Joseph Hanna and Marilyn McClure-Demers Honored for Diversity Efforts with the Rick Palmore LCLD Alumni Award

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Hanna and McClure-Demers receive the highest honor given by the LCLD Alumni community of more than 2,600 diverse attorneys, which recognizes their exemplary work to increase diversity and inclusivity in the legal profession.


The Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD) announced the winners of its Sixth Annual Rick Palmore LCLD Alumni Award: Joseph Maron Hanna, chair of the Sports and Entertainment, and Retail and Hospitality practices at Goldberg Segalla in Buffalo, NY, and Marilyn McClure-Demers, Vice President, Associate General Counsel of Corporate Litigation & Discovery Management at Nationwide in Columbus, OH.

Named for Rick Palmore, whose career-long commitment to diversity in the legal profession led to the founding of LCLD in 2009, this award is the highest honor given by a growing community of more than 2,600 LCLD Alumni.

Winners are selected each year from nominees submitted by members of the LCLD community and chosen by a committee of their peers. The award recognizes the outstanding achievements, commitment, and leadership of the alumni of LCLD’s Fellows and Pathfinder programs, who continue to advance LCLD’s mission to create a legal profession that reflects the diversity of the nation it serves.

Rick Palmore will present Hanna and McClure-Demers with their awards at the 2020 LCLD Alumni Virtual Leadership Symposium on Friday, June 12, 2020.

“I have had the pleasure of getting to know both Joe and Marilyn since they were nominated as Fellows, and I can honestly say that the LCLD community would not be where it is today without their participation,” said Robert Grey, President of LCLD. “They have both shown an incredible personal dedication to building a more inclusive profession. As one of their nominators phrased it, they truly display an ‘extra-mile commitment’ in everything they do.”

A 2014 LCLD Fellow, Joseph Hanna founded the Goldberg Segalla’s Diversity Task Force in 2005 and is now the youngest person on the firm’s Management Committee, where he uses his position to advance diversity within the firm.

Committed to promoting inclusion in his community, Hanna also served as president of the Minority Bar Association of Western New York, where he created a diversity-focused internship program in collaboration with the University of Buffalo Law School that has since placed more than 200 students in clerkships in area courts and roles at both law firms and corporations, and launched Success in the City, an initiative that brings together community leaders to undo the effects of segregation on the business community and quality of life in Buffalo.

He also founded Bunkers in Baghdad, a non-profit organization that collects and sends new and used golf equipment to American troops and veterans around the world.

Hanna’s extensive contributions to the LCLD network include serving as the New York City Lead for LCLD’s Success in Law School Mentoring Program since 2017, serving on the LCLD Alumni Executive Council as Chair of the Outreach Committee, and organizing and leading many LCLD panel discussions, often co-hosting with large companies.

“During these troubling times, the spotlight on diversity and on organizations like LCLD is of paramount importance,” said Hanna. “The issues that are always at the forefront for us—diversity, inclusion, openness, and opportunity—have now captured the attention of the entire country and much of the world.”

Marilyn McClure-Demers is also a strong advocate for diversity in her community, both in West Virginia and Ohio. She is former president of the Ohio Women’s Bar Association and a past chair of United Way of Delaware County. She is also a founder of the Women’s Leadership Network.

Even before becoming an LCLD Fellow in 2014, McClure-Demers advocated for Nationwide to join LCLD; since then, she has led Nationwide to participate in all of LCLD’s programs, and has personally organized major events like the 2019 LCLD Pathfinder Second Meeting and a major Group Mentoring Event at the West Virginia University College of Law.

In addition to her many roles on the LCLD Alumni Executive Council, McClure-Demers has also established partnerships between LCLD and many West Virginia-based companies and law firms, as well as the West Virginia State Bar Association and the West Virginia University College of Law. By connecting hundreds of attorneys and law students, she has advanced LCLD’s mission of creating a more inclusive legal profession.

“It is truly my honor to receive the prestigious Rick Palmore LCLD Alumni Award representing corporate America, along with Joseph Hanna representing private law practice,” McClure-Demers said. “At a time when our country needs to see actions line up with words, any meaningful change requires all of us. I am extremely grateful and thank LCLD and Rick Palmore who have led the way. It is incredibly humbling, validating, and inspiring for LCLD alumni to determine my work worthy of this prestigious award.”    

For more information on LCLD, please contact Jessica Sabesan at or visit

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