Thought leaders and executives who help dissect complex and interlinked forces transforming economies, industries, and global issues for AILFN conferences.
Amar Sarwal Amar Sarwal, Vice President and Chief Legal Strategist - Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC)
Member of ACC Executive Team, reporting to its President & CEO. Associate General Counsel - Association of Corporate Counsel; General Litigation Counsel - United States Chamber of Commerce; Principal - DC Appeals; Associate - Jones Day; Judicial Law Clerk United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit; Judicial Law Clerk, United States District Court for the Western District of Louisiana; University of Michigan Law School, Doctor of Law (JD)
Kevin Arnold, CEO Nexia. Kevin is responsible for the leadership, strategic development and operational management of a global network of accounting and consulting firms. Nexia International member firms operate in 115 countries with over 600 offices and 28,000 professional and support staff generating aggregate fee revenues of US$ 3,207bn.
Stephen Blundell, Head of Acritas Advisors, Acritas. Steve has been one of the leaders in consulting to professional firms for more than a decade. Having worked originally for Deloitte and PwC, Steve was one of three founders of Gracechurch Consulting in 2001. He then formed Redstone in 2014 to provide an international management consultancy for professional firms in all parts of the world.
Dominic Carman, Writer and Journalist, Legal Week. Described by Legal Week as ‘a leading legal journalist, researcher and author’, I execute bespoke projects for international law firms and investment banks. I also contribute to Legal Week, Legal Business, the Sunday Times, Guardian, Telegraph, Daily Mail, and the Times, where I was a regular feature writer for several years.
Mark A. Cohen, Esq., CEO and Founder, Legal Mosaic, High-level, hands-on experience in many different areas of the legal ecosystem. This has included turns as a civil trial lawyer of “bet the company” cases; BigLaw partner; Founder and Managing Partner of a multi-city national litigation boutique firm; Federally Appointed Receiver of an international aviation parts business with operations on 4 continents; early adapter of legal technology; co-Founder of Clearspire, a groundbreaking “two-company model” law firm/legal service provider; Distinguished Lecturer of Law at Georgetown; Northwestern Pritzker School of Law Center for Practice Engagement and Innovation Distinguished Fellow; Forbes columnist; and international speaker. CEO of LegalMosaic, a repository for my thought leadership content, and a legal consulting business. I am also the Chair of the Advisory Board and Chief Strategy Officer at Elevate Legal Services.
Dalton Albrecht, Partner, Ernst & Young LP, Couzin Taylor LLP, Trade Law and Customs practice leader Canada for EY/Couzin Taylor. Represents clients on international trade law (AD/CV) and WTO matters. Appears before the Canadian International Trade Tribunal, Tax Court of Canada and Federal Courts, as well as the Customs and VAT Authorities. Also advises on cross-border GST matters (VAT), excise taxes, customs value and tariff classification, and export controls/sanctions. Professional Memberships Law Society of Upper Canada; Past Chair, CBA Trade, Customs & Sales Tax Section, IBA, ABA.
Melissa Davis, Managing Director, MD Communications As founder and Managing Director, Melissa Davis leads the legal PR, social media and legal directories teams within MD Communications. She works closely with the PR Directors on a day-to-day basis to ensure a high level of service, and supports clients to challenge the status quo when it comes to the how and why of communicating their critical messages. As the former Head of Media and PR at the Law Society, Melissa was recognised as one of the leaders who instilled a campaign driven edge to the professional body and the solicitors’ profession. She has a proven track record of delivering high-level brand and PR strategies for over 18 years in political, legal and commercial environments.
Stephen Denyer, Director of Strategic Relationships, The Law Society of England & Wales. He is responsible for all the Society’s strategic relationships with leading stakeholders in private practice, in ‘new law’ enterprises and working in-house as well as with local law societies, governments, universities and law schools in the UK and internationally; and for promoting London as a global legal hub. Prior to joining the Law Society in 2014 , Stephen spent more than 36 years with Allen & Overy. During his career with that firm he was responsible for establishing, expanding or managing 11 of the firm's international offices and had management responsibility for teams comprising several hundred fee earners and support staff from many different countries.
