Fostering an inclusive community

We are committed to fostering an inclusive environment that attracts, engages, and retains the best possible talent

Female and male smiling in work meeting

Our Vision

At Foley Hoag, we believe our people are our greatest asset. We are committed to fostering an inclusive environment that attracts, engages, and retains the best possible talent. Our diversity of experiences, backgrounds, locations, viewpoints, and ideas differentiates us as an employer of choice and helps us foster a welcoming and inclusive environment for all.

Foley Hoag's commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion traces its roots to the founding of the firm in 1943. Henry Foley and Garrett Hoag were determined to hire the very best lawyers, based entirely on individual merit and without exclusion — an attitude that set them very much apart from others in the Boston legal community of that era.

Those twin traditions of excellence and inclusiveness have remained guiding forces in the firm's culture. Lawyers of different backgrounds, skills, and experiences bring diversity of thought and perspective to our firm, enriching the culture and enhancing the quality of our work.

As of June 30, 2022, women represent 41% of our legal workforce, and 26% of our attorneys are people of color. At Foley Hoag, we acknowledge that we have a long way to go and are fully committed to continuing to move the needle forward, every day.
DE&I Overview
Learn more about our Diversity, Equity & Inclusion efforts at Foley Hoag
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Celebrating Our Culture
What makes the culture at Foley Hoag so special? Hear directly from our people in our latest video.

Committee on Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

The Foley Hoag Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee actively works with the department and firm management acts as an advisory body to firm management and the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Department on matters regarding diversity, equity, and inclusion across the firm. Co-chaired by the firm's Director of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion and one the Co-Managing Partners, the Committee is comprised of lawyers and business professionals of varying backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives.

DE&I Department together with the DE&I Committee hosts bi-monthly DE&I Coffee Chats. These meetings are 60-minute introductions for all new hires (business services professionals and legal personnel) to learn more about our team, our department's initiatives, and our firm's commitment to DE&I.

Committee Members

Select DE&I Accolades

CharlesBeard.jpgAs part of our longstanding commitment to DE&I, we proudly sponsor an annual diversity fellowship for outstanding first-year law students from backgrounds that are historically underrepresented in the legal profession. This fellowship is named in memory of our former partner, Charles Beard, the first Black lawyer promoted to partner at a major Boston law firm.

Fellowship recipients receive a paid summer associate position in our Boston office and an award of up to $45,000 in law school tuition assistance. The award is paid in three installments: $15,000 upon completion of the 1L summer with the firm; $15,000 upon completion of the 2L summer with the firm; and the remaining $15,000 upon joining the firm as a full-time associate. Click here for online application.

The DE&I Department also hosts a professional development summer program called ELEVATE for summer fellows from programs such as the Charles J. Beard II Diversity Fellowship, Seizing Every Opportunity (SEO) and Law in Tech Diversity Collaborative. Throughout the summer, the department holds professional development brown bag lunches on a variety of topics, such as networking, building personal brands, mental health and resiliency practices, imposter syndrome, and more.

We are currently accepting applications for our 2023 Charles J. Beard, II Diversity Fellowship. Apply Now

We believe people have the best chance of success when they feel valued, respected and included.  At Foley Hoag, we want everyone to have an equal opportunity to succeed.  To accomplish this, we maintain practices and resources to support all who work at our firm. 

We have established a number of affinity groups dedicated to expanding awareness about racial and social issues related to diversity, equity and inclusion matters.

Our affinity groups are:

  • Agents of Change
  • Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) Affinity Group
  • Black Attorneys Collective (BLAC)
  • La AsociaciĆ³n Latina
  • Women Associates Group
  • Women's Forum
  • Womxn of Color

GettyImages-1250430888.jpgAs part of our ongoing LGBTQ+ inclusion efforts, we understand the importance of creating affirming practices around sexual orientation, gender identity and expression. With this in mind, we have implemented processes and procedures for our people to voluntarily self-identify and disclose pronouns during onboarding and their tenure at the firm. Individuals may also publicly display pronouns in their profiles, which are accessible via our firm’s intranet. Additionally, we have collaborated with a third-party vendor to update business card templates to include the use of pronouns. While doing so is voluntary, we encourage everyone to participate as we work together to affirm differences, celebrate diversity and cultivate inclusivity.

Foley Hoag is Mansfield 5.0 certified. Managed by Diversity Lab, the Mansfield Rule Certification program is named after Arabella Mansfield, the first woman lawyer in the United States, with a stated goal of bossting the representation of historically underrepresented lawyers in law firm leadership. The Mansfield Rule has become the standard by which law firms track, measure, and report progress with respect to diversity, equity and inclusion.

Mansfield5.pngTo be Mansfield certified, a firm must affirmatively consider at least 30% percent women, lawyers from underrepresented racial/ethnic groups, lawyers with disabilities, or LGBTQ+ lawyers for top leadership roles, senior-level lateral hiring, promotions into the equity partnership, and meaningful participation in client pitches.

