A Shropshire commercial law firm has become one of the first in the country to appoint a non-lawyer director, using new legislation that came into effect at the end of March 2009.
Blackbourn & Bond, based in Shrewsbury, appointed Mark Callahan to the role of business development director under the terms of the new Legal Services Act, set by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.
Mr Callahan first worked for Blackbourn & Bond earlier this year to conduct an independent strategic review of the firm and its management structure.
The results of the assessment were taken on board by the firm, which changed its name earlier this month to reflect the promotion of Dwight Bond to director and a new corporate identity.
Mr Callahan said: “Nick Blackbourn and Dwight Bond are both very forward-thinking in their approach to business and the law, which stems from having worked with some of the UK’s largest PLC’s and many entrepreneurial business owners. This specialist business experience combined with their approachable and proactive nature clearly differentiates their client services and sets them apart from other lawyers.
“In my role as business development director, I will be focused on driving the company further forward by helping Nick and Dwight reassert and promote their specialist credentials under the new name of Blackbourn & Bond.
“This will also ensure that they concentrate on what they do best; advising clients on business and commercial property law. Using my experience, we will also be adding an extra business development aspect to the services available to the firm’s clients, which again will distinguish Blackbourn & Bond from other, more traditional law practices.”
Dwight Bond said: “We’re delighted that this new legislation allows us to formally recognise the key role Mark has played over the past few months in restructuring our business for future growth. His commercial experience has added a valuable new dimension to our firm, which complements our own business and commerce legal expertise.”
Nick Blackbourn added: “Appointing Mark as our new business development director affords us the opportunity to evolve our service portfolio, thus setting us apart from most other law practices by having the resource to provide clients with bespoke legal/commercial solutions. This will in turn assist us develop the firm, and become even more commercially focused as lawyers for business.”