Last week I had the pleasure of attending the 2010 Global Counsel Awards in New York. About 500 well-dressed lawyers from all over the world attended this “champagne and chandeliers” event, organised by the London-based International Law Office – the publisher of ACLA News stand. The event was strongly supported by ACLA’s “big sister”, the 26,000-member, Association of Corporate Counsel (Washington).
Around100 individual and team Awards were presented on the evening – at Cipriani’s - by a menagerie of platinum, gold and silver-level law firm sponsors, all eager to support their nominees. The winners were chosen from over 3,000 individual nominations received by the ILO from corporate counsel and law firm partners around the world. The Awards rewarded in-house counsel who excelled both in their specific roles and across the full spectrum of in-house responsibility. No candidate made the shortlist without multiple nominations from senior in-house counsel or law firm partners and Awards were only presented in categories for which more than 200 nominations were received.
Given the global nature of the Awards – and the hot competition – it was gratifying to see Aussies BHP-Billiton (Pedro Alwyn) and the Woolworths legal team, featuring amongst the shortlisted candidates. Special congratulations to the latter, which actually won an Award in the Competition Law category and sent Gerard Rohl, their Group Legal Manager all the way to NYC to pick up their trophy (which unfortunately, was actually still held up in customs in Memphis, having been “arrested” on the way from London!).
Fred Krebs, the president of the ACC said that “Every team and individual on this year’s shortlist has delivered a superlative service – no mean feat in these challenging times – and deserves recognition...” I certainly agree with him.
The ACLA Australian In-house Lawyer of the Year Awards 2010 will be presented at ACLA’s Annual Dinner in Sydney on November 11, during the ACLA National Conference - at the Hilton Hotel. Nominations for the Awards will open in a few weeks. I encourage readers to consider nominating suitable individuals, or legal teams, which meet the criteria, set out in the various Awards categories. A nominee need not be a member of ACLA.