A Lifetime Achievement Award for Professor Robert Rennie was among a treble celebration for Harper Macleod on one of the Scottish legal sector’s biggest nights of the year – the Law Awards of Scotland.
At a glittering event in Glasgow’s Radisson Blu Hotel, Chairman Professor Lorne Crerar and Chief Executive Martin Darroch were once again crowned Managing Team of the Year – collecting the award for an incredible fifth time in the past seven years.
And making up the hat-trick, and showing the breadth of talent throughout the firm, Susie Tweedie, an Associate in Harper Macleod’s Private Client team, lifted an award for Up and Coming Lawyer of the Year.
Andrew Upton, an Associate in the firm’s Dispute Resolution team was also highly commended in the Up & Coming Lawyer of the Year category while Michelle Rankin, who earlier this week qualified and took her place in the Corporate team, was highly commended for Trainee of the Year.
Martin Darroch said: “This year has yet again brought tremendous growth in our firm and we are thrilled to see our people win these awards. Everyone at Harper Macleod works extremely hard and to have our efforts recognised by our peers is a tremendous honour.
“Robert Rennie is an example to any lawyer, young or old, of how to conduct yourself and be dedicated to the pursuit of excellence. He has been a huge influence on so many people both in the profession and in legal academia – one of very few people to bridge both disciplines. He’s also a larger-than-life character within our firm and no-one deserves a lifetime achievement award more than he does.
“Susie is one of many highly talented young lawyers we have coming through our ranks and her work within a greatly expanded private client team, following the addition of Bird Semple to the firm, has been outstanding and worthy of this recognition.
“To succeed in the legal industry you need drive, a willingness to innovate and the ability to work together to deliver legal services which exceed clients’ demands. I like to think that awards such as these are a sign that we are doing just that. Indeed, any success we have relies on our clients and friends and we’d like to thank them for their support.”
Professor Rennie, one of Scotland’s leading experts in property law and professional negligence and a prolific author of legal texts, received the lifetime achievement award after a year in which he stepped down from his longstanding position as Professor of Conveyancing at the University of Glasgow. Professor Rennie was out of the country so his prize was picked up by Martin Darroch.
The Management Team of the Year Award was again recognition of the strategic leadership which has seen Harper Macleod continue to grow year-on-year. Already one of Scotland’s leading full-service firms, it has expanded turnover, profits, floorplate, headcount and profile across the country during a time of significant change in the Scottish legal market.
Harper Macleod also made the final shortlist for a range of awards, including Private Client team of the Year, CSR Firm of the Year and Support Team of the Year.
It was also a good night for member firms of HM Connect, Scotland’s leading support and referral network which numbers 278 of the country’s independent high street and rural firms in its ranks.
McSherry Halliday was named Firm of the Year (under 40 fee earners), while two member firms, Innes and Mackay and Paris Steele shared the High Street Firm of the Year honours. In the Private Client Firm of the Year category Caritas Legal Limited took the prize.
Anne Macdonald, lead Partner of HM Connect, said: “We’d like to congratulate the winners on taking these prestigious titles. We already know how great our member firms are and it is good for everyone in the network to know they’re in such good company.”