About the Diversity in Leadership Forum

The Diversity in Leadership Forum (DLF) began as the Women Leaders Forum (WLF) and was assembled to support the advancement of women leaders in the legal industry. In 2016, The Ackert Advisory, Key Group and KPMG LLP launched DLF, a program that provides a strategic support network, leadership development, and management techniques that empower female and diverse leaders in law.

Diversity is a Strength

Surveys indicate that “the legal profession has become the least diverse of all comparable professions.” Women comprise only 19% of equity partnership, and fewer than 5% of managing partners are female.  While equally qualified, women are held to higher expectations and many barriers hold them back from leadership.

Program Structure

The DLF network cultivates and supports the advancement of women leaders and spurs a catalyst for change within firms and within other organizations. DLF bridges framework, application and peer exchange. Unlike other professional development programs that offer only high-level education, DLF focuses on actionable concepts and meaningful execution throughout the year-long program.

The program provides a platform to:

  • Network with other legal leaders to share challenges, successes and strategies for leading a multi-million dollar enterprise in a hyper-competitive marketplace
  • Hone the management skills necessary to elevate your firm’s organizational structure, improve your firm’s culture, and leverage your team’s talent
  • Implement innovative and adaptable revenue-strengthening tactics

Example agenda topics:

  • Marketplace dynamics and challenges
  • Business development and networking
  • Organization change and cultural and motivational challenges
  • Compensation models
  • Acquisitions, integration and succession planning
  • Budgeting and ROI standards
  • Management challenges (e.g., retaining and advancing your best lawyers, communication and conflict management, leadership buy-in)
  • Cross-selling models
  • Time management
  • Legal and business innovation strategies

Sponsored by:

Sponsored by                   Sponsored by

“DLF uniquely combines peer networking with market insights, innovative strategies and practical concepts to take back to your firm and to your clients and ultimately affect positive change. The talent, passion and energy in the DLF is inspiring.”  

Program Format

Women Leaders Forum Co-Founder Kim Stuart Presents A 360-Degree Case For Diversity Everyone can and should play a part in fostering diversity in the workplace.

The Forum provides a hybrid of virtual sessions and an in-person retreat. Over a full year, Forum meetings occur quarterly:

  • Quarterly 75-minute conference calls
  • Annual 1½-day Leadership and Networking Retreat

Mastermind Calls

The calls follow a “Mastermind” format wherein topics of interest are proposed by members and discussed with the group, including presentations from industry thought leaders for strategic wisdom and perspective.

Leadership and Networking Retreat 
The Forum Retreat will be held in the Fall and will feature presentations from some of the top thought leaders in the industry, networking activities, and interactive roundtable sessions with Forum members and other legal leaders.  Each participant will take away specific insights, techniques and models that they can implement within their firms.  

Click here to view the 2019 Retreat Agenda
Click here to view the 2018 Retreat Agenda
Click here to view the 2017 Retreat agenda
“What an incredible group of women…each presentation was top notch…I gained valuable take-aways, and I look forward to our continued dialogue!”

Membership Cost

Because of this year’s generous sponsors, we are able to decrease the program cost.  The year-long membership fee is $2,950 which includes call and retreat facilitations, speaker fees scheduled meals, activities and materials.

Space is limited to keep the format of the Forum an intimate and dynamic setting.  Registrations will be accepted on a first-come, first-serve basis.  A block of rooms will be reserved at the retreat hotel at a special rate.  Participants are responsible for their own travel and hotel charges.

Faculty Emeritus

Click below to learn more about our presenters and Advisory Council.

Faculty Emeritus

“The Retreat presentations were terrific, starting with the keynote, which set the tone for an honest and empowering program.”

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“The Forum is affirming, thought-provoking, and inspiring.”