Short takes over as exec chair at Balfour + Manson

Elaine Motion and David Short

Law firm Balfour+Manson has announced that David Short will take over as executive chairman, succeeding Elaine Motion, who has spent almost ten years at the helm.

Mrs Motion remains as a partner at the firm and will hand over to Mr Short on 1 February.

She said: “I’ve been in the chair’s seat for close to a decade and it has been a pleasure and a privilege to lead this great firm.

“However, I have been in the role much longer than I ever expected – ten years is a long time in a leadership role, especially alongside complex and demanding client work – so I’m very happy to hand the baton to David Short.”

Mr Short joined Balfour+Manson in 2012 and took over as head of the litigation team when Mrs Motion became executive chairman in 2014.

He said: “It’s an honour to take up this role. Elaine’s shoes will be hard to fill as she has been a brilliant and formidable executive chairman, but I very much look forward to taking the reins and leading our excellent team at Balfour+Manson through the opportunities and challenges ahead.

“I’d like to thank Elaine for her tremendous leadership and look forward to drawing on her wide experience and wise counsel.”

Mr Short will work alongside the existing management team of Scott Foster, who joined the firm last year in the new role of chief operating officer, finance director Ken Dinneen and HR director Margaret Peet.

He specialises in personal injury cases, including aviation and complex cross border claims. He has experience in aviation accident cases and has represented clients in 22 accident cases – including the Malaysian Airlines MH17 crash, the Shetland helicopter ditching, and the Shoreham Air Show crash.  

Elaine Motion joined Balfour+Manson in 1993, after working in New Zealand, and became a Partner in 1997 and a solicitor advocate in 1999. She is best-known for leading two successful ‘Brexit cases’ – the 2018 European Court of Justice ruling confirming the UK can revoke the Brexit process without the say-so of fellow EU states, and the 2019 UK Supreme Court ruling that Boris Johnson’s prorogation of the House of Commons was unlawful.

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