2024 Legal Awards shortlist revealed

Shortlist Judges Jabeer Miah, Jeremy Myers and Janine McKinney

70 individuals and firms have been recognised in Birmingham Law Society’s annual Legal Awards shortlist, which has been announced today.

The auspicious event is one of the highlights of the Birmingham Law Society calendar. Birmingham Law Society is the largest local Law Society outside of London and the awards are a celebration of the best legal talent across Birmingham and the surrounding area.

Head Judge Jabeer Miah, President of Northamptonshire Law Society, alongside Jeremy Myers, Immediate Past President of Liverpool Law Society and Janine McKinney, Immediate Past President of Nottinghamshire Law Society, gathered on 24th January to shortlist the 14 categories that make up the Birmingham Law Society Legal Awards 2024.

Jabeer Miah commented:

“It has been a pleasure for me and my colleagues to read and consider the entry submissions for the 2024 Birmingham Legal Awards. All entries were of high quality and the work being undertaken in Birmingham is commendable and really impressed the judges. All entrants should be proud of their submissions and it took the judges a lot longer than expected to finalise the shortlist albeit the judges enjoyed learning of the great work the Birmingham legal community is undertaking. We thank all the candidates for their submissions and wish all finalists the best of luck!”

President of the Birmingham Law Society, Alice Kinder added:

“I would like to congratulate every individual and organisation shortlisted for an award. The shortlist not only showcases the vibrant range of talent in Birmingham, but also places our city on the map as a dynamic and influential legal hub. This year’s awards reflect our commitment to recognising the diverse contributions made by professionals from all backgrounds and set an inspiring precedent for the future of our legal community. I wish all candidates the best of luck.”

In line with Alice’s presidential themes of community and opportunity, this year’s awards have been revised to ensure that every area of the vibrant legal profession is recognised and celebrated. This year, there are three new categories – Outstanding Student Contribution of the Year, Legal PA of the Year and Junior Barrister of the Year, to reflect the diverse range of legal talent in the city.

The shortlist can be exclusively revealed below.

Outstanding Student Contribution of the Year 2024

  • Gurpreet Chaggar, Aston University
  • Ruqayya Kalsoom, Aston University
  • Dana Burdan, Newman University
  • Alex Virdi, The University of Birmingham Law School
  • Eleanor Ford, The University of Law

Apprentice of the Year 2024

  • Hollie Ingram, Browne Jacobson LLP
  • Caira Baker, Capsticks Solicitors LLP
  • Ellie Brookes, Pinsent Masons LLP
  • Jai Akhurst, Squire Patton Boggs (UK) LLP
  • Tom Reeves, Weightmans LLP

Trainee Solicitor of the Year 2024 sponsored by The University of Law

  • Isabella Davies, Anthony Collins Solicitors LLP
  • Hannah O’Brien, Bevan Brittan LLP
  • Drew Wilson, Gateley Legal
  • Sarah Hall, Squire Patton Boggs (UK) LLP
  • James Statham, Weightmans LLP

Paralegal of the Year 2024 sponsored by Landmark Information Group

  • Carrie Hu, Chase Morgan Solicitors
  • Dalbinda Gill, DWF LLP
  • Bria Hampson, Shoosmiths LLP
  • Lily Emmett, Weightmans LLP
  • Rikesh Chauhan, Weightmans LLP

Legal PA of the Year 2024 sponsored by the PA Forum

  • Carol Page, Chase Morgan Solicitors
  • Dawn Baggott, DWF LLP
  • Jodie Beckett, Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP
  • Jemma Jackson, Tenet Compliance and Litigation
  • Kathryn Frost, Weightmans LLP

Solicitor of the Year 2024 sponsored by Dye & Durham

  • Marie Kilgallen, Irwin Mitchell LLP
  • Shereen Johal, Shoosmiths LLP
  • Jo Tunnicliff, Shoosmiths LLP
  • Joel Blake, The Wilkes Partnership LLP
  • Soyod Yasin, Wildings Solicitors LLP

Junior Barrister of the Year 2024 (10 years’ call and under)

  • Grace Gwynne, No5 Barristers’ Chambers
  • Bethany Armitage, St Philips Chambers
  • Chevan llangaratne, St Philips Chambers
  • Matthew Cullen, St Philips Chambers
  • Callum Church, St Philips Chambers

Barrister of the Year 2024 (over 10 years’ call) sponsored by Birmingham City University

  • Omar Sherif Ensaff, No5 Barristers’ Chambers
  • Jason M Hadden, St Ives Chambers Ltd
  • Ali Tabari, St Philips Chambers
  • Sophie Garner, St Philips Chambers
  • Elizabeth Hodgetts, St Philips Chambers

Partner of the Year 2024 sponsored by JM Glendinning Professional Risks

  • Adam Maguire, Clarke Willmott LLP
  • Marissa Jacquet -Smoothy, Grove Tompkins Bosworth
  • Emma Rush, Irwin Mitchell LLP
  • Emma Louise-Hewitt, Sydney Mitchell LLP
  • Maryam Storr, Weightmans LLP

In-House Lawyer of the Year 2024

  • Sophie Samani, Henderson & Jones
  • Laura Stockin, Legal Ombudsman
  • Baljinder Singh Atwal, West Midlands Police

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Award 2024

  • Birmingham Black Lawyers
  • Bila Law Academy
  • Gateley Legal
  • Pinsent Masons LLP
  • Weightmans LLP

Pro Bono Award 2024

  • Birmingham City University Law Clinic
  • Birmingham Law School’s Pro Bono Group
  • Family Advice Midlands
  • Shoosmiths & University of Law Small Business Advice Line Partnership
  • The Litigation Programme

Regional Law Firm of the Year 2024 sponsored by LEAP

  • Chase Morgan Solicitors
  • Spencer Shaw Solicitors
  • Sydney Mitchell LLP
  • The Wilkes Partnership LLP
  • Wildings Solicitors LLP

National Law Firm of the Year 2024 sponsored by St Philips Chambers

  • Bevan Brittan LLP
  • Davisons Law
  • Gateley Legal
  • Roythornes Solicitors
  • Shakespeare Martineau
  • Shoosmiths LLP
  • Weightmans LLP

All nominees are invited to an interview mid-February with independent judges from a range of backgrounds including:

  • Joanna Hughes, former lawyer at Allen and Overy and Founder and Director, Joanna Hughes Solicitor Apprenticeships
  • Gaynor Williams, President, Liverpool Law Society
  • Rebecca Mander, CEO, GuruYou™
  • David Anderson, President, Manchester Law Society
  • Omar Rashid, Director, HR Dept and President, Asian Business Chamber of Commerce
  • Henrietta Brealey, CEO, Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce
  • Shanika Varga, President, Leeds Law Society
  • Salma Maqsood, Vice-President, Bristol Law Society
  • Anjum Khan, Director, Asian Business Chamber of Commerce
  • Dan Bridgewater, Founder & CEO, Buckt
  • Manesha Ruparel, Partner, Alexander & Co and Immediate Past President of Derby and District Law Society
  • Diana Kirsch, Associate Dean, Hertfordshire Law School and Immediate Past President of Hertfordshire Law Society
  • Daniel Skermer, Director, Founder & Coach, PA Forum

They will be joined by two of the shortlist judges, Jabeer and Jeremy, to identify the winner of each category which will then be announced on Thursday 14th March at the glittering awards dinner at the city’s iconic ICC venue.

To book your tickets or to find out more information about the remaining sponsorship opportunities, please click here.