CHARLESTON – The law firm Frost Brown Todd has received a perfect score on the Corporate Equality Index (CEI) from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation.
This is the third consecutive year Frost Brown Todd, which has an office in Charleston, has received a 100 percent on the Corporate Equality Index. The index is a national benchmark survey that looks at the corporate policies and practices in relation to equality in the workplace. Frost Brown Todd was one of 517 major businesses that earned top marks on the index for 2016.
“We are very pleased to have attained 100 percent on the scorecard for the third year in a row, but realize our work in this area is continuous and certainly not finished, Kimberly S. Amrine, a member and director of diversity and inclusion at Frost Brown Todd, told the The West Virginia Record. “We want to be recognized by all our employees, as well as our peers and others in the legal industry, as having the most inclusive environment in our respective markets. Receiving top marks in this report is an honor and reinforces that we are on the right track.”
For Frost Brown Todd, the CEI provides an opportunity to measure its success with its LGBTQ policies that it has enacted as it said the results are not always “tangible and immediate.”
“Promoting inclusion makes our firm a better place to work for everyone. It makes each person feel welcome and part of our team approach to client service,” Amrine said. “Many clients, of course, appreciate that we engage in diversity and inclusion efforts that mirror and complement their own.”
Through the Corporate Equality Index, Frost Brown Todd was recognized as a “Best Place to Work for LGBT Equality.”
“We take our commitment to inclusion very seriously and work hard with firm leadership, our diversity and inclusion committee, our HR and benefits professionals and our employees to make improvements,” Amrine said. “We allocate resources to programs and education and are committed to monitoring and measuring our progress.”
Frost Brown Todd also holds an inclusion workshop that comprises 2 1/2 hours of mandatory training on “unconscious bias” that is designed to create awareness and improve interactions with others. The firm also holds inclusion workshops on topics that range from generational differences to religion and disabilities. It recently added a workshop called, “Creating Safe & Supported Spaced for LGBTQ+ Youth and Coworkers.” The workshop was created to help its employees interact with issues of gender and sexual identity.
The law firm also holds events to provide mentoring from its attorneys to law students that are minorities and has extended this to LGBTQ students and attorneys.
“We noticed that the same opportunity to build relationships did not exist for the LGBTQ+ community, so we decided to start hosting [special] receptions to bring together law students and practicing lawyers, assisting them in forming meaningful mentoring relationships,” Amrine said. “These events have been held in several of our markets to support LGBTQ+ law students, and help emphasize that an inclusive environment is a priority at our firm.”