White & Case partner Bijal Vakil of the Firm's Silicon Valley office received an award from the Bar Association of San Francisco's Barristers Club at its annual "Diversity Awards" held on July 18, where his efforts to advancing diversity in the legal profession were honored and celebrated.
Bijal said, "It is the highest honor to be recognized by those organizations and individuals who served as role models and mentored me."
Bijal, who is of South Asian descent, is involved in outreach, mentoring and serving as a role model to young minorities in the legal profession. He is actively involved in White & Case's Diversity Initiative and sits on the boards of various South Asian and Asian American professional associations.
Commenting on his inspiration to be so involved, Bijal said, "These are communities that play an important role in my life. So it was natural to want to give back to these communities so that others could have similar opportunities."
Although progress has been made in supporting diversity in the legal profession—thanks to the efforts of Bijal and others like him who are dedicated to the advancement of minorities—Bijal remarked, "We have a lot more work to do. We have to work until we are at a point, that we don't have to recognize these types of efforts."
According to Bijal, "True diversity means that everyone has a seat at the table. The world is becoming much smaller and international cultures and peoples are a way of life if one wants to be relevant today. Diversity is a key component."
In addition to serving on White & Case's Diversity Committee, Bijal is also the Executive Partner of the Silicon Valley office, Chair of the Firm's Taiwan Country Practice and also serves on the Firm's Pro Bono Committee. How does he balance all of these responsibilities?
"When you have a passion, work seems like play," he replied.
Silicon Valley partner Bijal Vakil is honored with David Tsai of Perkins Coie LLP with a Diversity Award at the 4th Annual Barristers Club Diversity Reception for their efforts to increase awareness of diversity in the Bay Area Legal Community.