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Diversity in Law: Minority and Women Statistics

Diversity in professional settings, such as corporate office and law firms, has seen a steep increase in the past due to the growing number of women and minorities in the work force. However, for the first time, that number recently dropped in 2010. Now, the percentage of minorities in law firms is not shrinking, but it is not growing significantly either. Here are a few statistics of women and minorities in law firms:

  • In 2012, a survey of 228 law firms showed minority groups made up 13.9% of all lawyers in the United States. This number is the same as it was in 2008 before the recession began.
  • In 2012, women made up 31.1% of all lawyers; 45.4% of women are associates.
  • About 11% of the largest law firms in the United States have no women on their governing committees.
  • 15% of equity partners are women, and women non-equity partners make 25%.
  • Asians are the most prevalent minority group in law. They are also the most prevalent minority group for partners nationally.
  • There are very few Native American, Hawaiian Native and multiracial attorneys nationwide.
  • Atlanta has the highest number of African American partners. Richmond, Virginia came in second, followed by Detroit for the most African American partners.
  • Over half of the partners in Austin, Miami, Orlando, Phoenix, Tampa and Minneapolis are Hispanic.
  • For associates, at the national level, Asians make up 9.65% of minority attorneys. It increased 0.30% since 2009.
  • The percentage of African American attorneys decreased from 4.66% in 2009 to 4.36% in 2010 to 4.29% in 2011.
  • The percentage of Hispanic attorneys has remained the same at a steady 3.89% from 2009 to 2012.
  • The leading cities for both Asian and women attorneys are: San Jose, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Orange County, New York City and Seattle.

Although these statistics seem low, the number of women and minority professionals and college graduates has increased significantly over the past few years. In the future, is it projected that the number of women and minorities in high, professional careers will continue to grow as more and more companies and firms expand and increase diversity.

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