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All-female board for local law firm Hedges with appointment of new Managing Director

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All-female board for local law firm Hedges with appointment of new Managing Director
The all-female board at Hedges Law. Left to right: Karen Edwards, Nicola Poole and Lucy Morrison

Lucy Morrison has taken the reins from Nicola Poole as Oxford and Wallingford-based Hedges Law’s new Managing Director as part of a long-term succession plan and restructure that has resulted in an all-female board.

Lucy, who lives in the Cotswolds, is a highly experienced commercial lawyer with a Cambridge degree and previously led the biggest legal training and development company in the country.

Nicola, who has developed, grown and elevated the firm, from high street to high end, over the last 10 years, tripling its revenue and expanding it from Oxford and Wallingford into the Cotswolds and London, will be the firm’s newly appointed board Director of Culture & Innovation.

Karen Edwards, who has over 18 years of experience in law, continues as Operations Director.

The changes at the top are part of Hedges Law’s succession plans to grow the team, re-energise the firm and lead the business into its next chapter.

“We don’t simply want to follow the traditional ‘legal’ way, but instead be leaders who are values-driven, forward-thinking and progressive”, said Lucy. “One thing, in particular, I love about Hedges is the blend of the traditional with the cutting-edge, which comes through technology and our employee ownership model.

“My initial focus will be on our employees, or ‘Hedgeholders’, as we call them, to understand what we’re getting right and where we can do better so we can be the best law firm providing advice for life for our private clients and their families.

“I’m excited about the opportunities for our ‘Hedgeholders’ to progress their career, from newly qualified staff right up to board level members, and I’m really looking forward to working with managers to grow and develop our teams”, continued Lucy.

As an employee-owned trust, being a ‘Hedgeholder’ means that each person can make a difference and is valued, no matter their job. With the opportunity to share in the wealth they create, Hedges Law staff engagement levels have never been higher.

This people-first approach to business has also secured the firm a place on the shortlist for the Oxfordshire Business Employer of the Year award, which will be announced later this month.

In her new role as Director of Culture & Innovation, Nicola will spearhead a company culture of staying ahead of the game and ensuring the firm is future-proofed.

Nicola said: “When I came to the law, green as grass, 30 years ago, there were so few women at the top of firms. Male, pale and stale really was the order of the day.

“I believe our new board gives any woman in our team the assurance that they too could have a place at the boardroom table in the future and that law firm leadership is not reserved just for the men.

“With the EU recently setting mandatory targets for some companies to have at least 40% of females on their board, it’s good to see that with our all-female board, we’re already ahead of the curve on this”, continued Nicola. “It’s an exciting future for the firm.”

With its blend of long-standing Oxfordshire heritage and market-leading technology, Hedges Law has been able to serve clients in the modern way they want, supported by effective internal systems and processes.

As Operations Director, Karen will focus on ensuring the onboarding and continued engagement with clients is delivered in a digital, efficient way – to make the client’s experience seamless and memorable.

Karen said: “I work with each team leader to ensure effective and focused approaches to technology, compliance and other processes to deliver the five-star client service our high-net-worth private individuals expect.”

Founded in 1789, Hedges Law has clients throughout the UK, with modern business hubs in Oxford, Wallingford, Cotswold and London. It delivers ‘Advice for life’ supporting clients on all aspects of their lives: with family and property law advice, dispute resolution, as well as advising on wills, probate and inheritance planning.

Image credit: Akanksha Agarwal Photography

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