March 9, 2021 / Press Release

Ali named Outstanding Diversity Champion by Columbus Business First

Porter Wright’s Karim Ali was named an Outstanding Diversity Champion by Columbus Business First as part of their annual Diversity in Business Awards. The Outstanding Diversity Champion award recognizes those who have shown extraordinary initiative to promote diversity and inclusion within their organization and the community.

Karim, a partner in Porter Wright’s Corporate Department, is the firm’s first Chief Diversity Officer and leads all diversity, equity and inclusion efforts. In that role, he provides leadership and direction toward the firm’s goal of providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all lawyers and staff.

“Karim has always recognized that reaching true diversity, equity and inclusion doesn’t mean working to obtain just one milestone, signing up for one program or receiving one accolade,” said Joyce Edelman, fellow partner at Porter Wright and who nominated Karim for the Diversity in Business award. “He approaches these efforts with collaboration and drive and never shies away from sharing his story and experiences to enlighten others.”

Karim led the firm’s involvement in the “Mansfield Rule Pilot Program,” which is aimed at increasing the recruitment, retention and promotion of historically underrepresented groups in law firms, including women lawyers, lawyers of color, LGBTQ+ lawyers and lawyers with disabilities. In June 2020, Porter Wright earned “Mansfield Certification Plus” status for exceeding the goals set for by the program. The firm is currently taking part in the fourth cycle of the program.

Karim serves as Partner in Charge of Professional Personnel and leads firm-wide attorney recruitment, onboarding, mentoring and associate development strategy. Karim was also instrumental in establishing several employee resource groups including the Equality Alliance, providing support to LGBTQ+ attorneys and staff, the Diverse Attorney Network, providing support for ethnically diverse attorneys, and the Caregiver Resource Group, providing support for caregivers. 

In the community, Karim was selected in 2020 to be a commissioner on the Columbus Women’s Commission. He serves on the Board of Directors for the Law & Leadership Institute and is a Director’s Circle Member of the Wexner Center for the Arts.

All of the Diversity in Business honorees will be recognized during a virtual event on April 15, 2021.