The legal profession has made great strides over the last 15 years to address diversity and inclusion issues. But when it comes to representing plaintiffs in large, multidistrict litigations, minority attorneys have made much slower progress.
DiCello Levitt’s Diandra “Fu” Debrosse Zimmermann and Grant Patterson shared their perspective on diversity in MDL leadership with Westlaw Today.
In this article, Fu and Grant address the challenges to achieving diverse MDL leadership, while discussing how judicial acknowledgment of its importance, and the recent trend of leadership development committees to nurture the next generation of MDL leaders, are helping address the issues.
Fu made history last year as the first Black woman ever appointed to lead an MDL, when she was selected as Plaintiffs’ Co-Lead counsel in In re: Abbott Laboratories, et al., Preterm Infant Nutrition Products Liability Litigation (MDL 3026), a massive MDL related to the safety of one of the pharmaceutical giant’s baby formula products. It’s a rare feat for any lawyer, and rarer for Blacks and other minorities. She is also co-founder of Shades of Mass, alongside attorney Ben Crump, an organization dedicated to encouraging the appointment of attorneys of color in national mass tort litigations.
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