International Women’s Day

Women lawyers meet pupils for International Women’s Day

12 March 2014

Justine ThorntonThirty five 13-year-old girls and eight successful women lawyers came together for International Women’s Day at a ‘career speed networking’ event to talk about a career in law. The Chartered Institute of Legal Executives (CILEx) attended along with Justine Thornton, Barrister at Thirty Nine Essex Street, at Parliament Hill School in London on Friday, 7 March.

Joining Justine at the event was 18-year-old Legal Services Apprentice Mariam Khan who works at Charles Simmons Solicitors in Ilford. The Legal Services Apprenticeship scheme will enable Mariam to qualify as a Chartered Legal Executive lawyer without going to university.

Mariam said: “I’m loving my apprenticeship and it was great to be able to share my experience with these young women. I hope they will be inspired to think about a career in law and realise that to become a lawyer you don’t need to get a degree.”

Justine Thornton, who is a Barrister at Thirty Nine Essex Street, said: “It was a privilege to mark International Women’s Day with Year 8 girls at Parliament Hill School. Joined by eight other women lawyers, we talked with the students about careers in the field. They asked us lots of interesting questions and I hope we’ve inspired them to think about a career in law.”

The event was organised by Inspiring the Future which aims to get 15,000 women volunteering to give up an hour a year and go into a schools or colleges near where they live or work to collectively chat with 250,000 young women about their career and their experiences in life.

The other women lawyers who attended the event were:

  • Anna Lyle-Smythe, solicitor at Slaughter and May
  • Hardip Shokar, associate at Slaughter and May
  • Elspeth Lynch, in-house lawyer at Bank of America
  • Bronwyn McKenna, solicitor and assistant general secretary at Unison
  • Sophie Cameron, head of Practical Law China Legal, Thomson Reuters
  • Rosamund McCarthy, partner at Bates Wells Braithwaite



Left to right: Mariam Khan, Legal Services Apprentice at Charles Simmons Solicitors; Justine Thornton, Barrister at Thirty Nine Essex Street; Jen Egginton, Regional Development Officer at CILEx