Locke Lord demonstrates its commitment to the communities in which we work and live through our considerable investment of time and resources in making sure our business initiatives are part of creating a better world around us.
Our lawyers and staff have given back to the communities we serve for more than a century through charitable contributions and pro bono commitments, and more recently in environmental stewardship. As part of a continued commitment to the communities in which the Firm’s lawyers work and live, Don Glendenning serves as Partner in Charge of Corporate Responsibility and Charitable Giving. Our Firm has a prevailing spirit of generosity that manifests itself through civic and community leadership, volunteerism and financial support. Our lawyers and staff serve on the boards of numerous education, health and welfare, arts, and children's charitable and faith-based organizations in the United States, Europe and Asia. We are proud of all the associations we have and the commitments we make to better the lives of those less fortunate than ourselves.
In 2016, Locke Lord was awarded the Miracle Corners of the World (MCW) 2016 Community Partnership Award for its commitment to the non-profit organization’s mission to help communities throughout the world achieve greater levels of education and health services, increased economic security and empowering children worldwide.
Our Pro Bono Committee works tirelessly to address the legal needs of the underprivileged - we believe everyone has the right to the best representation possible no matter how deep his or her pockets. We proactively involve lawyers in all of our offices, and they log an annual average of 15,000 hours of pro bono assistance to our clients, and in connection with numerous free legal clinics in the areas in which we work. In 2020, the Firm joined the Law Firm Antiracism Alliance, which aims to amplify voices oppressed by racism, use the law as a vehicle for change for communities of color and promote racial equity in the law. More than 40 lawyers have volunteered with Texas Appleseed, a charity dedicated to promoting social and economic justice by leveraging the skills and resources of volunteer lawyers and other professionals to identify practical solutions to difficult systemic problems. Our London lawyers provide pro bono legal support to and host meetings on behalf of the Prepaid International Forum, a not-for-profit association that lobbies regulators in Europe and India on behalf of its members. And our Boston lawyers provide pro bono legal support to active duty military members, veterans and their families through the Boston Bar Association (BBA) Military & Veterans Legal Help Line. Some of the legal results for our pro bono clients we have achieved include the following:
- In New York, our lawyers’ pro bono efforts helped get proper recognition on the World Trade Center memorial for a retired firefighter who died while rescuing people in the 911 tragedy.
- Our Los Angeles lawyers worked for two years to gain freedom for three women in a case of human trafficking.
- Through our Chicago office, we represent clients from around the world seeking political asylum, including from Darfur, the Central African Republic, Chad, Guatemala, Mali, Sierra Leone, Tibet and Zimbabwe.
Many of our lawyers serve in leadership roles within non-profit organizations that provide services to underrepresented individuals and have received recognition for their pro-bono efforts
- A Dallas Partner is a current Commissioner to the Texas Access to Justice Commission, a statewide organization committed to increasing access to justice for low-income Texans. The Chair of the Firm serves as co-chairman of the Texas Access to Justice Commission Gala, which raises money to support civil legal services to low-income Texas Veterans.
- The Dallas Office Managing Partner is the Past President of the Human Rights Initiative of North Texas, which provides legal and support services to refugees and immigrants who have suffered human rights abuses, advocates for justice and promotes international human rights.
- The Boston Office Managing Partner has served on the boards of directors and fundraising committees of local non-profit organizations, including GLAD, Transition House and the New England Shelter for Homeless Veterans.
- The Houston Office Managing Partner serves on the Advisory Board of the Greater Houston Area Salvation Army and the Board of Directors of Oldham Little Church Foundation.
- One of our Austin lawyers currently serves on the Board of Directors for Volunteer Legal Services of Central Texas.
- One of our Dallas lawyers currently serves as Chair of the Board of Directors for Texas Appleseed.
- The Chicago office was honored for its noteworthy pro bono contributions by its inclusion in the Public Interest Law Initiative's Pro Bono Recognition Rosters, and as the recipient of the JTBF Diversity Partnership Award for its work with Chicago middle school students to foster interest in the legal profession and careers in law.
- A Morristown associate was the first recipient of the New Jersey State Bar Association’s (NJSBA) Pro Bono Award: New Attorney, for his volunteer work with Kids in Need of Defense (KIND).
- VETSports, Inc. recognized Locke Lord for pro bono work on behalf of VETSports. Locke Lord has provided employment law advice to VETSports and helped it obtain trademarks. VETSports is a Washington, D.C.-based non-profit that raises money and organizes sporting events around the country for young veterans with the mission of getting “wounded warriors” re-integrated into their local communities and engaged with their fellow veterans in a fun, competitive environment.
- For the third year in a row, the Dallas Volunteer Attorney Program (DVAP) presented Locke Lord with its “Gold Award” in recognition of the Firm’s strong and continued commitment to pro bono work. The Gold Award is one of the highest tiers of recognition DVAP bestows.
