Workplace #diversity can lead to innovation if managed well.

(Chicago Tribune) Attorney Steven Hunter wasn’t looking for a job when a recruiter encouraged him to interview at Quarles & Brady. The fact that the firm had an African-American chairman, John Daniels Jr., influenced his decision to take a position.

“That speaks volumes,” said Hunter, a senior associate in commercial litigation and one of five African-American attorneys in Quarles & Brady’s Chicago office. “You assume that a law firm that would promote an African-American to lead the entire firm embraces diversity.”

And it does, Daniels said. But the firm’s interest in establishing a diverse workplace goes beyond recruitment.

“It’s been demonstrated that by having exceptional people with diverse backgrounds, you get the best solutions,” Daniels said. “It’s essential to delivering the best service to the client.”

Hunter, a Chicago native who graduated from Brown University and Georgetown Law School, has found that not everyone feels the same way, and he has seen firsthand the bias sometimes attached to race.

“It’s definitely ingrained that if you want to do well, you have to be twice as good,” he said.

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