Case Name: Suhr v. Dietrich

Type of Case: Equality Under the Law

Court: U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin 

Filed On: December 19, 2023

Current Status: Filed in Eastern District of Wisconsin on December 19, 2023


December 19, 2023 | WILL’s client must pay mandatory and annual State Bar dues, which not only fund this internship program, but also other programs and communications that discriminate against him and thousands of other Wisconsin attorneys.

Additional Background: Some of Wisconsin’s largest companies, law firms, and government agencies participate in the “Diversity Clerkship Program,” program, including the following: Fiserv, GE Healthcare, Northwestern Mutual Insurance, Stafford Rosenbaum LLP, Alliant Energy, Froedtert Health, Kohler Company, the City of Madison, and the Wisconsin Department of Justice. The University of Wisconsin, which has recently been involved in a public dispute with the Legislature over its DEI program, facilitates the program.
Using the funds of due-paying members to provide invaluable internship experiences to only some law students based on race is a violation of the Constitution and the recent precedent set in Students for Fair Admissions v. Harvard. Judge Carl Ashley, who has promoted the program on behalf of the Bar, even stated that he was aware diversity programs like Diversity Clerkship Program could face legal challenges.

Harvard Decision Has Changed the Legal Landscape: The United States Supreme Court recently decided that colleges and universities may no longer use race as a factor in admissions. This practice, commonly called “affirmative action,” was declared unconstitutional in Students for Fair Admissions v. Harvard. That decision, however, has much broader implications: it confirms that federal civil rights laws demand “colorblind” treatment of all individuals in America. Since the Harvard Decision, WILL has launched numerous legal challenges to race-based, discriminatory programs across the country.

Skylar Croy

Skylar Croy

Associate Counsel

Dan Lennington

Dan Lennington

Deputy Counsel

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