Karen Percival has become the first CEO of Donaldson Walsh Lawyers, heading the SA outfit with managing partner John Walsh.
Percival (pictured) told Lawyers Weekly that the firm’s growth ambitions prompted the creation of the CEO role. She added that the CEO-managing partner set up will help the firm achieve quick decisions.
“We see the CEO taking over the strategic management of the business, while the managing partner remains the founder, mentor [and] practising lawyer for the legal staff,” she explained.
The firm has no intention of discontinuing one of the roles, Percival continued. “Given the size of the firm and ambitions for growth I think it is necessary to continue with both roles.”
With a background in professional practice management, Percival has worked as COO and CFO with SA firm Finlaysons. She has also held a range of finance and audit roles with major companies.
Percival believes her business management skills and experience in the legal field were key factors in her appointment.
The news follows yesterday’s (1 August) merger between Donaldson Walsh Lawyers and boutique tax and commercial practice Campbell Rankine.
The five-strong Campbell Rankine team will join Donaldson Walsh’s existing tax and revenue practice.
Walsh said the merger and Percival’s appointment are important steps in the firm’s strategic development.
“Karen’s arrival represents a pivotal point in our evolution,” he said.
“Our expansion has occurred predominantly through the recruitment of talented legal professionals and the targeted addition of teams of lawyers with expertise of specific value to our clients.”