Newsletter May 2017


MAY 2017​

Dear Colleague,

We are delighted to share with you our pipeline of initiatives and events for the coming months.  We hope you will agree these present exciting opportunities to get involved with BSN’s unique platform of services which benefit its members and stakeholders alike.

We appreciate and welcome your ongoing support for our work in striving for an equal profession.


Save the date for the launch event & release of

BSN’s Diversity League Table: 10-year Study (DLT2017) hosted by Latham & Watkins on Monday 19 June 2017

BSN’s Diversity League Table (DLT) is sponsored by The Law Society and is widely considered to be the legal profession’s leading diversity reporting initiative and publication, covering gender, ethnicity, social mobility, sexual orientation and disabilities. DLT2017 reports on the barriers and drivers of diversity in the legal profession over the past 10 years and is based on a review and analysis of diversity data submitted by leading law firms which have participated in the DLT since its inception in 2006.

Places for this exclusive event are limited. Register to attend by clicking: DLT2017 Launch event.

BSN City Group in association with Herbert Smith Freehills LLP will be hosting the third in a series of seminar workshops for BSN City Group’s members including, in particular, the 2016/7 mentee cohort of BSN City’s Creating Pathways through Mentoring and Sponsorship programme.  The seminar is entitled From Business Cards to Strategic Relationships: Networking – How to Love it by Joanna Gaudoin of Voice at the Table.

Further details will follow.  For now, please reserve the date of 22 June 2017 @ 6.30pm for this seminar event.



The UK Diversity Legal Awards is a BSN initiative.  Now in its 8th year, it is the only industry Awards which focus solely on recognising and promoting diversity and inclusion across the legal profession.  Entries for these Awards may cover one, some or all aspects of diversity, including  gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation and disabilities.  Entry is free – the nomination deadline is ​31 July 2017​.  Shine a light on excellence in diversity and inclusion in the profession,  nominate today!

For more information, visit www.diversitylegalawards.org.

BSN in association with Linklaters LLP will be hosting a panel event to raise awareness around board opportunities for BME professionals and building a portfolio career, with particular focus on public board appointments.

More detailed event information will follow separately.


PANEL EVENT – 27 JUNE 2017 @ 6.30pm, hosted by Linklaters LLP



BSN City Group and ILFA will be partnering to bring you a seminar event on Africa Emerging Markets which will be hosted by Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer in the Autumn.  Further details will follow during the Summer.

If you have any enquiries regarding this event or other BSN City Group initiatives/events, email bsncity@blacksolicitorsnetwork.org.

BSN North (based in Manchester) was re-launched in April 2016 with the aim of raising awareness of the region’s talented BME legal community.  Their primary objective is to provide a platform for those with an interest in equality to share and advocate equal access, retention and promotion of BME’s within the profession.

For more information or to join BSN North, visit BSN North, or emailbsnnorth@blacksolicitorsnetwork.org.

BSN North Chair: Kyle Blackburn



6pm​ in The Botanist, Deansgate​, Manchester

To book your place, clickBSNNorth



For more information, lcareers@blacksolicitorsnetwork.org

BSN Director (Careers)

Paul McFarlane

BSN has developed and regularly hosts, in conjunction with leading firms and corporates, interactive Career Workshops for its student members, which provide insights into the recruitment process and tailored advice on applying for training contracts or work placements, with measurable success. If you are interested in engaging with and recruiting from a diverse talent pool, why not host a Careers Workshop – please contact us on email or visit BSN Careers for further information.

BSN will be collaborating with Accenture Legal for the 5th year to provide summer internship opportunities for BSN Student members. Further information will follow soon, so watch this space!

​Holding judicial office is one of the most important of public services. Judges affect each and all our lives.