The Mansfield Rule process has also informed our recruitment and promotion efforts as part of the firm’s strategic plan for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion. We are proud that the firm has met and exceeded the Mansfield 5.0 certification requirements for 2022. We are continuing our DE&I efforts by participating in the Mansfield Rule Certification 6.0 program.

We are pleased to reiterate our strong support of the Black Lives Matter movement and ongoing efforts to attain racial justice throughout the U.S. and the cities in which we work and live. In recent years, we have witnessed a heightened awareness of and response to systemic racism against Black Americans, the AAPI community and other underrepresented groups. As a result, we’ve reevaluated our firm’s role in society. 

We believe that lawyers have a unique responsibility to ensure everyone is afforded equal justice under the law. We have instituted several important initiatives in response to police brutality, hate, racial and social injustice. We continue to fight for equality and provide opportunities for all communities to thrive.

  • Juneteenth Instituted as a Permanent Firm Holiday: In June 2020, the firm announced its intention to recognize Juneteenth (June 19) as an annual firm holiday. Its recognition signifies a degree of reckoning with America’s history that is long overdue.
  • Counseling and Support: We have made available free trauma/counseling support to our colleagues impacted by recent events of police brutality and hate crimes in our nation.
  • Foley Hoag Foundation: The firm has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Foley Hoag Foundation to support two special and immediate rounds of micro-grants to community organizations centered on Black and AAPI racial justice work in Boston, Washington D.C. and New York. We use our social media platforms to publicize these organizations and the critical work they do. 

At Foley Hoag, we believe investing in our people is a winning proposition for everyone involved. We provide a number of innovative learning and development opportunities, educational events, programs and resources to engage, support and celebrate attorneys and business services professionals of historically underrepresented backgrounds. When our legal and business services professionals are empowered, they more easily find success and we find success through them.

Our formal mentoring programs include:

  • ELEVATE, a program for all incoming first-year associates and laterals that pairs new attorneys with mentors from the DE&I Committee. Designated mentors help bolster the internal support network of new associates and laterals while providing them with career advice recommendations to aid them throughout their journey at the firm. The Department of DE&I and Committee on DE&I designed this program to ensure that our future leaders enjoy a successful integration to Foley Hoag.
  • The Women’s Mentoring Circles. These are the heart of the Women’s Forum, which aims to cultivate women leaders. The Forum is focused on career advancement and business development activities for women attorneys. The Women’s Circles were launched in 2013 to help women attorneys build community through mentorship and expanding internal networks. They have evolved into spaces in which trusted colleagues can support one another, offer guidance and discuss both professional and personal matters in a confidential setting. Membership is voluntary and open to all attorneys at the firm who identify as women or non-binary.
Foley Hoag community members also are afforded a number of in-house trainings and interactive workshops, including:
  • Two virtual, on-demand DE&I trainings for all firm personnel, focusing on the basics of DE&I, identity and belonging, inclusive communication, power, privilege and unconscious bias
  • Unconscious Bias for Interviewers
  • Bystander Intervention to Stop Anti-Asian and Xenophobic Harassment
  • Interrupting Unconscious Bias in Performance Reviews
  • LGBTQ+ 101
  • Understanding Religious Diversity in the Workplace
We hold a DE&I Speaker Series, in which we invite experts and activists to the Foley Hoag community for firm-wide learning and development opportunities.

Our firm honors and commemorates key diversity milestones such as Black History Month, International Women's Day, Asian American Pacific Islander History Month, LGBTQ+ Pride Month, Disability Pride Month and Hispanic/Latinx Heritage Month.

We launched a new unlimited credit policy for DE&I and legal recruiting activities. This policy is similar to our current pro bono policy and encourages everyone to participate and be part of our journey.

Foley Hoag is committed to a culture and atmosphere of mutual respect in the workplace. We strive to create a climate of inclusiveness where all individuals can thrive. We do this by working to attract, train and promote outstanding lawyers from all backgrounds, perspectives and talents.

In 2018, the firm launched REACH, our designated diversity mentoring program for 1L law students from underrepresented backgrounds. Our intent behind this program is to extend our outreach and invest in the development of our future leaders. Through REACH, our attorneys have made impactful relationships with many first-generation law students. We support our REACH mentees with engagement opportunities such as in-person coffee chats, DE&I Speaker Series events and DE&I-centered celebrations and communications.

Foley Hoag is also proud to partner with programs that help develop the next generation of attorneys from underrepresented backgrounds. These programs include the Sponsors for Educational Opportunity (SEO) Law Fellowship and the Law in Tech Diversity Collaborative (LiTD).

Finally, we regularly sponsor and participate in conferences and job fairs organized by law student groups and other organizations dedicated to addressing recruitment, retention and promotion of underrepresented groups in the legal industry.

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