Rekha Chiruvolu - Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer - Nixon Peabody LLP

Rekha Chiruvolu



As an experienced litigator now serving as Nixon Peabody’s firmwide Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer, Rekha Chiruvolu brings her career-spanning passion for diversity and inclusion in the legal profession to oversee the firm’s diversity initiatives. She develops trainings and other programming featuring inspiring thought leaders, and works with the firm’s practice groups and recruiting, professional development and business development teams to ensure that diversity and inclusion are woven into all aspects of the firm. Additionally, Rekha frequently assists firm clients with the development of their own diversity and inclusion programming, trainings and related initiatives.

Rekha is an attorney who practiced litigation for almost 10 years. During this time, she was very active in various minority bar associations, advocating for greater diversity and inclusion in the profession. Prior to joining Nixon Peabody, Rekha was the assistant director of the Office of Career Services at the University of California, Los Angeles, School of Law. In that role she worked closely with employers and various bar associations to implement programming and initiatives for diverse law students and graduates.

Rekha is also active in various diversity-related bar organizations. She is an active member of the South Asian Bar Association of North America, and has served on its Executive Committee for a number of years.

What do you see on the horizon?

We’re seeing a shift from diversity being the “right thing to do” to it being the “smart thing to do.” Studies show that diverse teams come up with better solutions to problems and are more innovative and creative. As a firm that prides itself on being forward-focused and sensing ahead, diversity and inclusion are key characteristics of the Nixon Peabody brand. We know that businesses that embrace diversity and practice inclusion will be better positioned to attract and retain talent and as a result will provide better overall services to their customers. Through its commitment to diversity and inclusion, Nixon Peabody is applying the collective intelligence of our many perspectives to create a more inclusive workplace and better serve our clients.

What do you focus on?

  • Diversity-related trainings and workshops
  • Unconscious bias awareness
  • Resource group strategic planning
  • Professional development for diverse attorneys
  • Inclusion-focused initiatives
  • Mentorship for diverse attorneys
  • Collaboration with clients on diversity-related programming

Presentations

  • “Leading Through Uncertainty: Prioritizing DEI Through Times of Transition,” Driving Diversity in Law & Leadership, New York, NY, May 2022
  • “Engaging Allies in the Advancement & Retention of Diverse In-House Professionals,” Association of Corporate Counsel, Northeast Chapter, Virtual Program, March 2022
  • “Gender Equity in the Post-Pandemic Workplace,” Nixon Peabody She Talks Law Podcast, March 2022
  • “Innovations in Equality: Advancing the Legal Workplace,” University of Texas at Austin School of Law, Center for Women in Law’s October 20 Ginsburg Initiative, Virtual Program, October 2021
  • “Workplace Inclusivity: Are We Gaining Ground or Just Talking About It?” Mount Saint Mary’s University, Center for the Advancement of Women, 2021 Women’s Leadership Conference, Virtual Program, September 2021
  • “DEI Roundtable,” South Asian Bar Association of North American Conference, Virtual Program, June 2021
  • “Promoting Allyship Between the South Asian and Black Communities in the Legal Profession,” South Asian Bar Association of Southern California, Virtual Program, August 2020
  • “How Better Corporate Allies Are Stronger Companies,” NP Connects: Live Webinar Series, August 2020
  • “Legal Department Nudges to Increase Outside Counsel Diversity,” Buying Legal Council, Virtual Program, May 2020
  • “Future of Boston: The Workforce,” Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce, Virtual Program, May 2020
  • “The Legal Angle: What are the Rules Here?” Beverly Willis Architecture Foundation, Los Angeles, CA, December 2019
  • “Improving Diversity and Inclusion in the #MeToo Era,” State Bar of Wisconsin Annual Meeting & Conference 2019, Green Bay, Wisconsin, June 2019
  • “Checking in: Are we Gaining Ground with Diversity and Inclusion or Just Talking About It?” Mount Saint Mary’s Report on the Status of Women and Girls in California™, Los Angeles, CA, March 2019
  • “Fostering Greater Inclusion in the #MeToo Era,” Nixon Peabody MCLE Marathon, Los Angeles, January 2019
  • “Power Up Your Diversity and Inclusion Committee: Best Practices and Innovative Approaches for Maximum Impact,” California Minority Counsel Program (CMCP), San Francisco, CA, October 2018
  • "#MeToo" CLE, Albany County Bar Association, Albany, NY, September 2018
  • "The Legal and Ethical Imperative for Pay Parity in Law Firms," First Chair Awards, Chicago, IL, August 2018
  • “Fostering Greater Inclusion in the #MeToo Era,” South Asian Bar Association (SABA) Annual Convention, New York City, June 2018
  • “Affinity Groups & Mentoring Initiatives: Balancing the Need to Belong with the Need to Grow,” Legal Diversity & Talent Management Forum, February 2018
  • “Inclusion in the #MeToo era,” Nixon Peabody Annual MCLE Seminar, San Francisco, January 2018
  • “Diversity is smart business,” Nixon Peabody Annual MCLE Seminar, San Francisco, January 2017

