Mintz Taps Litigation Member and Firm Leader for New Role to Advance Comprehensive Diversity and Inclusion Goals
Mintz is pleased to announce that it has appointed Litigation Member Narges M. Kakalia as the firm’s first-ever Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, effective November 2. After a diligent search process, Ms. Kakalia was selected for her enduring commitment to upholding the ideals of social justice and promoting diversity and inclusion at Mintz and in the legal profession, as demonstrated by her leadership roles on various firm committees and affinity groups, as well as in the community.
An immigrant woman of color, Ms. Kakalia has served as the firm’s first Ombudsperson; holds a seat on the five-member Steering Committee of the Women’s Initiative, which sponsors numerous professional, networking, and social events aimed at supporting and enriching the lives of the firm’s female attorneys; is a leader of MIATTY, the firm’s affinity group for minority attorneys and senior professionals; and has served as Vice Chair of the firm’s Pro Bono Committee for over a decade. Over the years, Ms. Kakalia also has served as a stalwart mentor for younger attorneys at the firm, particularly for those from diverse backgrounds. Outside of her firm leadership roles and robust legal practice, she serves as Vice-Chair of the Board of Directors of Womankind, an organization that works with survivors of gender-based violence to rise above trauma and build a path to healing. Most recently, in response to the nationwide social justice movement to combat systemic racism and racial inequity, she has led conversations on how to drive change internally at Mintz, as well as in the legal community, and has helped spearhead the firm’s recent Mintz Driving Change antiracism initiative.
“Narges is a visionary leader and an exceptional choice for our first Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion,” said Mintz Managing Member Bob Bodian. “Appointing an accomplished professional and tireless advocate for diverse groups to this position was integral to our goal of leading from the front in taking thoughtful and aggressive steps to level the playing field in the practice of law. I look forward to collaborating with Narges as she leads the firm forward through this critical work.”
Over the past six months in particular, Mintz has renewed its longstanding commitment to increasing diversity and inclusion at the firm and in the legal community, and driving greater civic engagement at all levels. In June, Mr. Bodian announced that all Mintz attorneys and professional staff will be provided a paid day off on Election Day, November 3, to vote, and to engage in other related activities. The management decision, which was highlighted in The American Lawyer, has encouraged other law firm leaders to follow suit, driving a growing, industry-wide movement. In addition to taking civic action and casting ballots, the Mintz Driving Change initiative features a multi-step plan, which includes a firm goal of increasing the number of Black attorneys by 50% by June 30, 2022, examining firm processes and procedures from an antiracism lens, and continuing to undertake social justice reform work on a pro bono basis, among several other actions.
Mintz is consistently recognized as a diversity leader in the legal profession. Most recently, Mr. Bodian was honored with the Outstanding Ally Award from Chambers Diversity & Inclusion Awards: North America 2020 for his remarkable commitment to diversity and inclusion in the legal profession as an ally for diverse groups. Ms. Kakalia was also shortlisted for the 2020 Diversity & Inclusion Lawyer of the Year Award.
More information on Mintz’s dedication to diversity is available here.