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The Bar Association of San Francisco Names Diversity Director

May 2, 2007 - San Francisco - After an exhaustive five-month search, The Bar Association of San Francisco (BASF) is pleased to announce the hiring of attorney/mediator/arbitrator Yolanda Jackson as its diversity director. BASF created this new position in December 2006 and received an overwhelming number of applications. After a thorough evaluation of candidates from across the nation, BASF concluded that Jackson was the ideal person for the position.

Jackson brings a wealth of experience in diversity work and has long-standing contacts in the community that will greatly benefit BASF in its goal of increasing and enhancing its programs that work to expand recruiting and retention in the San Francisco legal community.

She has served in leadership capacities on several boards, including the Ethnic Minority Relations Committee of the State Bar of California, the Charles Houston Bar Association, the California Association of Black Lawyers, the National Bar Association and the American Bar Association Section of Dispute Resolution's Diversity Committee.

Jackson's track record working in the private sector, formerly as senior director at Fireman's Fund and currently, in private practice as a mediator and diversity consultant designing diversity programs and advocating for diversity in the corporate and legal communities, puts her in a uniquely qualified position to be an effective spokesperson and advocate for BASF's diversity and pipeline programs.

"Yolanda has deep experience in diversity work and familiarity with our legal community that will serve her well. She has a track record of working in-house as a director of litigation as well as private practice, two sectors that will receive much-needed focus. We found the right person to lead this most important part of our work at BASF," says BASF President Nanci Clarence.

The creation of the diversity director position was an important step for the organization. BASF has long served as a national leader in efforts to achieve equal opportunity in the legal profession for women, racial and ethnic minorities, LGBT lawyers, and lawyers with disabilities. A pivotal 1987 study, commissioned by the University of California, discovered "profound disadvantages within the city's legal workplaces." Acting upon this report, in 1990 the BASF Board of Directors adopted Goals and Timetables for Minority Hiring and Advancement. These goals and timetables have become the cornerstone of BASF's diversity efforts over the past 17 years, and have led to the establishment of numerous diversity and pipeline programs within the organization.

Prior to joining BASF, Jackson worked as a consultant and mediator/arbitrator for her own company - Jackson Alternative Dispute Resolution Group. She serves as an adjunct instructor at U.C. Hastings College of the Law and prior to that served as senior director at Fireman's Fund Insurance Company. Jackson received her Bachelor of Arts degree from UCLA, her law degree from Empire School of Law in Santa Rosa and she also holds a certificate in Mediation from U.C. Berkeley.

The Bar Association of San Francisco (BASF) is a nonprofit voluntary membership organization of over 8,000 attorneys, law students and legal professionals in the Bay Area. Founded in 1872, BASF is one of the largest and most dynamic metropolitan bar associations in the U.S., with a long and distinguished record of community action, public service and service to the legal profession.

Questions about media relations, BASF issues currently in the news, San Francisco Attorney magazine, marketing and communications:

Ann Murphy, Director of Communications & Public Relations
(415) 782-9000 x8792

For general communications inquiries:

Sayre Happich, Assistant Director of Communications & Public Relations
(415) 782-9000 x8104