Diversity in the Legal Profession
Kevin Derbyshire guest speaker at A Call to Action Canada
Former Chief Administrative Officer and General Counsel, E.I. DuPont Canada Company
Speaking on behalf of diversity
I just wanted to Segway into this comment, what we need to do, and what I am doing, and what David Allgood at RBC is doing, and what we are going to have a series of discussions after this, is to let you guys know, is we are pushing the message amongst the GC community, so I sit on the Canadian Corporate Counsel Association Board with GC’s across Canada, and I am putting on the agenda “Diversity”. What does it mean, and in our commitment as GC’s to it and are we prepared to move our money with it or against it. Right, and those kinds of questions, I think, have to be raised and those kinds of discussions have to be had and that kind of ground well is so important, and I guess the last thing that I would say is, while we all have to do our part, I think that the in-house bar is really the one that really needs to set an example in this regard and when I in the push that I have been doing with my fellow GC’s, I have been asking, you name the large company and I have been speaking to the GC, “Why aren’t you involved in this”.
Many say “well, we’ve got our own” initiatives and we’re comfortable with those initiatives.” And my comment is “Well, why can’t we coleus and link those initiatives.” There is a fair amount of my backyards ok, so I don’t need to get involved in any other organizations. I just wanted to offer that to the group as well hearing directly from my colleagues from the GC community. You know making these kinds of comments or the one that we had when I spoke at the last session here in November, and the economic times have really got us, you know, prioritize different things. Well that’s just not good enough. That’s just not an answer to the significant issue.