In the last decade, Aaron V. Burrell, a business lawyer with the Detroit office of Dickinson Wright and WMU-Cooley graduate, has become acutely aware of dynamic shifts in the way law is practiced. Burrell, who serves as co-chair of the firm’s diversity and litigation-training committees, and has a busy practice in complex commercial litigation, appellate law, and labor and employment law, is in a prime position to note changes in the legal arena.
"Gone are the days when law firms could overlook the growing diversity in society," said Burrell. "In fact, as a partner at Dickinson Wright I see that most of our clients now mandate diversity. The law is changing, and it’s changing at a rapid pace. Our clients do not want a law firm that hasn’t fully embraced the population that our clients serve."
CHANGE FOR THE GOOD
To Burrell, these changes are positive for those who are poised for the future of change.
"When I look at law schools that, quite frankly, are behind the times; those that have been slow to embrace diversity, they will ultimately find themselves irrelevant and obsolete,” he said.
"WMU-Cooley Law School has been a leader in minority enrollment and a forerunner for diversity for generations," declared Burrell. "The law school has been a trailblazer in women's enrollment for decades. WMU-Cooley is already in this space, and doing a great job as a leader in diversity, and it is well-positioned to thrive in this culture of inclusiveness."
Burrell is proud of how the legal profession is leading the way; where lawyers are starting to lead society in a better way. That reflection in the mirror started with law schools like WMU-Cooley, according to Burrell.
"Inclusiveness is vital in our justice system. As a result, we are obligated to make sure the legal profession represents and embodies the people to whom we are accountable."
Look for Aaron Burrell's full story in the June 2019 issue of Benchmark Alumni Magazine!