October 12, 2004, New York City, NY LAWFUEL – Law, law firm, leg…

October 12, 2004, New York City, NY LAWFUEL – Law, law firm, legal, attorney news–Reed Smith LLP, a top-25 international law firm was named Law Firm of the Year today by the Hispanic National Bar Association (HNBA) at its 29th annual convention in New York City.

“This is a singular honor for Reed Smith,” said Gregory Jordan, firmwide managing partner. “I believe selection as “firm of the year” underscores our long-standing and ongoing commitment to promote and celebrate diversity throughout the firm. Now more than ever, diversity makes good business, ethical and moral sense in the world of business and in the practice of law. We’re proud to earn this recognition for our efforts from the National Hispanic Bar Association, whom we consider an important partner in our work.”

The organization also acknowledged Reed Smith by naming a member of the firm as one of its Honorary Convention Co-Chairs. Reed Smith Diversity Chair Cathy Bissoon tapped Dan Mateo, a partner providing complex commercial litigation services in the firm’s Princeton, NJ, office, to represent the firm in this role at the Convention.

With the theme Unidos en Nueva York: United in New York, the convention is co-hosted by the Dominican Bar Association, the Latino Lawyers Association of Queens County and the Puerto Rican Bar Association. It brings together legal, political and business leaders to discuss issues affecting the Latino community and nation as well as the legal and business communities. Hundreds of the country’s most influential Hispanic leaders are in attendance.

According to Edguardo Ramos, a member of the Convention Planning Committee and a partner in the New York City office of Connecticut-based Day Berry & Howard, the HNBA does not select a firm of the year on an annual basis, only when a firm’s contribution to the Hispanic bar merits such recognition. Mr. Ramos said Reed Smith was selected this year for two principal reasons – its commitment to diversity and its continuing commitment in the HNBA.

“Reed Smith consistently demonstrates a very high level of internal commitment to diversity in terms of hiring and retaining lawyers of color” Mr. Ramos explained. “It has a very inclusive and welcoming environment, which makes it a wonderful place to work for diverse individuals. This is a firm that has achieved a good balance through proactive efforts.”

“In addition,” Ramos continued, “This year and in several past years, Reed Smith has made a major contribution to our annual convention that no other law firm has matched. Because HNBA is a relatively young organization, this financial support has enhanced our growth and allowed us to continue to prosper.”

“I am pleased to represent Reed Smith at this important nation meeting,” said Mr. Mateo. “As an Hispanic attorney, I know very well how important this organization’s work has been in advancing Hispanic concerns and issues to the forefront of the profession and the nation. With this country growing more diverse, the U.S. benefits enormously from this annual opportunity to publicly review Hispanic legal professionals’ perspectives.”

Mr. Mateo added that Reed Smith’s interest in promoting diversity is reflected in the firm’s substantial contributions to support the annual convention over the past three years.

“We work diligently at promoting and sustaining diversity year-round at Reed Smith,” said Cathy Bissoon, a partner in Reed Smith’s Pittsburgh office and the firm’s Director of Diversity. “Internal diversity and inclusiveness are important to us, and so is supporting the diversity efforts of the legal profession as a whole, through organizations such as the HNBA. Our selection as Law Firm of the Year confirms that we are on the right track in incorporating diversity as a core element of our firm’s future growth in all of its strategic initiatives.”

Reed Smith LLP, a leading global law firm with nearly 1,000 lawyers located in 14 U.S. and two U.K. cities, represents Fortune 100 as well as mid-market and emerging companies. Clients include technology companies and entrepreneurs, financial services firms, life sciences companies and health care providers and insurers, communications companies, manufacturers, universities, non-profit organizations, real estate developers, and municipalities throughout the United States and in 40 countries. For more information, visit www.reedsmith.com.

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