American Bar Association
Diversity and Inclusion

Diversity and Inclusion

Message from the Co-Chairs

The American Bar Association’s goals include eliminating bias and enhancing diversity in the legal profession. The ABA Real Property, Trust and Estate Section (“RPTE”) is committed to achieving this goal. RPTE’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee assists to implement the ABA and RPTE Section diversity goals and it is committed to assuring that RPTE is an open and inviting group for all persons, especially historically under-represented groups in the ABA.

This Committee participates in and encourages inclusion of diverse members in CLE program faculty, supports community outreach programs, and assists in measuring the Section’s diversity achievements. It also seeks to facilitate communications with diverse bar associations such as the Hispanic National Bar Association, National Bar Association, National Asian Pacific American Bar Association, National LGBT Bar Association, and National Native American Bar Association.

Please contact Amy M. Hess (ahess@UTK.EDU) or Kellye Clarke (, Co-Chairs, regarding the ABA-RPTE Diversity & Inclusion Committee.

Who We Are

The ABA Real Property Trust & Estate Section is committed to becoming the most open and inviting group in the American Bar Association. We welcome members from all backgrounds, experiences, and walks of life.

The goal of the Diversity and Inclusion Committee is to help make that a reality - for this Section to meet it commitment to the ABA, the legal profession, and the public we serve.

Goal III of the American Bar Association, was adopted in 2008. It prioritizes the promotion of "full and equal participation in the Association, our profession, and the justice system by all persons" and to eliminate bias in those areas. The Association's Goal IX promotes full inclusion of all people, while specifically mentioning historically underrepresented groups such as women, minorities, persons with disabilities, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender persons.

Our Real Property, Trust & Estate Section aims to create a stronger and better Section through implementation of the goals and initiatives outlined in its Diversity and Inclusion Committee's Strategic Plan approved in 2014.


2014 - 2016 Diversity Committee Strategic Plan

In January 2014, the RPTE Diversity Committee adopted a three-year Strategic Plan Click HERE to further the ABA’s Goal III – to eliminate bias and enhance diversity in the legal profession. Many thanks to Task Force Chair Dianne Coscarelli, and Task Force Members Elizabeth Ysla Leight and Marie Moore for their dedication and persistence in preparing the new Strategic Plan.

The members of the Diversity Committee encourage your review and participation in the Strategic Plan. We welcome an active discussion to implement the Strategic Plan and accomplish its four initiatives.

Legal Expert Author Pool

Are YOU interested in becoming a published author in leading national legal periodicals? Are YOU seeking to solidify your standing as an expert in your practice area? Then sign up for the ABA Center for Racial and Ethnic Diversity offers the Legal Expert Author Pool (LEAP). LEAP is as a new complimentary service designed for diverse lawyers and professionals. LEAP establishes and maintains a pool of authors who have the expertise and willingness to write for ABA periodicals; and facilitates. For more information, click HERE.


MARTIN M. SHENKMAN'S Religious Diversity Workshop Materials address the unique aspects of religion's impact on real estate and estate law. For overviews incorporating Religious Considerations into Planning and Drafting for Real Estate Transactions and estate planning, click HERE.

Find / Be A Speaker From The Diverse Community

Need a Speaker? Want to be a CLE presenter? The ABA has put our Section's speaker database on "Supercharge." Click "more"

Links To Diverse / Affinity Bar and Similar Groups

Looking for legal and other professional organizations focused on serving the needs of our diverse communities? Here are some helpful links!

Committee Meeting Minutes

Diversity Tools



Clarke, Kellye
Hess, Amy


Burruss, Timnetra
Lindsay-Ochoa, Elizabeth

Committee Roster  

Modified by Elizabeth Lindsay-Ochoa on May 11, 2018

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