BSN was instrumental in setting up pre-application workshops, improvements to the JAC outreach work and the Law Society role play video. BSN director, Cordella Bart-Stewart, is a member of the Judicial College Panel of Experts in respect of the social context of judging which includes diversity and equality and works towards delivery of training programs for pre and post appointment. As the profession grows, the competition for appointments remains high, however, the number of vacancies is it a high level and expected to be so for the next few years. It is important that candidates begin to prepare themselves early before making an application.


For information on upcoming appointments and on how to prepare, please go to the JAC website at jac.judiciary.gov.uk. Details of pre-application workshops including free workshops for BME solicitors can be found on the Law Society website, Professional Update or by contacting the Law Society Ethnic Minority Division.

BSN Director (Judiciary access/policy):

Cordella Bart-Stewart


BSN Directors: Joe Mensah-Dankwah & Stephen Friday (Treasurer)

Industry statistics reveal that a significant number of BME solicitors work in sole practitioner or small/high street firms. At BSN we are committed to supporting sole practitioner and high street firms through our workshops with the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA), The Law Society and others on regulation, compliance and insurance and provide a forum to discuss regulatory, training and legal aid reform and related issues. Read more….

​The Times – 18 May 2017:

Pale, stale and male: the heights of the legal world are still not diverse enough…

                                                        The Financial Times – 20 November 2016

Law Schools experiment to increase ethnic diversity…’



BSN Jobs Board 

BSN Jobs Board is a platform for jobs and career opportunities from employers who want to reach out to a truly diverse pool of talent.  Positions covered by BSN Jobs Board will include Solicitors, Attorneys, Barristers, Trainees, Internships, Legal and Business Support.

For those looking for a new role, you will be able to quickly identify employers who are committed to recruiting and providing opportunities on the basis of fairness and equal access.  For more information and to browse vacancies, visit BSN Jobs Board by clicking: http://jobs.blacksolicitorsnetwork.org/.

If you’re an employer or recruitment agency get in touch today to ensure your opportunities are on the BSN Jobs Board.  Please do contact us if you have any queries regarding this service platform:enquiries@blacksolicitorsnetwork.org.

BSN – Get involved! 

BSN is a not-for-profit organisation and relies on volunteers to drive its mission and objectives forward. We are keen for you to have your say in the work of BSN by getting involved through one or more of our committees:

– membership engagement and marketing

– careers – access to the legal profession

– events / social affairs

– in-house (public sector) / in-house (private sector)

– policy and consultations from stakeholders, including the Law Society, SRA, governmental bodies

As well as benefiting from acquiring new transferable skills and networking opportunities, your involvement with a committee will improve the scope and effectiveness of BSN’s services. If you are interested in ‘getting involved’, please email enquiries@blacksolicitorsnetwork.org.

Law Society Council elections – Ethnic Minorities:  ​One of BSN’s directors, Nwabueze Nwokolo, is a long-standing Law Society Council member for ethnic minorities and an active and committed member of the Law Society’s Ethnic Minority Lawyers Division (EMLD).  It has been instrumental to BSN’s work to have one of its directors actively involved in the work of the Law Society Council and EMLD in influencing positive change for ethnic minorities within the legal profession. This Law Society Council seat is up for re-election in the coming weeks.  Please join us in supporting Nwabueze Nwokolo’s re-election to Council by emailing councilelections@lawsociety.org.ukbefore 31 May 2017.  Voting papers will be emailed out on 5 June and voting will close on 26 June 2017. Thank you for your support!
We hope you find this newsletter informative and useful.  We value your feedback  and welcome your support and involvement with our service offering.  Please do feel free to contact us at enquiries@blacksolicitorsnetwork.org.

Kind regards

Paulette Mastin

Black Solicitors Network, Chair





If you no longer wish to receive mail from us, you can unsubscribe
Black Solicitors Network / UK Diversity Legal Awards, c/o Percy Short & Cuthbert 608 Holloway Road, Holloway, London, N19 3PH, United Kingdom, http://diversitylegalawards.org and www.blacksolicitorsnetwork.co.uk