The HSE Diversity Committee is a standing committee of the firm. The mission of the Committee is to help the firm achieve and maintain a level of diversity that reflects the demographics of the communities we serve, while at the same time fostering an inclusive environment of appreciation and respect. In furtherance of its mission, the Committee plans and implements firm-wide education, training and social activities, recommends and conducts compulsory diversity training programs, and acts as a resource for the firm. In addition, the Diversity Committee disseminates a community calendar of multicultural events and assists with recruiting and retention initiatives. Listed below are some of the most recent activities of the Diversity Committee.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Essay Contest. Every year, the firm sponsors the Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Student Essay Contest in the Rochester City School District. Students in the third, fourth and fifth grades are asked to submit essays about what Martin Luther King, Jr. Day means to them. Attorneys and staff at the firm will select the finalists and vote on the winning essays and one winner will be selected in each grade level. Each winner will receive a personal gift and gift card, and his or her classroom will receive a pizza party. The winner’s teacher will receive a classroom gift card as well.  Additional pizza parties will be raffled off for all participating classes-one for each grade level-and a Certificate of Appreciation will also be given to each participating class. The topic of this year’s essay contest is: Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are doing for others?’ Limit one submission per student, and essays must be in English, neatly printed or typed, original work, and by one author only. Essays must be returned to HSE and postmarked no later than Wednesday, December 16, 2015. Winners will be announced on January 11, 2016. Please click here to view contest rules.

Family Movie Night. The firm held its second annual movie night with a screening of an animated children’s movie designed to teach why it’s important to get to know those that appear different. This event was attended by 75 firm employees and their children.

Stand Against Racism.  HSE has participated in the YMCA’s “Stand Against Racism” for the past several years.  The goal of the Stand is to eliminate racism by raising awareness and encouraging conversation about the causes of racism.  On April 24, 2015, HSE held a screening of Rescue In The Philippines: Refuge From The Holocaust, a documentary that details a plan by Manuel Quezon, the first elected President of the Philippines; then-Col Dwight Eisenhower, an aide to Gen Douglas MacArthur; Paul McNutt, the U.S. High Commissioner for the Philippines; and the Frieder Brothers of Cincinnati, who owned cigar factories in the Philippines, to use the Philippines quasi-independent status to deliver over 1,300 Jews from Nazi Germany.

Spread the Word to End the Word. The firm joined Daystar for Medically Fragile Infants, the Golisano Foundation, and Special Olympics International to “Spread the Word to End the Word”—a program to raise the consciousness of society about the dehumanizing and hurtful effects of the word “retard(ed).”

Buffalo Office. Employees served food to underprivileged members of the Buffalo community at Buffalo’s Central Café.

Megan K. Dorritie
Diversity Committee Chair
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Kimberly I. Shimomura
Diversity Committee Co-Chair
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Andrea Annechino André Lindsay  Mary Ellen Schantz
Irina Antinoro Michael McEvoy (ex officio) Juanita Swann
David Archer Christopher Potash Thomas Tuori 
Emily Ayers Dawn Pratt  David Wilks
Iskra Bonanno Edward Premo  
Rebecca Graf Lynn Scott