Professor Lorne Crerar, Chairman and founder of Harper Macleod, was described as a "juggernaut of the legal profession" as he received the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award at the Scottish Legal Awards 2019.
Professor Crerar follows in the footsteps of an illustrious array of previous winners, from Lords Cullen, Mackay, Hope and McCluskey to Lady Cosgrove and last year's recipient, Baroness Helena Kennedy QC, and belongs firmly in the company of such grandees.
Professor Crerar receives the award from Magnus Llewellin of the Times, alongside hosts Hardeep Singh Kohli and Catriona Shearer
Presenting him with the Award, Scotland Editor of the Times Magnus Llewellin described Professor Crerar as a "one of the most respected legal figures in Scotland", while host for the evening TV presenter Hardeep Singh Kohli, was also a student of Professor Crerar at the University of Glasgow and praised his kindness and community, saying: "You taught us more than just the law, you taught us about life."
The feedback from the judging panel was that he was the unanimous choice to receive the award. His role in creating then running a major Scottish law firm over three decades, and the regard in which he is held throughout the Scottish legal community, were almost enough in itself to qualify him for the award. However, the fact that his influence has gone so far beyond the legal sector – carrying out key roles in sport, academia and the public sector, not least as Chairman of Highlands and Islands Enterprise since 2012 – meant he was a worthy recipient.
Professor Crerar has been a businessman, a public servant, a sportsman and an educator, and has left an indelible mark in each of these realms.
After receiving the award, he said: "I am truly honoured to receive this award and would like to thank the judging panel for deeming me worthy of joining such an esteemed list of recipients. It has been my good fortune to find a career that I love and through which I have had so many opportunities open before me. I have also been very fortunate to work with great clients and many brilliant colleagues in law, in sport and in all my other roles without whom any achievements of mine could not have been realised.
"To this day I am as passionate about Scots law and the Scottish legal profession as ever and on evenings such as this see every reason why it will have a very bright future."
At the other end of the career spectrum at this year's Awards, Harper Macleod Associate Amy Mackenzie was Highly Commended in the Rising Star of the Year category.
You can view all the winners for the Scottish Legal Awards 2019 online here.