Black History Month: ‘we may be unicorns, but we exist’


Theresa Conduah

Black History Month: ‘we may be unicorns, but we exist’

mrmohock /

February is Black History Month in the US and a time to reflect on the stark lessons of the past and how corporations and firms can help build a brighter future for all, says Theresa Conduah of Haynes Boone.

Cheslie Kryst was an attorney and Miss USA 2019. In the weeks before her tragic death by suicide in January, she posted a series of videos on the social media platform TikTok exploring why she no longer practised law.

Among the reasons she discussed was the lack of diversity and constant microaggressions she faced as a Black woman in the legal profession. While we may not have known her personally, Kryst’s words should resonate with each of us and serve as a call to action.

Racial diversity in IP law is far behind the “growth” in other sectors of the law. I have heard of minority IP attorneys, especially Black IP attorneys, often referred to as “unicorns” because of the lack of racial diversity in IP law. 

Haynes Boone, racial equality, Black History Month, D&I, microaggressions, patent attorneys, innovation, technology, STEM, minorities