How McDonald’s Legal Department is Driving Change Against Social and Environmental Challenges

People at the American Lawyer Industry Awards

November 28, 2022

McDonald’s Legal department has long been passionate about diversity, service and education. This year, the department celebrated several milestones, including...

  • Helping to drive real change against some of the world’s most pressing social and environmental challenges, all while remaining committed to integrity and doing the right thing. This resulted in McDonald’s Legal department being named Corporate Counsel’s 2022 Legal Department of the Year at The American Lawyer Industry Awards. This prestigious award goes to the legal department that surmounted extreme challenges, was innovative in its thinking and achieved measurable successes in 2021. The American Lawyer Industry Awards honor the best the profession has to offer and those individuals and organizations who are taking the industry to the next level. Our team of legal experts demonstrates innovative, solutions-oriented leadership while ensuring McDonald’s core values remain at the forefront of our decision making. It’s exciting to see this incredible team recognized for their outstanding work. 

  • Achieving diverse representation in key departmental leadership positions and broadening the pool of diverse talent considered for departmental leadership positions. This culminated in McDonald’s Legal department earning Mansfield Rule: Legal Department Edition 2.0 Certification Plus status. McDonald’s Legal Department recognizes that a diverse and inclusive legal profession is a better one, and we are taking purposeful actions to better represent the diverse communities in which we operate to accelerate change in the legal industry. McDonald’s Legal department also received Diversity Lab’s Mansfield Rule Advocates Award, which recognizes the legal department that has most effectively worked with outside counsel law firms to create and sustain diverse outside counsel leads and teams. 

  • Continuing its strong commitment to pro bono work. This includes members of McDonald’s Legal department volunteering time with local students at Pritzker Elementary School in Chicago. Through this program – Lawyers in the Classroom – McDonald’s legal professionals partner with public elementary school teachers in 5th through 8th grade social studies classes to help students understand the U.S. Constitution and the U.S. legal system. McDonald’s has participated in Lawyers in the Classroom for more than 20 years! Several members of McDonald’s Legal department also volunteered their time with Street Law, a program that encourages young people of diverse backgrounds to consider law-related careers. As part of Street Law, McDonald’s Legal department hosted a Shadow Day for approximately 40 sophomores and juniors from two Chicagoland public high schools at McDonald’s headquarters where students shadowed McDonald’s lawyers and other legal professionals. McDonald’s Legal Department was honored with an inaugural Annual Civic Education Appreciation Award for this work.  

McDonald’s Legal department works every day to embody McDonald’s core values and increase diversity in the legal profession. For more information about their pro bono efforts year-round, click here.