Percentage of Women and Minority Lawyers Up Slightly for 2006 — Minority Women Lag Behind in Partnership Ranks

NALPnow! October 12, 2006

The demographic data collection for the NALP Directory of Legal Employers was revamped in 2006 to collect information on gender and race together. This new dimension allows NALP for the first time to answer the question of what percentage of lawyers (partners, associates, other lawyers, and summer associates) are minority men or minority women. Aggregate figures are shown in the table below.

Based on 1,524 offices/firms collectively representing over 132,000 lawyers and almost 12,000 summer associates, women represented 17.90% of partners, and minorities accounted for 5.0%. Both are increases from the 2005 figures of 17.29%, and 4.63%, respectively. Among associates, 44.33% were women and 16.72% were minorities. Both of these figures represent slight increases, although exact comparisons are not possible because of changes to the lawyer categories between 2005 and 2006.

Because of the new information collected, we now know that the majority of minority partners are men, while among minority associates and summer associates, women slightly outnumber men.

In the coming weeks, NALP will be publishing more demographic analyses from the 2006 Directory to show city by city information, as well as analyses for specific racial/ethnic minorities.

Total #

% Women

% Minority

% Minority

% Minority
Partners 60,459 17.90% 5.00% 1.48% 3.52%
Associates 59,709 44.33 16.72 9.16 7.56
All other lawyers 12,335 34.08 8.18 3.99 4.19
Summer Associates 11,660 46.67 23.05 12.40 10.65

Note: Figures based on 1,524 offices reporting information in the 2006 NALP Directory of Legal Employers.
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