campaign Foundation is the educational arm of America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people. HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community.

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