Jeff Lewis, commercial litigation partner at Brabners Chaffe Street, has taken over as president of Manchester Law Society.
Lewis, who specialises in contract and property disputes, also sits as a deputy district judge and is an accredited mediator and higher court advocate. He has been a member of the Manchester Law Society's Council since 1999 and chaired the Society's Civil Litigation Committee for the past seven years.
Lewis said: "I am extremely proud and honoured to be President of Manchester Law Society, even though impending changes to the regulatory framework, the economic downturn and the increasing scrutiny of the profession will make it a difficult year for many of our members.
"The legal profession in Manchester does a huge amount of high quality work for its clients, often for very low remuneration, or even on a pro bono basis, and I want to get this message across to the media and the public. Far too often the media portrays the profession as City 'fat cats' – a completely exaggerated and subjective image. I'm hoping to give solicitors a sense of pride back."
Brabners colleague Alistair Fletcher has been chosen as Vice President of Liverpool Law Society. Fletcher heads up the social housing department at Brabners Chaffe Street. He acts for social housing providers throughout the North West and beyond, with his client base ranging from the smallest co-operatives to national associations and including many stock transfer associations and their subsidiaries.
Fletcher said: "It is an immense privilege to be able to have the opportunity to help lead Liverpool Law Society in a time of such considerable change."
He also spoke about the key themes for his vice presidential year: "I am very keen to help those who are thinking about, or about to begin their career in, the law. I also want to promote the commercial life of Liverpool on the basis that a flourishing legal sector is good for the city and a flourishing city is good for the legal sector. Finally, I would like to encourage pro bono and other community initiatives that are worthwhile per se and promote and improve the image of the legal sector."