Michigan Lawyers Weekly
February 2, 2021
There were many important conversations about race this past year and Michigan was often central to the national debate. Our most populous city, Detroit, has the largest percentage of African Americans of any in America, and statewide there is significant racial, cultural and socioeconomic diversity.
One issue that pervades conversations on race is representation — or the lack thereof — in positions of power and the effect that has on minority communities. The recent election of the first multiracial woman to the vice presidency is a reminder that representation across all levels is necessary for a truly diverse society.
Representation within the legal field is no exception. Despite holding more than 13% of the population, the American Bar Association reports that only about 5% of lawyers in the U.S. are Black; Hispanics, who are 18% of the population, comprise only 4%. Similarly, women make up only around 38% of attorneys today — a record high — despite being close to half the national labor force.