Rebecca Stevens, a family solicitor at Wiltshire law firm Withy King, has been shortlisted for the Law Society Gazette’s Legal Personality of the Year Award.
The finalists for the Law Society Excellence Awards 2015 have been selected by a panel of senior industry experts, looking to recognise outstanding achievements made by legal businesses and individuals.
This is the third time this year that Rebecca has been shortlisted for a prestigious national award, having previously been named a finalist in the Ethical Initiative of the Year category at the Lawyer Awards 2015 and the Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year (LALY) Awards run by the Legal Aid Practitioners Group. She was also included in The Lawyer’s Hot 100 list for 2015.
“It is a real honour to be recognised by the Law Society in this way,” said Rebecca Stevens, a Senior Associate Solicitor- Advocate in the family team at Withy King in Swindon. “Times are changing for law firms and cuts to legal aid have had a devastating impact on the most vulnerable members of society. Being a viable business while continuing to offer legal aid is becoming increasingly difficult for most firms. I am very privileged to work with a team who are dedicated to undertaking legal aid work to help others and to work for a firm who is committed to upholding the traditional morals and ethics of the legal profession. Being a legal aid lawyer is not a job. It is a vocation and I am proud to work for a firm which values this.”
Rebecca Stevens has been named a finalist in the legal profession’s most prestigious awards following her tireless pro bono work on behalf of a father with learning difficulties who had been denied legal aid to try and prevent Swindon Borough Council from having his young son adopted.
Rebecca, who provided over 100 hours of her time free of charge to help her client, was praised by the Head of Family Justice in England and Wales, Sir James Munby, in a court judgement in which he threw a spotlight on the lack of funding available for legal representation.
Law Society president Jonathan Smithers said: “It is inspiring and motivating to read of the fantastic work being done by solicitors across the country and the profession. I congratulate this years’ finalists and look forward very much to meeting them at the awards ceremony in October.”
Pictured above: Rebecca Stevens, Senior Associate Solicitor- Advocate at Withy King