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Chambers Diversity European Leadership Summit

This event is now closed.

Thank you to all those that attended our Chambers Diversity: European Leadership Summit, in association with Eversheds.

The seminar took place on Thursday, October 15, at the Conrad Hotel, Dublin, Ireland.

The summit explored all strands of diversity and inclusion, with the aim of assessing where the legal profession in Europe currently stands on these issues, and offering practical action points for all delegates to take away and implement.

We are proud to have partnered with Eversheds on this initiative. With their fantastic track-record and commitment to diversity in the legal profession, they provided invaluable insight and advice.

"Eversheds is committed to advancing diversity in the law. We recognise the importance of doing all we can to make sure the conversations about ensuring we have a fair and inclusive future continue and allow change to happen. The Chambers Summit on Leadership and Diversity plays a very important role, in helping to build a more inclusive future within the legal sector.  We are very excited to be collaborating with Chambers in its first European Leadership and Diversity Summit in Dublin.”

The event was free of charge for corporate counsel.

1.00pm – Registration and networking buffet lunch
1.30pm – Introductory remarks & Welcome from Chambers Team
1.35pm – Welcome from Alan Murphy, Eversheds
1.40pm – Panel 1
2.45pm – Panel 2
3.15pm – Coffee break
3.20pm – Panel 2 continued
4.00pm – Break-out sessions
4.40pm – Closing remarks and plenary
5.00pm – Drinks at Eversheds offices

Topics include:
- Defining diversity
- The business case for diversity
- How to ensure diversity and inclusion
- Fostering diverse leaders and creating networks
- Unconscious bias


Matthew Flood
Global General Counsel
Matthew Flood has been Global General Counel at Ingeus since January 2015.  Ingeus  seeks to transform the lives of individuals through provision of work, training and health related opportunities.  Ingeus operates in 12 countries, with its biggest market being the UK.  While most of Ingeus’ services are related to workforce development, it has recently become the 2nd largest provider of the UK Government's National Citizenship Programme, and taken on offender rehabilitation and probation services for the Ministry of Justice as part of the Reducing Reoffending Partnership.  Prior to joining Ingeus, Matthew was General Counsel of Balfour Beatty’s Services Division. While at Balfour Beatty, Matthew launched Balfour Beatty’s LGBT Network, and was co-chair of the Services Division Diversity Committee (and a member of the Group Diversity Committee).  Matthew is Founder and Co-Chair of “Off Site”, a sector-wide LGBT network for the Construction & Infrastructure sector, together with Pinsent Masons. 

In 2014, Matthew was named in the Financial Times as Number 59 in the OUTStanding in Business Top 100 LGBT Executives who have made a difference to LGBT equality in business. He is a passionate advocate for diversity and inclusion and has been published in the Guardian, GC Magazine and Construction News on the topic.  Matthew has worked in every continent except Antarctica, having spent much of his career advising in house on corporate transactions for the oil & gas, brewing, and construction sectors.  During this time he has always been out and proud, and believes his ability to be himself at work has contributed to his success.

Brid Horan
former Deputy CEO, ESB, Non-Executive Director
FBD Holdings plc, DCU, IMI
Brid Horan  - an Actuary, Fellow of the Irish Institute of Pension Management, Chartered Director and Fellow of the Institute of Directors  - has had a varied and challenging career in Irish business, combining executive and non-executive roles in various sectors. Late last year, Brid retired from her role as Deputy Chief Executive of ESB, Ireland’s leading energy company, having spent eight years on the ESB Executive Team.  Prior to joining ESB as Group Pensions Manager in 1997, Brid headed KPMG Pension & Actuarial Consulting.  She served on the Board of IDA Ireland, the agency which promotes and supports Foreign Direct Investment in Ireland, from 1996 to 2006 and as a Commissioner of the Irish National Pensions Reserve Fund from 2001 to 2009.

Brid is an Independent Non-executive Director of FBD Holdings plc, a member of the Governing Authority of Dublin City University and of the Council of the Irish Management Institute. In June 2014 she was appointed by the Minister for Education to the Expert Group on Funding Higher Education. She is a Director of ISAX: Ireland Smart Ageing Exchange, Chamber Choir Ireland and the Dublin Theatre Festival and was a member of the 2014 Strategic Review Group of the Irish Arts Council. Brid is also an active member of the 30% Club Ireland Steering Committee and a mentor on the WXN Wisdom Top 25 Mentoring Programme. 

Karen Jackson
Karen Jackson, Senior Solicitor, founded didlaw in 2008; a niche employment law boutique specialising in disability discrimination and issues around ill health at work alongside other fields of discrimination including sex, maternity & age.  The firm was set up following Karen’s 7 years of non-stop stress on the trading floor in the City, she then graduated from law school with a Distinction, trained as a solicitor at Mishcon de Reya, worked as Head of Legal UK and Eire for L’Oreal and had successful heart transplantation surgery at Papworth Hospital in Cambridge in 2006. didlaw acts for employees and employers and also provides disability advice and training.

