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More women to take leadership roles in law

3rd February 2014

In a recent interview, the leading City firm Herbert Smith Freehills’ (HSF) soon to be joint chief executive said that the firm is looking to further its support for women in positions of leadership; Sonya Leydecker is to take on the new high profile position at the firm in May this year, marking the first woman to be the head of a firm of HSF’s size. 

With such a prominent firm making steps towards developing a completely gender equal team, London legal recruitment agencies and in-house companies across the UK could soon feel the effects as others follow suit. Leydecker gave her full backing to the gender equality ambition, telling the Law Gazette that “It is important for me that [HSF] has made it a strategic priority to support women’s development as leaders”.

The strategy announced by the firm is an important part of Herbert Smith Freehills’ ongoing efforts towards globalisation. While the legal sector is becoming increasingly diverse, the profession’s top positions still tend to be male-dominated, with the Chambers Student Guide recently finding that only 19 percent of existing Magic Circle partners are women.