Partners Elizabeth Brandon and Julia López have been named to the 2024 INvolve Empower Executive Role Model List for the second consecutive year, global law firm Reed Smith announced today. INvolve is a consultancy and global network enabling leaders and change-makers to build more successful and empowering organizations.

Brandon is a Dallas-based litigator and deputy chair of the firm’s Global Commercial Disputes Group. Born in Nigeria and moving to the U.S. as a child, Brandon credits her experiences navigating different cultures as a key to her personal and professional success.

A graduate of the University of Texas at Austin School of Law, she chairs STAARS (Sustaining and Training African American Attorneys at Reed Smith), where she spearheads initiatives focused on nurturing diverse legal talent, including the STAARS Associate Academy, providing training and mentorship for Black associates, which she founded.

Brandon also co-chairs the Dallas branch of WINRS (Women’s Initiative Network of Reed Smith), advancing women in the law. Brandon is a dedicated advocate for diversity in the legal and business communities, serving on advisory boards, supporting scholarship funds for HBCU graduates and empowering women to seek board seats through organizations like the Network of Empowered Women, Roundtable and 50/50 Women on Boards. Brandon’s efforts have increased representation and fostered career advancement opportunities for underrepresented groups.

Rutgers School of Law graduate López is a litigator in the firm’s Life Sciences Health Industry Group in Princeton. She is also the chair of UNIDOS, Reed Smith's Hispanic/Latinx business inclusion group. As UNIDOS leader, she has led much of its significant recent growth and mentored many of its members into leadership positions in the firm, the community and the legal profession. Born in Guatemala, she credits her background as a child of blue-collar parents with stimulating and sustaining her passion for inclusivity.

López takes an active role on the Princeton office’s Recruiting Committee, where she is focused on recruiting and retaining diverse talent.

López actively participates in other Reed Smith DEI initiatives, sharing insights in her speaking engagements and podcasts. She also holds leadership positions in the Hispanic National Bar Association, including programs like PODER25 – designed to increase Hispanic representation in corporate legal departments. As a member of numerous committees and organizations, including the U.S. District Court Merit Selection Committee and Kids in Need of Defense, her advocacy consistently and effectively champions diversity and justice.

INvolve’s work around the world includes showcasing business leaders breaking down barriers at work and working to smash the ceiling for ethnic minorities in the UK, Ireland, Europe, the United States and Canada.

The organization’s 2024 Empower Executive Role Model List, supported by YouTube, showcases 100 leaders breaking down barriers at work in global business. According to INvolve, “These inspirational leaders are paving the way when it comes to increasing representation and driving inclusion for others within the workplace. Those featured on the Empower Role Model List do not work professionally in DEI but represent the wide range of individuals who have made it their personal mission to make a difference.”

The Empower 2024 Executive Role Model List includes individuals who are ethnic, senior influencers, and actively working to create an environment where ethnic minority employees can comfortably bring their best professional selves to work. Its 2024 judging panel included leaders in business innovation, accounting, entrepreneurship, management consulting and DEI. Each nominee was scored on the influence of their role, their impact on ethnic minority inclusion inside and outside the workplace and their business achievements.