For the last three years Karen has been listed as a Recommended Lawyer in the Legal 500. She is a regular keynote speaker for CIPD, The Priory Group and The Institute of Psychiatry as well as speaking and exhibiting at Health and Wellbeing @ Work and the 2014 ALAMA conference. Last year saw Karen’s webinar for the Law Society on Disability Discrimination receive glowing reviews and the highest ever score from their end-users. In 2014 the Mental Health Foundation unanimously elected Karen to the Board of Trustees. Karen also writes for journals including HR Director and Daniel Barnett’s Employment Law Bulletin. In 2015 the firm launched didlaw EDUCATION offering conferences and bespoke seminars around disability and mental health issues arising at work. 

Áine Maguire
Consultant and Business Coach
Áine Maguire is a consultant and business coach with a good deal of experience  in working with business leaders, owners and managers to create success. Her key areas of expertise include Organisation Development, Facilitation, Management Development, Executive Coaching, Change Management and Assessment & Selection. Áine has a successful track record of supporting business growth and organisation development in a diverse range of private and public sector organisations. She has also worked with a number of established Irish and international consulting practices. She is particularly experienced in working with professionals and owner managers.

Áine’s career background included a variety of senior management roles in leading commercial and non profit organisations in Ireland and the UK. Her early career focused in the area of export market development and she has also worked in marketing, communications and public affairs roles, across a variety of sectors. She has substantial experience in marketing, communications and business development and has designed and delivered a range of specialist training courses and development interventions in this area. She holds a M.Sc. Degree in Organisational Behaviour from Trinity College, a BA (Hons) from UCD and a post graduate Diploma in Export Marketing. She is a Graduate Member of the Institute of Marketing; a qualified and experienced user of a range of BPS approved psychometric instruments and an accredited trainer.

Alan Murphy
Managing Partner and Chairman
Eversheds Ireland and Eversheds International
Alan Murphy is the Managing Partner for the Dublin office and the Chairman of Eversheds International Limited.  As Chairman, Alan is a Board member of and chairs the Executive Committee of Eversheds International.  Alan also continues to maintain some key client relationships in Dublin. Alan's commercial property practice is substantial.  He has particular expertise in negotiating large commercial and retail leases both for institutional/private landlords and multi-national tenants.  Alan's practice has a particular focus in the healthcare and leisure sectors.  He and his team have extensive experience in acting for operators, tenants, investors, vendors and purchasers in these sectors.  A number of his clients are in the process of acquiring substantial portfolios of real estate assets to form funds for medium term retention or sale.  Alan also has considerable experience in project-managing real estate and other legal services for large multi-nationals across multiple jurisdictions in which Eversheds has a presence.  He has been a recommended individual in Chambers Global since 2006.

Pamela O'Neill
Partner and head of EWLI
Pamela is a partner working on the Eversheds Litigation and Dispute Resolution group. Pamela's practice comprises financial services disputes, regulatory disputes and commercial litigation. Due to the nature of Pamela’s practice, she has specific expertise in case managing large cases requiring strategic and team management skills and document management expertise.
She has experience in acting for both commercial clients and public bodies alike.  She has a particular focus on advising professionals, financial service providers and regulatory bodies in relation to dispute management, investigations and claims.

Pamela has experience in advising clients on litigation risk management, training policies and procedures to avoid litigation . In addition she has experience of working on regulatory inquiries and investigations . Pamela spearheaded the formation of Eversheds Women’s Leadership Initiative ( “EWLI”). EWLI goals are to provide a forum for women in Eversheds to discuss experiences and ideas about career development aswell as providing support to participants to reach their full potential in terms of their careers and hopefully to inspire participants to define  and go after success on their own terms.

Tunde Okewale
Doughty Street Chambers
Tunde Okewale is a 31 year old  award wining barrister and social commentator who has delivered services to multiple facets of the legal profession, including the pro bono sector, and has been a champion for diversity and representation of the disaffected. He was raised on a council estate in Hackney, East London. He is the eldest of four children and was the first person in his family to attend university and obtain a degree. During his studies, Tunde simultaneously undertook a number of part-time jobs in the food and retails industries, to enable him to contribute towards his household. Consequently, his academic studies suffered, and he obtained a 2.2 in his undergraduate degree. Career advisors and professionals told him that he would never make it. Despite this setback, Tunde ploughed on. He involved himself in community work and was eventually invited to conduct a workshop on behalf of the Greater London Authority. As a result of his performance on this project, he was asked to become a Director of the ‘From Boyhood to Manhood Foundation’, and was awarded a meritorious scholarship to attend bar school where he would excel academically to offset his undergraduate grades in 2009.

