09:04 AM

Missouri Bar executive director honored with diversity, inclusion award

Mischa Buford Epps, executive director of The Missouri Bar, was honored with the 2021 Sly James Diversity and Inclusion Award for her efforts in the legal community. 

The award highlights members of the Kansas City area legal community for their diversity and inclusion contributions in the legal profession. Epps received the award during the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association’s 48th annual Bench-Bar & Boardroom Conference on May 13, 2021. 

Epps said she is honored to receive the award. 

“I look forward to continuing to work with our members to ensure that our profession and our organizations are more inclusive and improve our ability to retain, advance, and empower a full range of lawyers of diverse backgrounds and experience,” she said. 

Epps took the helm of The Missouri Bar in April 2020, where she oversees the everyday operations of the organization, as well as implements policies the bar’s Board of Governors adopt. Before joining The Missouri Bar, she was a partner at Shook, Hardy & Bacon LLP in Kansas City, where she practiced for more than 20 years. She was a founding member and past chair of the firm’s diversity committee and held leadership roles in bar organizations, including the Jackson County Bar Association and KCMBA.  

The KCMBA’s Diversity Section and Kansas City’s diverse bar associations created the award in 2016 and named it after Sly James, a KCMBA past president and former Kansas City mayor.