At Locke Lord, diversity and inclusion are integral parts of our strategic plan for success. In order to have a healthy, successful workplace, our lawyers and staff must be allowed to be themselves. To that end, the environment must not only be free of all forms of discrimination, but also celebrate the broadest possible spectrum of viewpoints, perspectives and backgrounds.
We promote individuality and discussion of diversity, and support organizations that share our commitment to diversity with our time and our funds. Our diversity is broad-based and stems from varying ethnicities, races, genders, sexual orientations, languages, nationalities and religions. All of these factors aid us as we strive for an atmosphere and culture where lawyers can thrive as legal practitioners and genuinely enjoy the company of their colleagues. Locke Lord achieved a 100 percent rating in the Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s 2019 Corporate Equality Index for the third consecutive year, and Locke Lord predecessor firm Edwards Wildman earned a 100 percent rating for seven consecutive years from 2009-2015. A perfect score in this annual report evaluating policies and practices related to LGBTQ employees earns the Firm the distinction of being an “Employer of Choice” for LGBTQ employees.
At Locke Lord, we are all too aware that the number of diverse students entering and remaining in the legal profession is insufficient. To that end, we are involved in a number of initiatives designed to support diverse students interested in pursuing a legal career, like endowing scholarships, mentoring students and providing them with real world experience in a law firm.
The Women's Initiative has as its mission to support and encourage the success of women at Locke Lord. Goals include hiring, promoting and retaining female lawyers, encouraging women to take leadership roles in the Firm and providing mentoring and networking opportunities. Women's Initiative meetings are held throughout the year and address head-on the everyday issues facing women practicing law in a large firm. Further, Firm Chair Emeritus Jerry Clements serves on the Board of Directors of the National Women's Council, a nonprofit organization that seeks to provide a collective voice for women of all backgrounds, classes and ages. Locke Lord has garnered Gold Standard Certification from the Women in Law Empowerment Forum (WILEF) for its efforts to integrate women lawyers into the highest levels of Firm leadership.
Throughout the years, our charitable work has helped raise millions of dollars for hundreds of charities in the US and Europe. Our leadership positions with many of these charities help oversee the funding of everything from holiday gifts for needy children to disaster aid during tragic events like Hurricane Katrina.
In particular, Locke Lord is committed to helping children. We believe that youth of today, regardless of their ethnic background or socioeconomic status, need to be equipped with the educational tools necessary to succeed. From homework tutoring to providing the disadvantaged with some of their most basic needs, we pursue ways to make a difference in the lives of children.
We also look to establish cross-office initiatives focused on enhancing the environment in the regions in which we work. We have virtualized all of our servers to reduce power consumption for air conditioning and room footprint size. Locke Lord also actively pursues buildings with Green initiatives when opening new locations or moving existing offices. Our London office was refurbished to create a space with 35 percent better carbon efficiency than current standards. Our Chicago office is located in the world's first LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) Core & Shell gold certified building.
Some additional examples of Locke Lord’s corporate social responsibility are:
- The Children’s Law Center recognized Locke Lord’s D.C. office as a 2014 Champion for Children in recognition of its support of D.C.’s most vulnerable children. The Children’s Law Center is the largest legal services organization in the District of Columbia and the only one to focus on children.
- Our Chicago office participates in the Chicago Office Annual Day of Service, organizing a morning of volunteering for lawyers and staff on a Friday in August.
- Our Chicago, Dallas and Houston offices support the Corporate Internship Program at Cristo Rey Jesuit High School by providing students with hands-on experience in the working world and preparing them to assume leadership roles in our community.
- Our Austin office partners with Sanchez Elementary School to fulfill holiday wish lists and provide educational support through materials and books.
- Our Dallas office partners with Esperanza “Hope” Medrano Elementary School to provide mentoring, tutoring, supply drives and a holiday party at our office.
- The Dallas Office was recognized as the Top Contributing Law Firm for its support of the 2014-15 United Way of Metropolitan Dallas’ campaign.
- Our Houston office adopts the first grade class at Hilliard Elementary School each year by helping to fill out the students’ wish lists and hosting a holiday party for them.
- Since the 1980s, our Boston office has provided real estate legal services to Bridge Over Troubled Waters. Our lawyers have worked on a renovation program for their transitional housing where homeless young adults are provided with shelter, food, clothing, meals, and safety, along with access to a wide range of support and services.
- Our London office takes part in the London Legal Walk hosted by the London Legal Support Trust which works to support law centers and legal advice agencies to help make justice equally available to everyone regardless of their financial situation.
- Our Los Angeles office supports the Verbum Dei High School’s Corporate Work Study Program by providing tuition support to students and giving them real life working experience in our offices.
- Our New York office fulfills wish lists and donates holiday gifts to first, second and third graders at PS 131 School in Brooklyn.
- For several years the Washington DC office has worked with The Fund for Alexandria’s Child, a group working to enhance the quality of life of foster children and children at risk of abuse and neglect by promoting community awareness, involvement and resource development. The office has contributed grocery gift cards targeted for local area children/families/seniors and disabled citizens.