Former Brodies boss wins outstanding contribution gong at Law Awards of Scotland

THE former managing partner of law firm Brodies has been honoured for a lifetime’s service to the legal profession, last night picking up the outstanding contribution gong at The Law Awards of Scotland.

Run by The Herald, held in association with HRC Recruitment and sponsored by McKinstry Practice Management, The Law Society of Scotland and Stirling Park, the event was attended by 400 members of the legal profession, including private practice solicitors, advocates and in-house counsel.

Having presented the award to Mr Drummond, who transformed Brodies from a single-site firm into a £66 million business during his 20 years at the helm, McKinstry Practice Management director Graeme McKinstry said he was a “truly exceptional and a worthy recipient”.

“This outstanding contribution award has always recognised exceptional talent, recognising a truly distinguished career and contribution,” he said.

“It’s a fitting career pinnacle and we are delighted to be its sponsors.”

Brodies also took home a trophy from the night, being crowned the first-ever winner of the new innovation award.

The law firm of the year award went to MBM Commercial, which impressed the judges with its business achievements and commitment to diversity, while international firm of the year went to Clyde & Co.

Aamer Anwar of Aamer Anwar & Co, who was commended for his work on the extradition case of Catalan politician Clara Ponsati, was named solicitor of the year for the second time in two years, while Skyscanner’s Carolyn Jameson was named general counsel of the year for the second year running.

Ms Jameson, who has been at the forefront of driving her employer’s integration with Chinese business C-trip over the past two years, was said by the judges to be the clear winner in this category.

Elsewhere, Aidan O’Neill QC, who has been involved in cases as diverse as the Scotch Whisky Association’s minimum alcohol pricing challenge and the so-called Scottish Brexit case, which was heard in the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg this week, was again named as silk of the year.

Mr O’Neill shared the accolade with solicitor-advocate John Scott QC, who is currently leading a review into the policing of the miners’ strike on behalf of the Scottish Government.

HRC Recruitment chief executive Hilary Roberts, who presented the law firm of the year and corporate team of the year categories, said the awards showed that “Scotland’s legal industry is going from strength to strength and has an exciting future ahead”.

“We are thrilled to have sponsored the night; the room was bursting with the very brightest and best of Scottish legal talent,” she said. “Firms showed best practice in delivering the best possible service to clients as well as developing and shaping the next generation of legal experts.”

The Law Society of Scotland sponsored the pro-bono category at the event, which was won by Glasgow Caledonian University Law Clinic. The standard of the entries in this category was so high that both other finalists – Edinburgh University Free Legal Advice Centre and University of Strathclyde Law Clinic – received a commendation.

The Law Society’s Lawscot Foundation, which was established in 2016 to help talented students from economically disadvantaged backgrounds pursue a career in law, was the charity partner for the awards,

Law Society president Alison Atack said: “It is always pleasing to see the great successes of the Scottish legal profession and I am particularly proud that our charity, the Lawscot Foundation, was chosen as the Law Awards’ first-ever charity partner.”

Stirling Park once again supported the litigation team of the year award, which was won by Allan McDougall Solicitors with a commendation going to Halliday Campbell.

Ronnie Murison, director of sheriff officer services at Stirling Park, said: “Congratulations to all of this year’s finalists and winners. The event was a great success and it allowed Scotland’s legal profession to recognise and reward the high achievers in their particular field for their hard work this year.”

Launched in 2004, the Law Awards highlight the often-heroic efforts made by legal firms to ensure clients receive the highest standards of advice and service.

Shortlist with Winners

Junior Solicitor of the Year
Yousif Ahmed, Esq.
Rebecca Barrass – MacRoberts LLP – Winner
Leigh Beirne – Harper Macleod LLP
Tom Gray – Harper Macleod LLP
Musab Hemsi – Ellis Whittam – Commendation

Debt Recovery Team of the Year – sponsored by Stirling Park
Aberdein Considine
MacRoberts LLP/Yuill Kyle
Shoosmiths LLP – Winner

Family Law Firm of the Year
Innes & Mackay
Livingstone Brown Ltd
Macleod & MacCallum
Patience and Buchan – Winner

CSR Award
CMS – Winner
Innes & MacKay
Scottish Ethnic Minorities Lawyers Association (SEMLA) – Commendation

In-House Lawyer of the Year
Christopher Morgan – Weir Group
Duncan Holland – Cairn Energy
Kenny Robertson – RBS – Winner
Michael Mustard – Tesco Bank

Litigation Team of the Year – sponsored by Stirling Park
Allan McDougall Solicitors – Winner
Clyde & Co
Dallas McMillan
Halliday Campbell – Commendation
Shoosmiths LLP

High Street Firm of the Year
Allan McDougall McQueen LLP – Winner
Innes & Mackay
Fords Daly Legal Limited
McClure Solicitors – Commendation
Paris Steele W.S.

Criminal Law Firm of the Year
Aamer Anwar & Co., Solicitors & Notaries
Adams Whyte, Criminal Defence Lawyers  – Winner
Beltrami & Co
Ian Moir and Company
Livingstone Brown

Private Client Team of the Year
Burness Paull LLP
Innes & Mackay – Winner

Pro-Bono Award – Sponsored by the Law Society of Scotland
Edinburgh University Free Legal Advice Centre – Commendation
Glasgow Caledonian University Law Clinic – Winner
University of Strathclyde Law Clinic – Commendation

Banking and Finance Team of the Year
Pinsent Masons
Shepherd and Wedderburn – Winner

Innovation Award
Brodies LLP – Winner
Shoosmiths LLP

General Counsel of the Year
Carolyn Jameson – Skyscanner Limited – Winner
James MacKenzie – AEGON UK
Martin Cooke – Edrington
Rushad Abadan – Standard Life Aberdeen

Corporate Team of the Year – sponsored by HRC Recruitment
Macdonald Henderson – Winner
Pinsent Masons
Shepherd and Wedderburn

Silk of the Year
David Johnston QC
Aidan O’Neill QC – Winner
John Scott QC – Winner

International Firm of the Year – sponsored by the Law Society of Scotland
Clyde & Co – Winner

Solicitor of the Year
Aamer Anwar – Aamer Anwar & Co., Solicitors & Notaries – Winner
Margo McGill – Lockharts Solicitors
Ian Moir – Ian Moir & Company – Commendation

Law Firm of the Year – sponsored by HRC Recruitment
Clyde & Co
MBM Commercial LLP – Winner
Shepherd and Wedderburn

Outstanding Contribution Award – sponsored by McKinstry Practice Management
Bill Drummond