'Significant jump' in client inquiries leads to new diversity practice at Nixon Peabody

The American Lawyer | April 18, 2022

This article features the launch of NP’s cross-industry DEI Strategic Services group, developed to help clients advance comprehensive DEI strategies and address systemic challenges. The article quotes the group’s co-leaders, Chief Talent Officer and Providence Labor & Employment partner Stacie Collier, Washington, DC Corporate partner and Franchising & Distribution co-leader Kendal Tyre, and Chicago Labor & Employment counsel Kamau Coar, as well as Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer Rekha Chiruvolu.

Legal community is addressing diversity and attorney representation for minorities

New Hampshire Bar News | February 01, 2022

In this article covering diversity initiatives within the New Hampshire legal community, Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer Rekha Chiruvolu discusses a diversity internship program piloted by NP and four other law firms in the state.

Legal Briefs - Industry news from across New Hampshire

New Hampshire Business Review | January 19, 2022

This roundup of notable legal industry news features Rekha Chiruvolu’s elevation to Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer, while also highlighting Long Island Complex Commercial Disputes partner Joe Ortego’s role as Diversity Partner.

Morning briefing

Washington Business Journal | January 13, 2022

Rekha Chiruvolu’s elevation to Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer is featured in this roundup of noteworthy regional news, mentioning some highlights of NP’s DEI initiatives and background details from Rekha’s career.

Nixon Peabody elevates diversity director to C-suite

Bloomberg Law | January 11, 2022

The following article features the promotion of Rekha Chiruvolu to Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer, noting her points of focus for the DEI program and her close collaboration with Pro Bono & Social Impact Director Sharmaine Heng to expand our positive impact as a firm. Law360 also quotes Managing Partner and CEO Steve Zubiago on Rekha’s passion for DEI in the legal profession.

Nixon Peabody elevates diversity director to C-suite

Law360 | January 11, 2022

The following article features the promotion of Rekha Chiruvolu to Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer, noting her points of focus for the DEI program and her close collaboration with Pro Bono & Social Impact Director Sharmaine Heng to expand our positive impact as a firm. Law360 also quotes Managing Partner and CEO Steve Zubiago on Rekha’s passion for DEI in the legal profession.

Nixon Peabody elevates Chief Diversity Officer role as it looks to expand DEI programming

The American Lawyer | January 11, 2022

The following article features the promotion of Rekha Chiruvolu to Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer, noting her points of focus for the DEI program and her close collaboration with Pro Bono & Social Impact Director Sharmaine Heng to expand our positive impact as a firm. Law360 also quotes Managing Partner and CEO Steve Zubiago on Rekha’s passion for DEI in the legal profession.

What more can law firms do for LGBTQ+ Equality

World Trademark Review | October 14, 2021

This article, which features diversity and inclusion initiatives among law firms honored by Human Rights Watch in 2021 as “Best Place to Work for LGBTQ Equality,” highlights NP as an industry leader in this space. Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Director Rekha Chiruvolu is quoted on the importance of creating a mission statement and fostering a culture of open communication.

Can BigLaw fix its failures on work allocation?

American Lawyer | August 26, 2021

This article focusing on possible solutions to the implicit biases within work allocation processes at BigLaw firms quotes Director of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Rekha Chiruvolu on NP’s piloting of Diversity Lab’s Workflow app, and the technology’s positive impact on equitable and transparent decision-making within the firm.

New Mansfield program targets law firm work assignments and their inherent biases

American Lawyer | July 27, 2021

This article features NP as one of two law firms piloting the Mansfield Rule for Workflow app, which aims to remove inequity and implicit bias from work assignment processes. Rekha Chiruvolu, director of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, is quoted on the app’s functionality, how it can reduce biases when work is assigned, and its adoption among attorneys. Law.com and Bloomberg Law also picked up the article for their morning roundups.

