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Lisa Harris Receives 2023 Dianne Baquet Smith Diversity and Inclusion Award Winner


Sheppard Mullin is proud to recognize Lisa Maria Harris as the winner of this year's Dianne Baquet Smith Diversity and Inclusion Award. This award bestows the highest level of recognition to an individual at our firm for their outstanding achievements in promoting diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) through leadership, positive communication and involvement in diversity and inclusion efforts. We appreciate Lisa’s many contributions to help us recognize the value in diversity and motivate us to take action to create meaningful change. Thank you, Lisa for your commitment and efforts to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion at our firm and surrounding communities.

Lisa’s commitment is demonstrated by her numerous accomplishments and engagement in D&I programs inside and outside the firm. Lisa serves as a co-chair of the Diversity & Inclusion Attorney Network and an active participant in the Black Lawyers Network. In 2020, Lisa joined the firm’s inclusive Engagement Task Force, and in February of 2021, she began serving as the firm’s representative on the US Law Firm Group’s Diversity Equity and Inclusion Committee. Throughout her time at Sheppard Mullin, Lisa has served as a resource for and mentored several diverse associates, both formally and informally. She has brought her D&I commitment to the firm’s recruiting efforts by conducting on-campus interviews and interviewing at diversity job fairs. Her impact on the Orange County office has been particularly prolific because of her involvement in all of the office’s D&I programs, including serving on the office's D&I working group, supporting the Orange County Women Lawyers Group and its leadership, and supporting the local Diversity & Inclusion Attorney Network (DIAN) office leads.

Lisa was a Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD) fellow and has continued to participate in several of LCLD’s programs, including its 1L mentoring program. She served as a Facilitator for the Pathfinder Program, hosted several Compass Conversations which provide mentorship to junior attorneys, served as Vice Chair and Chair of the Outreach Committee on LCLD’s Alumni Executive Council, was the 2016 Fellows Class Liaison for two years, and is currently serving as Treasurer. Additionally, Lisa is on the Board of the Law Firm Anti-Racism Alliance and is currently the Co-Chair of the LFAA Employment Working Group which focuses on improving racial equity in the law. Lisa’s demonstrated leadership and extraordinary internal and external diversity and inclusion accomplishments extend beyond this list. 

Lisa is a partner in the firm's Labor and Employment practice group. She counsels and represents management in both employment and traditional labor matters and advises on diversity, equity and inclusion counseling and compliance. She regularly conducts and advises on high-level investigations and trains HR professionals on how to conduct such investigations internally. As a member of the firm’s ESG and Sustainability Industry Team, Lisa supports clients in addressing the social aspects of ESG through development and promotion of a healthy and equitable workplace. In addition to her experience as outside counsel, Lisa has several years of experience as in-house counsel both on a full-time and seconded basis. This experience gives her specific insight into the challenges and issues faced by in-house employment counsel and DEI teams.


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