Minority Lawyers’ Awards

11 February 2011

Remember to enter the Minority Lawyer Awards

The Institute of Legal Executives is reminding its members to enter the Minority Lawyers’ Awards which will be presented on 8 April 2011, ahead of this year’s Minority Lawyers’ Conference (MLC) which starts the following day.

Organised by the Institute of Legal Executives (ILEX), the Law Society and the Bar Council, the conference brings together Black Asian Minority Ethnic (BAME) lawyers and those with an interest in the promotion of diversity in the profession. The aim of the conference is to celebrate the achievements of Black and Asian lawyers in the profession and explore the issues that impact upon BAME lawyers and develop a leadership agenda.

The Minority Lawyers’ Awards are designed to recognise success and inspire those in the profession to aim high. This year they recognise that BAME members of the legal profession make a valuable contribution to the ever changing legal landscape of England and Wales and will acknowledge those individuals or organisations that are already shaping the future of the profession through their dedication, hard work and sheer determination to increase diversity and inclusion in the legal sector.

Harbens Kaur, won the ‘Against the Odds’ Award in 2009, becoming the first Legal Executive to be recognised in this way: “It was a really fantastic feeling to know that my position within the profession was appreciated and recognised in this way.” said Harbens “Winning this award as an ILEX Lawyer allowed me to show my capabilities as an equal to Solicitors and Barristers, especially in terms of the knowledge and dedication that my role was being recognised for.

“This meant a great deal to me, as after many years of effort and dedication to my ILEX studies, my achievements were being rewarded.”

Harbens hopes more ILEX members will enter this year: “I would truly encourage fellow ILEX members to enter this year’s awards. Promotion and recognition of your achievements can only be a good thing and it is vital that the contribution you make as an ILEX Lawyer does not go unnoticed!”

The awards fall into five categories:

Against All Odds: This category is open to individuals who have overcome significant challenges and/or personal adversity to successfully enter and establish their chosen legal career.

Mentoring – Encouraging Minority Lawyers: Open to individuals, firms, organisations or chambers, this award recognises those that have used mentors in order to encourage minority lawyers.

Advocacy in the Face of Adversity: This award is intended to recognise an individual barrister, solicitor or legal executive who has successfully undertaken a legally significant case or a case considered to have little chance of success where the best interests of the clients have been promoted and protected fearlessly and where the aim of achieving justice has been pursued irrespective of the finance or other resources available.

Diversity – Less Talk More Action: The award that means what it says! This is an award that recognises an individual or organisation that has worked in a determined way to improve diversity in the legal profession and whose actions have made a measurable difference.

2011 Minority Lawyers’ Conference

Embracing Change – New Award: Recognises those who have stepped up to the challenges that change in the legal profession presents. It will recognise the development of innovative and creative business solutions which have utilised the opportunities inherent in a changing circumstances.

Head of Corporate Affairs at ILEX, Helen Simpson, said: “ILEX lawyers play a vital role in delivering high quality legal services to a diverse range of clients. Many of our members have overcome various hurdles to achieve their ambitions or have worked hard to ensure minority groups receive the legal representation to which they are entitled. Either way, by entering these awards you will not only have the opportunity to be recognised for your work, but you will also help to encourage others from all backgrounds to enter our profession, and bring about even more diversity”

The deadline for entries is 5.00pm on Friday 4 March 2011.