As a “Foundation Five” title sponsor, Cassels Brock & Blackwell LLP was asked to fill out our diversity questionnaire. The purpose of this diversity questionnaire is to showcase a firm’s or organization’s commitment to the advancement of Black employees or members, as well as any other initiatives committed to equity, diversity, and inclusion.
By Ardy Mohajer, Partner and Chair
1. Describe your firm or organization’s field or practice areas. What are you known for in your community?
Cassels Brock & Blackwell LLP is a Canadian law firm focused on serving the transaction, advocacy, and advisory needs of the country’s most dynamic business sectors.
2. Name 3 values that embody the culture of your firm or organization.
At Cassels, we are versatile, genuine, and driven. We promise to make your success our priority. It’s a commitment to both the success of our clients, and also our determination to provide an exceptional, supportive work environment for our team.
3. Does your firm or organization conduct anonymous internal diversity surveys?
Yes, Cassels conducts a bi-yearly anonymous internal diversity survey. The last survey was conducted in 2021.
4. Describe a way your firm or organization actively supports, promotes, and advances your Black employees or Black members. If you do not have any Black employees or members, describe the steps you are taking to increase Black representation.
Cassels supports Black employees by encouraging the function and success of the Black Affinity Group’s partnership or support of external Black-led initiatives, such as incubation company, BETA-i, GBLOC, Groupe 3737 and the R.I.S.E Edutainment Legal Artivism Project with Randell Adjei. The Black Affinity Group also partners with internal Affinity Groups for events to express unity within the firm. The Cassels Inclusion and Diversity Committee has also partnered with the Black Affinity Group to develop and implement the Black-owned Small Business Grant, which includes individual donations from firm members, matched with an equivalent value of pro bono legal services.
5. Does your firm or organization offer diversity, unconscious bias, and/or anti-Black racism education and training?
Our Inclusion & Diversity Committee together with the firm’s professional resources department, and in consultation with the Black Affinity Group, has developed an Anti-Racism Series that was offered firmwide in 2020 and 2021. The series is to be completed by all employees.
6. Why should a prospective law student consider future employment or membership with your firm or organization?
The people at Cassels are what makes us an exceptional law firm. From the day they join the Cassels team, our students are an integral part of our future success; we view our students as the future partners of our firm. To make this vision a reality, we have designed a comprehensive student program built around the following three tenets: fostering an inclusive environment, providing meaningful work opportunities, and investing in professional growth.
7. List any other initiatives your firm or organization is involved in internally and/or externally that demonstrate your commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion.
Cassels sponsored a “Trailblazers in Canada” episode from Caribbean Vibrations debut on OMNI TV during Black History Month in February 2022, which celebrated the contributions of Jean Augustine & Denham Jolly, trailblazers from the Black Caribbean Diaspora, and the potential engagement with Unleash Forward for Allyship Training in the workplace.
8. Name one goal your firm or organization has to improve equity, diversity, and inclusion in 2022?
Cassels’ immediate goal is to partner with a third-party agency to help promote and provide opportunities for historically underrepresented groups (including BIPOC, 2SLGBTQ+, women, and people with disabilities).
9. What advice do you have for an aspiring law student?
Law school requires an incredible amount of dedication – but a career in law affords the opportunity to do challenging work and the chance to effect real change. Find your passion and research the programs, opportunities, and firms that interest you. For answers to questions about being a student at Cassels, visit us at cassels.com/join-us/FAQ.