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Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

The Massachusetts Bar Association acknowledges the impact of diversity, equity and inclusion in our legal profession for the benefits to our colleagues and clients. We have created this Diversity Equity and Inclusion (DEI) page to support our members in an effort to develop a more just and equitable profession. This page provides information and access to various DEI resources around the commonwealth and around the country, ensuring that our members have the provisions they need to support a more inclusive legal profession, where belonging applies to us all.

DEI Spotlight: Beau Kealy, Committee for Public Counsel Services

Beau Kealy photo

Each month, the Massachusetts Bar Association’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee (DEIC) will be highlighting diverse attorneys from within our community to recognize their achievements and contributions. This May, when we observe Mental Health Awareness Month, the DEIC is proud to shine a light on Beau Kealy (she/her), director of training at the Committee for Public Counsel Services (CPCS) Mental Health Litigation Division (MHLD).

As part of the CPCS Training Department, Kealy develops and manages various training opportunities for the private bar and staff attorneys. Kealy’s unit specifically trains private bar attorneys to represent clients in civil commitment and adult guardianship proceedings through initial certification programs and manages CLE programs for private attorneys and CPCS staff counsel. She works collaboratively and holistically across practice areas to support and train staff and private counsel to zealously defend clients with a trauma-informed and client-centered approach.

Prior to becoming training director in April 2023, Kealy was the first MHLD legal training attorney, staff counsel, in the MHLD Trial Support & Oversight Unit and a trial attorney in the Roxbury Commitment Unit, representing clients in involuntary commitment and authorization to treat proceedings and in appellate proceedings. Kealy began her time at CPCS in 2006 as a trial attorney in the Public Defender Division, Boston Trial Office, and later served as a panel attorney for the CPCS Post-Conviction and Appellate panel handling criminal appeals for over eight years. Before moving to Massachusetts, she clerked for Hon. Michael D. Mason, Circuit Court of Montgomery County, Maryland, and worked at a litigation firm representing criminal clients in state and federal courts in Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia.

A member of the MBA Criminal Justice Section Council since 2018, Kealy was delighted to be invited by the MBA DEIC to participate in the MBA/DEIC three-part webinar series, “Microaggressions in the Workplace: How to develop and maintain a diverse network and workplace by creating safe, healthy and supportive spaces.” Along with a tremendous group of faculty with whom she collaborated to reflect Mental Health Awareness Month in January 2023, she developed and presented part one of the series: A conversation about microaggressions affecting persons with mental illness & disabilities.

A part-time lecturer, Kealy is also a member of the clinical faculty at the Boston University School of Law, co-teaching and supervising students. She co-developed and established the Mental Health Litigation Practicum at Boston University School of Law in fall 2023 along with BU Law alum Kristin Lummus, her colleague at CPCS/MHLD.

Kealy received her J.D./M.S. in criminal justice from American University, Washington College of Law.

To review past DEI Spotlights, click here.

 

DEI Committee

The work of the Massachusetts Bar Association’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee (DEIC) is critical to the overall functioning of the MBA and all those in the legal profession. It is a great honor to be tasked with leading a phenomenal group of individuals who volunteer their time and talents to ensure that these important issues are addressed in the legal community.  

The DEIC seeks to develop, monitor, and promote diversity and inclusion initiatives to achieve a genuine, sustainable, diverse, and inclusive environment within the MBA, throughout its membership and in the legal community.

The DEIC works internally with MBA leadership, section councils, divisions and committees, as well as externally with the Supreme Judicial Court, Board of Bar Overseers, affinity bar associations, and other stakeholders to fulfill the following objectives:

  • Increase diversity, equity, and inclusion within the MBA’s membership and leadership, and within the legal profession (including within the judiciary)
  • Create strategies to increase diversity, equity, and inclusion practices generally
  • Increase awareness of inequities, systematic barriers, unacceptable behavior, and implicit/explicit bias, and experienced by members of the legal profession
  • Facilitate collaboration with, and support of, affinity bar associations
  • Encourage unity and community among all people, especially those currently and previously disenfranchised, within the legal profession.

Looking to get involved? If these goals and objectives are important to you, we are always seeking assistance and support for this work. Please reach out to the DEIC for additional information on how you can assist in ensuring a more diverse, inclusive and equitable legal profession.

Current DEI Committee Members

Affinity Bars