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Diversity Matters: Note from the Editor

Diversity Matters Newsletter

Since our last edition of Diversity Matters, SCOTUS issued an opinion holding that admissions programs at Harvard College and the University of North Carolina violate the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment because the institutions may consider the applicant's race, among many other factors, in an effort to promote diversity in the student body. The Court also ruled that a web designer can refuse to provide services to same-sex couples seeking a wedding website because she has a right under the First Amendment to refuse to convey messages with which she disagrees through her designs. We have also seen state legislation prohibiting state universities from having diversity and inclusion offices as well as headlines regarding diversity professionals leaving major companies and other headlines that some companies are cutting diversity budgets. Regardless of one's opinion on the SCOTUS rulings or state legislation or departures of D&I professionals from private companies, we should all recognize that we are at a crossroad.

In our last edition, I encouraged readers to be intentional about what you do, who you do it with, and why you are doing it. I still believe that being intentional about our actions is critical. Creating diverse and inclusive spaces as well as fostering a sense of belonging for everyone, not just some, remains important and only happens through intentional effort. The Gen-Z generation is the most diverse and represents our future leaders. The more we unite around the true meaning and value of diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging, the better equipped we will be to respond to the changing national and global landscapes.

In this edition of Diversity Matters, we discuss sponsorships (workplace and nonimmigrant), we discuss ways to create pipelines of underrepresented individuals as our future lawyers, we find common ground around mentorship, we introduce Baker Donelson's veteran and military resource group, and we invite you to listen to Season 5 of our Diversity Ever After podcast to learn more about why belonging is so important in any workplace setting.

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