On Tuesday, Savoy Magazine named Microsoft attorneys Bruce Jackson, Assistant General Counsel, Enterprise & Partner Group, and Neal Suggs, Vice President and Associate General Counsel, Worldwide Sales Group, to its “2015 Most Influential Black Lawyers” list. The list is comprised of the “best of the best” black lawyers in top law firms and corporate counsel from Fortune 1000 companies.
Both Jackson and Suggs are accomplished attorneys who have distinguished themselves at Microsoft, and also in the community. A brief review of their professional work makes it clear that the list would have been incomplete without their inclusion.
“Microsoft’s legal department has long believed that work in improving diversity within the legal profession, and in our own legal department, is core to our values. It is also imperative for the continued success of our company, and even our democracy,” said Mary Snapp, Deputy General Counsel and executive sponsor of the LCA Diversity and Inclusion team. “Bruce and Neal have both made tremendous contributions toward achieving our goals, and we’re incredibly proud to have them as colleagues.”
Jackson has been with Microsoft since 2000, and has been a member of Microsoft’s Law and Corporate Affairs (LCA) diversity committee since 2001. He played a pivotal role in launching the first-ever LCA Law Student Intellectual Property Summit, which encouraged women and minority law students to pursue careers in intellectual property law. Jackson’s outstanding work, commitment and contributions have previously earned him the 2011 Diversity Award from Microsoft. He is also currently serves on the advisory council of the National Association for Women and Minority Owned Law Firms, and the boards of the African American Chamber of Commerce for Westchester County and the Henry Street Settlement in New York.
“Receiving this honor is humbling to say the least, and it’s an extraordinary privilege to work with a company that values Diversity and Inclusion. I’ve been blessed to have this platform as an Attorney and beyond to impact today and tomorrow’s workforce,” Jackson said. “For me, it is a personal obligation. Diversity in leadership has a transformative power because it promotes collaboration, innovation and contributions from every corner of the globe. Corporations thrive even more while remaining culturally relevant and doors are never closed for future change makers.”
Neal Suggs has worked with critical business divisions ranging from licensing to Xbox to commercial sales over his 12-year career with Microsoft. While he is now the lead attorney for commercial sales, he still makes time to support the legal diversity initiatives he created while serving as the LCA Diversity Lead from 2007 to 2012. In that role, Suggs was a key contributor to the development of the Microsoft Law Firm Diversity Program, which incentivizes outside counsel to demonstrate their commitment to diversity. To date, the program has resulted in a 12.9 percent increase in the percentage of hours worked by diverse attorneys at firms on Microsoft hours.
“It is a tremendous honor for my career to be recognized this way by Savoy Magazine and Microsoft,” said Suggs. “I appreciate the opportunities Microsoft has made available to me, and I continue to work to make sure others have those same opportunities. It is always humbling to receive recognition; I’m just happy to be able to give back in the way I have been helped.”
Microsoft has a long standing commitment to diversity and inclusion, including attracting, recruiting and retaining diverse talent in the tech space and we’re more focused than ever on this issue .
To learn more about Microsoft’s Legal Diversity efforts, please visit http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/legal/lcadiversity/lawfirmdiversityprogram.aspx.
To learn more about Microsoft Global Diversity and Inclusion, please visit http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/diversity/default.aspx#fbid=pt4nHYP09Qb