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Norton Rose Fulbright names Australian as next global chair

Norton Rose Fulbright has today appointed its Australia chair to the role of global chair. 

user iconJess Feyder 14 December 2022 Big Law
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Scott Atkins will take the leadership role, effective 1 January 2023. 

Mr Atkins will help drive the execution and achievement of the global firm’s strategy and efforts “to maintain consistently excellent client service around the world,” NRF said in a statement. 

The firm’s global chair role is newly appointed each year. Mr Atkins follows London partner Farmida Bi, CBE, who will continue as the firm’s EMEA chair. 


Along with the role, Mr Atkins will continue as chair of the firm in Australia, as well as global co-head of the restructuring team and the Australian head of risk advisory. 

Gerry Pecht, NRF’s global chief executive, stated: “Scott is a true firm citizen who never stops prioritising what is best for our clients and our people.

“His impressive history of leadership roles and experience advising business and governments on international matters will be a tremendous support to our global leadership team. 

“I would also like to sincerely thank Farmida for her incredible and selfless contributions as global chair over the past year.”

Mr Atkins, who is based in the firm’s Sydney office, stated that he was honoured and humbled to serve in the global role. 

“My focus will be to support the firm’s leadership to implement our strategy; support our clients as they pursue new frontiers, such as the burgeoning commercial space industry; and above all, to continue to deliver our exceptional standards of client service,” he continued.

Norton Rose Fulbright has tremendous potential leading into 2023, and I look forward to helping the firm seize market opportunities for the benefit of our clients,” he added. 

Mr Atkins holds decades of experience leading international organisations and teams, as well as advising on significant cross-border matters involving complex restructurings, risk management, and the design and implementation of new legal frameworks and reconstruction projects in emerging economies. 

Across nearly three decades as a lawyer, Mr Atkins “has become an internationally acclaimed and recognised industry leader in restructuring, regulatory and risk advisory work,” the firm said in a statement. 

“His deep industry knowledge and experience allow him to help shape the global policy and regulatory agenda and act on some of the most high-profile matters in the world,” NRF stated; he also has a strong focus on developing the firm’s space sector.

Mr Atkins is the president and an inaugural fellow of INSOL International; a global professional association of restructuring professions; he is chair of INSOL’s Asian advisory council; a member of the International Insolvency Institute; a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Law; and immediate past president of the Australian Restructuring Insolvency and Turnaround Association.

In his career, Mr Atkins has cultivated a deep commitment to capacity-building initiatives in emerging markets and developing economies.

In Myanmar, he led a team, working alongside the Asian Development Bank and the Union Supreme Court of Myanmar, which drafted a new restructuring and business rescue framework, culminating in the passage of Myanmar’s insolvency law in February 2020.

“This work was transformative in Myanmar’s modernisation process,” NRF said in a statement. “The legislation now serves as the best practice model for other nations,” which will be the focus of Mr Atkins’ upcoming December address at the United Nations in Vienna. This pioneering work has also led to similar advisory engagements in Armenia and Bhutan.