GW celebrates its talented pool of female staff on International Women’s Day

Published: 07/03/2017

On International Women’s Day, Goldsmith Williams Solicitors today celebrates its wealth of talented female staff members.

International Women’s Day celebrates the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. This year’s theme is #BeBoldForChange, one definitely relevant to women in law.

In the 1900s, women in Britain were refused admission to the Bar purely because of gender. This discrimination women faced professionally, as lawyers and many other professions originally seen to be ‘men’s work’, was famously challenged by suffragette leader Emmeline Pankhurst.

Miss Pankhurst spoke about how women in England were not even allowed to submit themselves for the preliminary examination in order to become students of the Inns of Court. There was, however, no law excluding women from becoming solicitors. Judges, she contended, simply found some way of deciding women did not hold the right.

“Perhaps,” she said, “they do not want to share these £10,000 incomes with members of the other sex.”

Thanks largely to the activism of those such as Miss Pankhurst, the legal sector is now one dominated by women.

In fact, according to The Law Society, as of 31 July 2015, 61% of qualified solicitors (on the roll) were female.

As for those studying law during this time, more than 67% were female.

Adele Whittle, Director of Operations at Goldsmith Williams Solicitors, comments:

“Is Goldsmith Williams an equal opportunity firm? Absolutely!

“Our firm is built on one basis – it’s talented pool of staff, whichever background they may be.

“From our dynamic lawyers who successfully win cases every week to our dedicated IT personnel designing some of the most innovative case management tools in the country, our team has remained consistently strong. Good people lead to good business. For that reason, we have also implemented agile working practices, to ensure all staff are able to maintain a work-life balance.

“Our hiring policy has always been based on competency, it just so happens that the majority of our staff is also female!”

The women of GW Solicitors:

• 165 employees – 106 female; 59 male

• 17 qualified solicitors – 9 female, 1 female trainee

• 6 licensed conveyancers – 5 female

2 female CILEX fellows

1 female board member, of 5

Some of the female faces of GW:

Adele Whittle

Adele heads up the personal injury department and is also director of operations. She joined GW in 2003 as a RTA (road traffic accidents) solicitor and has worked her way to the top since!

Lynne McCaffrey

Joining GW in 2005, Lynne looks after the day-to-day running of the property department. Lynne’s talent and dedication to law has seen her progress from conveyancing manager to head of the entire department.

Linda Cummins

Linda is head of Wills and Probate. She has more than 20 years’ of legal experience.

Emma Coffey

Emma is Head of Sales, focusing on property, and given her bubbly personality, it isn’t hard to see why!

Barbara Hillen

We’d challenge you to find a better HR manager! Barb has headed our human resources department for many years, working her way up the ladder since 2004 when she joined as a HR assistant.

Content correct at time of publication.

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