Law firms embrace Juneteenth holiday as small step on race

Reuters Legal | June 01, 2021

In an article looking at how law firms are observing Juneteenth—commemorating the end of slavery in the United States—Diversity & Inclusion director Rekha Chiruvolu explains why it is important that we recognize the historic event in a meaningful way.

The message from the top is clear-Nixon Peabody DI director on importance of open communication

World Trademark Review | May 19, 2021

In this series highlighting top-ranking IP law firms that also received Human Rights Campaign’s “Best Place to Work for LGBTQ Equality” honors, Director of Diversity & Inclusion Rekha Chiruvolu discusses the communication and training that goes into upholding our firm’s D&I policies, and why a concise mission statement with a clear message from leadership is vital to creating a truly inclusive organization.

Ways forward from a watershed time

Chicago Daily Law Bulletin | April 30, 2021

Chicago office managing partner David Brown, of the Corporate group, and Director of Diversity & Inclusion Rekha Chiruvolu provide commentary in this article about NP’s diversity & inclusion initiatives and how the firm is working to combat racial injustice and systemic racism in our society.

What businesses should know and do about diversity and inclusion (podcast)

New Hampshire Business Review | April 15, 2021

Director of Diversity & Inclusion Rekha Chiruvolu joined the “Down to Business” podcast to discuss the current state of diversity in business and recent progress, NP’s D&I initiatives, and circumstances in New Hampshire that make diversity programs particularly relevant.

Nixon Peabody dedicated to advancing diversity within the firm

The Daily Record | February 24, 2021

This feature article on NP’s Diversity Challenge, which now includes up to 60 hours of billable hour credit toward diversity-related activities, extensively quotes Rochester office managing partner Jared Lusk and Director of Diversity & Inclusion Rekha Chiruvolu on Rochester’ s diversity-focused events and initiatives and NP’ s firmwide commitments to D&I.

Nixon Peabody offers billable hour credit for diversity work

Law360 | February 18, 2021

This article features the evolution of NP’ s Diversity Challenge, which now includes up to 60 hours of billable hour credit toward diversity-related activities. Washington, D.C. Corporate partner Kendal Tyre, who is credited with conceptualizing the Challenge back in 2010, is quoted on how seriously the firm takes diversity. Director of Diversity & amp;Inclusion Rekha Chiruvolu, based in Los Angeles, is mentioned for spearheading the Challenge. Bloomberg Law also mentioned the Challenge in their morning roundup of notable legal news “Wake Up Call.“

Higher Ambition: Moving the Needle on Law Firm Diversity

Washington Lawyer | June 05, 2020

This feature article on the Move the Needle Fund and law firm diversity spotlights Nixon Peabody’s MTN participation and quotes Washington, D.C. office managing partner Colette Dafoe, of the Affordable Housing & Real Estate group, and director of Diversity & Inclusion Rekha Chiruvolu on why it’s vitally important to increase diversity in the legal profession.

Nixon Peabody’s success in creating diversity comes from the top

Providence Business News | December 06, 2019

Managing partner and CEO Andrew Glincher, Director of Diversity and Inclusion Rekha Chiruvolu, and Providence Office Managing Partner Andrew Prescott provide commentary in this profile highlighting Nixon Peabody’s diversity and inclusion efforts. At Thursday’s Providence Business News Diversity & Inclusion Summit, NP was honored as the award winner in the Legal Services category.

Nixon Peabody is changing how it finds young talent

Boston Business Journal | October 14, 2019

This article, which quotes CEO and managing partner Andrew Glincher and Director of Diversity and Inclusion Rekha Chiruvolu, covers Nixon Peabody’s efforts to expand and diversify the pool of young talent by hiring fewer summer associates and brining on more year-round interns.

At Boston-area law firms, diversity is becoming a full-time job

Boston Business Journal | September 19, 2019

This article quotes Director of Diversity and Inclusion Rekha Chiruvolu on Nixon Peabody’s robust diversity-focused initiatives and mentions CEO and managing partner Andrew Glincher’s support for these programs. The article also notes that Rekha has been in the role since 2015, and many competitor firms in Boston are just now hiring for similar positions.

Buffalo’s law firms aim to make inclusion commonplace

Buffalo Business Journal | May 17, 2019

Director of Diversity and Inclusion Rekha Chiruvolu talks about Nixon Peabody’s diversity and inclusion initiatives, and the effort to integrate principles of inclusion into every aspect of the firm.

Contact

Rekha Chiruvolu

Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer

Washington, DC

Phone: 202-585-8605


Fax: 202-585-8080

Rutgers School of Law, J.D.

New York University, B.A.

California

New York

Back to top