July 7, 2023

A Series Introduction from LGBTQ Affinity Group Co-Chair Dianne Phillips

Pride Month Spotlight Series

Holland & Knight's Diversity Council and LGBTQ Affinity Group were proud to celebrate Pride Month and engage in the conversation for equality and embrace our diverse community by coming together without exception and supporting everyone, including our LGBTQ colleagues. During Pride Month, we took time to reflect on how we could better support our LGBTQ colleagues by sitting down with attorneys and staff to have important conversations about what this month and embracing their identity means to them. We will be presenting a weekly video series showcasing some of these conversations. We hope that the stories conveyed in these videos help advance dialogue around Pride Month as well as lead to further discussions of how we can be better allies to our LGBTQ friends, family and colleagues.

In this video, LGBTQ Affinity Group Co-Chair Dianne R. Phillips, a partner in our Boston office, introduces the series and speaks about the affinity group's growth and efforts to support the LGBTQ community.

More Videos in this Series

Episode 1: A Series Introduction from LGBTQ Affinity Group Co-Chair Dianne Phillips (You are currently viewing Episode 1)

Episode 2: Karl Lott Highlights the Beauty of Diversity and the Challenges the LGBTQ Community Faces

Episode 3: Curran Butcher Shares the Power of Being True to Yourself and Finding Community

Episode 4: Lara M. Rios Shares the Role We All Play in Creating an Inclusive Environment

Episode 5: Brian Goodrich and Katherine Skeele Share the Strength That Came from Being Out in Their Professional Lives 

Dianne Phillips: Hi, everyone. My name is Dianne Phillips, and I'm very proud to be the co-chair of the Holland & Knight LGBTQ Affinity Group. I want to spend a minute to talk about Holland & Knight's commitment to LGBTQ employees and its overall commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion. I joined Holland & Knight in 1998, and at that time we created an LGBTQ work group that later grew into the affinity group we are now. At that time, we were about a handful of openly gay lawyers, and now we're over 50 self-identified LGBTQ colleagues. That has been a result of Holland Knight's strength and its support of all of its diverse colleagues, but particularly LGBTQ peoples. For example, Holland & Knight was one of the first law firms in the country to offer domestic partner benefits, some of which I benefited from in 1998 when I joined. Holland & Knight also was one of the first law firms to offer full transition health care for transgender employees and create transition protocols to support our employees who are transgender. In addition, we had COBRA benefits at a time when the Defense of Marriage Act precluded those coverage. So, all of these helpful policies have really supported the LGBTQ Affinity Group, and I am proud to have been part of that process. We also have joined civil rights organizations supporting LGBTQ people, including the Human Rights Campaign's Business Coalition, Equality Florida and Texas Competes. And you'll see I'm wearing my Equality Florida pin because that is an important aspect of what we are focused on.

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