Leadership Council on Legal Diversity Honors Kevin Gooch with the Rick Palmore Alumni Award
ATLANTA (June 18, 2021) – The Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD) awarded Holland & Knight Partner Kevin Gooch with its seventh annual Rick Palmore LCLD Alumni Award at its Alumni Virtual Leadership Symposium on June 17. Named for LCLD's founder, the Rick Palmore LCLD Alumni Award recognizes the outstanding achievements, commitment and leadership of alumni who have left a lasting impact on their legal communities and the profession at large. This is the highest honor in the 3,200-member LCLD alumni community.
Each year, nominees are submitted by LCLD alumni and members, with winners chosen by a committee of their peers. They are selected on the basis of their influence and impact on the legal profession and furtherance of LCLD's mission.
“Rick Palmore is a legend and inspiration who had the courage to push our profession to strive to be at its best for all attorneys," said Mr. Gooch. "I am determined to follow in his footsteps and continue his work in changing the status quo by advancing diversity, inclusion and equity within our profession."
Mr. Gooch, a 2015 LCLD Fellow, is a financial services partner in Holland & Knight's Atlanta office. Named one of the “500 Most Influential Atlantans” by Atlanta Magazine this year, Mr. Gooch is widely known for his advocacy in the community.
Mr. Gooch recently wrapped up a two-year term as chairman of the board of 100 Black Men of Atlanta Inc., a 35-year-old organization that supports African American youths through mentorship, character development, academic support, career readiness and community service. As the group's youngest chairman since its founding in 1986, Mr. Gooch has implemented various initiatives including the Career Pipeline program, a 10-week professional development program for college students, a virtual Career Discovery Day, 100 Reads, an Entrepreneurs Training program and a Legal Guild to build a pipeline of diverse attorneys. One of the most popular programs initiated by Mr. Gooch is the "Let's Talk Leadership" series where he interviews C-suite executives about their leadership journey, which is available on the organization's YouTube channel.
Since 2019, when Mr. Gooch became chairman of the organization, the 100 Black Men of Atlanta, Inc. has committed or awarded more than $500,000 to deserving Atlanta area students through Project Success, a tuition-assistance program. He has led the organization to contribute more than one million dollars annually in mentorship and other enrichment programs, including Saturday School, 100 Robotics Alliance, Collegiate 100 and Emerging 100.
Mr. Gooch is also a member of the Carter Center's Board of Councilors, vice chair of the Decide DeKalb Development Authority, and is on the board of directors for the University of Georgia Alumni Association.
Throughout his career, Mr. Gooch has served on various firms' diversity committees and engages them in the work of 100 Black Men of Atlanta. He is a consistent mentor to young lawyers, and has even seen a high school mentee grow from an internship position to graduating from Mr. Gooch's alma mater, the University of Georgia School of Law. He plans to continue his work of developing high-potential young professionals into the leaders of tomorrow.
Mr. Gooch is highly active in the LCLD community as well and attends Learning Experiences and Alumni Leadership Symposiums, speaks at programs and coordinates local events for Atlanta-based LCLD Alumni as the Atlanta City Lead.