Tunde founded a charity called Urban Lawyers, a multi-media education and information center designed to educate, engage and stimulate discussion amongst young people about their attitudes towards criminal law, policing and personal responsibility. Urban Lawyers also provides resources, information and opportunities for young people to secure work and/or experience in the legal profession.   Under his leadership, the charity has awarded scholarships in partnership with BPP Law School and has arranged work experience and skills training for over 5,000 students from non-traditional backgrounds that demonstrate academic potential and are actively involved in community outreach.

Tunde is a regular speaker at the Law Society in relation to diversity within the profession, and is a motivational speaker to those from non-traditional backgrounds, encouraging them to enter the profession. He also featured as an expert on the BBC Radio 1 Xtra broadcast "Gangs On Film" alongside Noel Clarke, Ashley Walters and many others. He was asked to share his opinions on why young people join gangs and become entrenched in criminal enterprises. He also featured as an expert on the London Live documentary “Traptown”, where he was asked to share his opinions on the how the criminal justice system impacts young people.

He acted in the high profile pro-bono case referred by the Cardiff University 'Innocence Project', which saw the overturning of the wrongful murder conviction of Dwaine George. This was the first ever case to be referred to the Court of Appeal by university students. At a community level, Tunde was an advisor to The Citizen’s Inquiry into the Tottenham Riots in 2011 and assisted in the production and editing of a report that looked into the causes, effects and solutions in relation to the public disturbances. Tunde was an integral part of the fact finding exercise and facilitated dialogue between the residents of Tottenham. This report influenced national policy and helped secure funding for the residents of Tottenham.

Maria Pernas
Senior Vice-President, Deputy Group General Counsel
Atos Group
Maria Pernas is Senior Vice-President, Deputy Group General Counsel of the Atos Group (a leader in digital services with 2014 pro forma annual revenue of circa € 11 billion euros and 93,000 employees in 72 countries), managing a team of 160 lawyers and contract managers. She is also Atos Group Diversity Program Manager. After starting her professional career as external legal advisor at Price Waterhouse at the Madrid office, Maria joined “Sema Group” that, following several acquisition processes, became “SchlumbergerSema”, “Atos Origin” and it is now “Atos”.

Maria has held different managerial positions in the Atos Legal Department. In 1999 she was appointed “General Counsel Iberia and South America” and worldwide General Counsel for the business unit Major Events and Entertainment (in charge, among others, of the partnership with the International Olympic Committee for the Olympic and Paralympic Games). In 2004 she took over the position of “Vice-President General Counsel South Europe, Middle East, Africa and South America” at the Rome office while keeping her previous responsibilities as “General Counsel Major Events and Entertainment”. In 2008 Maria moved to Paris and she was appointed “Group Deputy General Counsel Major Contracts”, “Group Deputy General Counsel Compliance and Corporate Affairs” and in 2012 “Vice-President Group Deputy General Counsel Operations”. Maria has been Board member of several companies and she is now Board member of the Association of Corporate Counsel Europe and Board member of the European Association for Women in Leadership.

Dee Sekar
Editor: Corporate Counsel & Global Diversity
Chambers and Partners
Dee Sekar is a UK qualified solicitor and Corporate Counsel & Global Diversity Editor at Chambers & Partners. For the last 3 years, Dee has worked extensively on the Chambers Women in Law programme. She created the Chambers Women in Law blog which has established a global online discussion and community of female lawyers. In September 2013, Dee devised the Chambers Women in Law seminars. To date, she has moderated nine Women in Law seminars in the USA and Latin America. In just under a year, Dee has created a strong working relationship with hundreds of in-house lawyers in the USA and Latin America and works closely with the ABA Commission on Women in the Profession, DirectWomen, Juridico de Saias (Brazil) and Association of Corporate Counsel (Brazil).

In January 2015, Dee launched the Chambers Diversity program which encompasses gender, minority lawyers, LGBT, physical and social mobility and corporate social responsibility in the legal profession. Through research, seminars and awards, Chambers Diversity will be bringing a unique perspective to global diversity in the legal profession. Covering UK, Europe, Asia, USA and Latin America, the programme will give a platform to the most outstanding lawyers who have shown a real commitment to advancing diversity in the law. Chambers Diversity will also investigate the recruitment, retention and promotion of diverse lawyers in companies, law firms and barristers' chambers and will monitor this progress over time.

Claire Vaughan
Legal Counsel
Sodexo Ireland
Claire is the Legal Counsel for Sodexo Ireland, a role she has held for the past 3 years. Claire also sits on Sodexo Ireland’s CSR and Diversity Team and acts as Charity Liaison for the company in Ireland. Prior to working for Sodexo, Claire worked as a solicitor in the Corporate and M&A department of Dillon Eustace Solicitors – a role which included a year’s secondment to Hewlett-Packard as in-house Legal Counsel. Claire holds a BA in Law and European Studies as well as an LLM in Comparative Law from the University of Limerick.  She also holds a Diploma in Commercial Litigation from the Law Society.