Key Findings From The Vault Law 2022 Diversity Survey-Part 2

Published: Oct 03, 2022

 Diversity       Law       Workplace Issues       

In our last post, Part 1, we detailed the findings in Section 1 of the Vault Law 2022 Diversity Survey report pertaining to firm policies, efforts, and initiatives in the DEI space. Today, we will walk through the key findings from Part 2, going over current law firm demographics.

Women make up 49% of associates at the average law firm, up from 47% last year, but representation declines as we move up the ladder. Women account for 39% of counsel/of counsel roles (up from 37% last year), 33% of non-equity partners (up from 31% last year), and 23% of equity partners (the same as last year). Women make up 56% of 2L summer associates (the same as last year) and 48% of all new attorneys (up from 47% last year). 41% of attorneys promoted to partner in calendar year 2021 (the period covered by this survey) were women, down slightly from 42% the prior year. However, the drop in representation is notably more severe when considering women of color, who represent 16% of all associates (up from 15% last year), 7% of counsel/of counsel roles (unchanged from last year), 6% of non-equity partners (unchanged from last year), and only 4% of equity partners (up slightly from 3% last year).

Minority lawyers make up 27% of associates (unchanged from last year), 13% of counsel/of counsel roles (unchanged from last year), 13% of non-equity partners (unchanged from last year), and 11% of equity partners (up slightly from 10% last year). To emphasize the contrast, white/Caucasian attorneys make up 71% of associates (down slightly from 72% last year), 86% of counsel/of counsel roles (unchanged from last year), 85% of non-equity partners (down slightly from 86% last year), and 89% of equity partners (down slightly from 90% last year). Minority lawyers make up 38% of 2L summer associates (up from 35% last year), 31% of all new attorneys (up slightly from 30% last year), and 20% of newly promoted partners (up from 18% last year).

Openly LGBTQ+ attorneys are 5% of the associate population (unchanged from last year), 9% of the summer associate population (up slightly from 8% last year), and under 3% each of counsel/of counsel roles, non-equity partners, and equity partners (unchanged from last year). Lawyers with disabilities make up 1.6% of associates (unchanged from last year), 1.6% of counsel/of counsel roles (down slightly from 1.9% last year), 2.1% of non-equity partners (down slightly from 2.5% last year), and 1.3% of equity partners (unchanged from last year). It is important to note that the likelihood of having a disability increases dramatically with age.

That covers all of the main findings from the 2022 survey. Please review the full survey findings here.

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Key Findings From The Vault Law 2022 Diversity Survey-Part 1

The results of the Vault Law 2022 diversity survey are in! Expect at least two posts dissecting our findings, but for this first one we'll just look at the highest-level takeaways in our general report.

The survey report is broken into two sections.