06 January 2021

Norton Rose Fulbright unveils 47 new partners - with women making up the majority

Sunset view of the Sandton offices of international law firm Norton Rose Fulbright, with the ABSA Capital (Barclays) corporate office to the right.

NRF's Johannesburg office

Twenty-five women promoted, 53% of cohort, as global firm makes up partners across 22 offices

Norton Rose Fulbright has promoted 47 partners across its network with the proportion of women breaking through the symbolic 50% benchmark.

Twenty-five of the new partners – known as directors in South Africa – are women, 53% of the cohort. That represents a jump from 42% last year and 39% in 2019.

“Practising in 22 offices across 11 countries on six continents, these lawyers reflect the truly global nature of Norton Rose Fulbright and its wide range of client offerings,” said chief executive Gerry Pecht. “Most importantly, our firm’s continued focus on diversity and inclusion is showing positive results, with female lawyers accounting for more than half of our promotions.”

The tally of new partners represents a slight dip from last year, when 53 lawyers were promoted.

The London office registered the most promotions – eight, the same as last year – followed by Sydney and Toronto, where four partners apiece were promoted.

The Europe, Middle East and Asia region welcomed 16 new partners –  the same as last year. Promotions in Canada fell from 14 to 11 and in the US from 13 to 10. In Australia six partners have been made up, up from five last time, while in South Africa there were four promotions, one less than in 2020.

Among the successful candidates are former HSBC associate general counsel and regulatory law specialist Rajaee Rouhani, who is based in Melbourne, Dubai-based energy specialist Angela Croker and Warsaw’s Agnieszka Braciszewska, an M&A lawyer.

London’s promoted lawyers include Sarah Luce, who is chief compliance officer, responsible for the firm's risk and compliance function across EMEA, and technology specialist Zayed Al Jamil, former head of legal and public affairs at MeteoGroup.

In South Africa, Durban-based M&A specialist Ugendran Odayar is among the new directors, while in North America, new partners include San Francisco banking specialist Mary Kimura, who joined from Sidley Austin in 2013, and Ottawa’s Heather Cameron, an employment specialist.

Last year, NRF ushered in a new leadership team with Pecht succeeding Peter Martyr as chief executive, ending the UK lawyer’s two decade-long tenure at the helm of the firm, while US head of employment Shauna Clark was appointed US and global chair, making her the first woman of colour to hold either role. In Europe, Peter Scott became managing partner of the EMEA region in April.

Meanwhile, fellow Am Law firm Reed Smith unveiled 31 new partners today, including 12 women. 

Click here for a full list of NRF’s new partners and here for Reed Smith’s.

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