Bass, Berry & Sims attorneys Shelley Thomas and Abby Yi were selected to participate in leadership programs hosted by the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD). Shelley Thomas will participate in the 2023 class of LCLD Fellows and Abby Yi will participate in the 2023 class of LCLD Pathfinders.

LCLD Fellows Program / Shelley Thomas

The LCLD Fellows Program was created in 2011 to identify, train, and advance the next generation of leaders in the legal profession. The Program connects high-potential, diverse attorneys from LCLD Member organizations for a year-long professional development program focused on leadership and relationship building. Participants will complete the LCLD’s exclusive curriculum designed for diverse, high-potential, mid-career attorneys.

Bass, Berry & Sims has long supported the LCLD organization and the Fellows Program. Several firm attorneys have previously completed the program, including:

2022 – Lillian Blackshear

2021 – Lauren Gaffney

2020 – Shannon Wiley

2019 – Lisa Rivera

2018 – Sehrish Siddiqui

2017 – Tatjana Paterno

2016 – Kinika Young (firm alumna)

2015 – Al Bright

2014 – David Esquivel

2013 – Kathryn Walker

2012 – Alonda McCutcheon (firm alumna)

2011 – Wendy Warren (firm alumna)

Shelley is a member in the firm’s Nashville, Tennessee, office and focuses her practice on the development, commercialization, transfer and protection of intellectual property assets, with particular emphasis on representing private equity firms, strategic investors and their portfolio companies in the IP and technology aspects of mergers and acquisitions and other strategic transactions. Shelley also represents public and private companies in structuring and negotiating a variety of technology and commercial agreements including licensing, SaaS, and cloud hosting, distribution, reseller and outsourcing agreements for clients in a variety of industries. Learn more about Shelley’s practice here.

LCLD Pathfinder Program / Abby Yi

The LCLD Pathfinder Program was created in 2015 to train high-performing, early-career attorneys. The goal of this program is to provide Pathfinders with practical tools for developing and leveraging (1) internal professional networks through relationship-building skills; (2) foundational leadership skills; and (3) an understanding of career development strategies.

Abby is an associate in the firm’s Washington, D.C. office and focuses her practice on representing a diverse range of companies in connection with internal and government investigations concerning white collar and corporate compliance matters.  Abby also has significant experience counseling clients on healthcare fraud and abuse issues and defends healthcare companies respond to government enforcement actions involving potential False Claims Act violations before the Department of Justice, United States Attorneys’ Offices, and Department of Health and Human Services.

About LCLD

LCLD is an organization of more than 400 corporate chief legal officers and law firm managing partners—the leadership of the profession—who have pledged themselves, through the Leaders at the Front initiative and other means, to creating a truly diverse U.S. legal profession. For more information, visit