Ben Wilson has been affectionately described as the dean of black partners within Big Law. But that title doesn’t begin to do justice to the Beveridge & Diamond chairman, who announced his retirement last month after 45 years in the legal profession.
Wilson has mentored generations of Black and other diverse attorneys. And, in 2008, founded the Diverse Partners Network, which he intends to continue to lead after retirement, renamed as the Diverse Lawyers Network. He is also the founder of the African American Managing Partners Network, tight-knit network of African American leaders of major law firms that began in 2009.
Lisa Helem, Bloomberg Law’s Executive Editor for Strategic Initiatives, spoke with Wilson this week for nearly an hour about leadership, the state of diversity in the legal profession and the Civil Rights attorneys who motivated him to seek out the law as a career.
We’re going to air an extended version of this interview later this month as a special episode of our award-winning “Black Lawyers Speak” series, hosted on our sister podcast, UnCommon Law But today, for our weekly news podcast, “On The Merits,” we present a preview from Lisa and Ben’s conversation. Wilson speaks about his upbringing in the segregated South and the work needed in order for the legal industry to fully diversify.
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