Masters quits law

Hardie first female to chair Pinsent Masons in Scotland

Katharine Hardie: ‘the profession is changing’

Property lawyer Katherine Hardie has been appointed head of law firm Pinsent Masons’ Scottish and Northern Irish operations, succeeding Richard Masters who is leaving the legal sector.

Katharine Hardie becomes the first female chairman of Scotland and Northern Ireland 29 years to the day since she joined the firm as a trainee lawyer in 1990.

She will be responsible for leading the firm’s four offices in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Belfast and approximately 600 partners, lawyers and support staff.

After spending his entire 32 year law career with McGrigors, which merged with Pinsent Masons in 2012, Mr Masters has decided to step down to pursue other business opportunities outwith the legal profession.

Richard Masters

Richard Masters: leaving sector

Ms Hardie specialises in commercial and residential property development and recently acted for Barclays Bank in its acquisition of a new office campus at Buchanan Wharf in Glasgow, comprising in excess of 450,000 sq ft of new office buildings, where it will create 2500 new jobs for the city.

She said: “While I am sorry to see my long term colleague Richard go, I am looking forward to leading Pinsent Masons in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

“The profession is changing and being good lawyers is no longer enough. We need to focus hard on bringing a wide range of disciplines to help address our clients requirements. Equally, we need to continue to foster an inclusive culture which allows us to attract and retain the very best talent, and give it a global stage upon which to perform.

“All law firms are facing up to the challenges of uncertainty in the business community centred around Brexit, but the strength of our brand and our early adoption of smart technologies and AI techniques which have introduced greater efficiency for our clients, means we are well placed to make the best of opportunities as they present themselves.”

Mr Masters added: “I am delighted Katharine is taking on this important role and the firm’s Scotland and Northern Irish business could not be in better hands.

“On a personal level, I have been fortunate to enjoy a fantastic career with Pinsent Masons and previously McGrigors, and I am now looking forward to taking all the experience I have gained in the legal sector to develop a portfolio career across different business sectors.”

See also:

Appointments at Shepherd & Wedderburn and CMS

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