Sam Everatt, Executive Director, Ius Laboris Appointed Executive Director in 2010, Sam has over 15 years general management experience from a number of multinational companies. He has spent the last 6 years in the legal sector, based in the UK and Italy. Sam leads the headquarters team and is based in Brussels. He is responsible for the general management and oversight of all business areas of Ius Laboris. He has a BSC (Hons), MSC and an MBA from Warwick Business School.
Graeme Gordon, Praxity, CEO/Executive Director. Graeme is a chartered accountant and prior to joining Praxity was Managing Director and Senior Tutor of Emile Woolf Group, the international training and development firm. He was also previously Group Finance Director of a technology company listed on the London Stock Exchange.
Lindsay Griffiths, Director of Global Relationship Management, International Lawyer Network. In this capacity, Ms. Griffiths works closely with the Network’s Executive Director on the oversight and management of day-to-day operations of the International Lawyers Network (ILN). She develops strategies and implementation plans to achieve the ILN’s goals, and shares responsibility with the Executive Director for recruitment, member retention, and a high level of service to members. She is engaged in the legal industry to stay on top of trends, both in law firms and law firm networks.
Susan Hackett, Esq., CEO, Legal Executive Leadership Susan founded Legal Executive Leadership in the Fall of 2011 after serving for 22 years as the Senior Vice President and General Counsel of the Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC] in Washington, DC. During her career at ACC, Susan held a number of roles and responsibilities. Often referred to as the “voice of the in-house bar,” she is most widely recognized for founding and fostering the ACC Value Challenge initiative (to reconnect value to the cost of legal services), advancing “leading practices” and benchmarking conversations for CLOs and law department operations executives, and driving ACC’s advocacy efforts [including ACC’s amicus program, attorney-client privilege protection, the development of in-house legal ethics and professionalism resources, testimony and representation before decision-making authorities, in-house corporate responsibility initiatives, and multijurisdictional practice (MJP) reform].
Vincent Huck, Group Editor - Accountancy, International Accountancy Bulletin; The Open University Postgraduate Certificate in Human Rights and Development Management City University London, International journalism Rhodes University, Journalism Universidade de Coimbra, International relations INSEEC, ECE Lyon, Diplôme de commerce Business, marketing, finance.
Nancy Jessen, Senior Vice President – Legal Business Solutions, UnitedLex, Her focus also includes operationalizing the vision through a resource plan that balances the use of internal and external resources and the effective deployment of simplified processes and enabling technology. Nancy is known for her depth of knowledge and passion for driving sustainable improvement with her clients. During the course of her career, Nancy has supported and partnered with the industry-leading organizations, including ACC (Association of Corporate Counsel) and IACCM (International Association for Contract & Commercial Management) to define and promote industry best practices that raises the understanding and effectiveness of organizations beyond her direct client base.
Imogen Lee, Director of International Marketing and Communications with a demonstrated history of working in the professional services industry and B2B marketing.
Richard S. Levick, Esq., Chairman and CEO, Levick Strategies under his leadership, LEVICK has set new standards in global communications and brand protection for corporations, countries, and major institutions. Mr. Levick is one of the communications industry’s most important spokespersons and thought leaders. A powerful advocate for the strategic initiatives that companies must pursue in today’s perilous environment, he regularly addresses corporate boards as well as industry and government leaders around the world, providing guidance on their most complex communications and reputation management challenges. He is featured in, and authors, countless articles, and is a frequent guest on prime time national and international television programs.
Paul Marmor, Partner, Head of Dispute Resolution and Commercial Litigation, Sherrads. Paul is the firm’s International Development partner, and is very active in the International Bar Association, the American Bar Association, the Law Society’s International Division and in the Alliott Group international alliance of law and accountancy firms.
Fiona McAllister, Solicitor and Owner, Mundays. Director, CICERO League of International Lawyers. Fiona has more than 25 years’ experience on resolution of advising on contractual and in employment partnership and shareholder relationships, particularly family businesses. Her experience relates to issues on formation to progression and trading to the breakdown of a business relationship and Fiona works at resolving a client’s needs to a satisfactory commercial conclusion as quickly and effectively as possible and in a sympathetic manner. In particular Fiona also focuses on work with an international aspect as a director of CICERO, League of International Lawyers, the network of international law firms of which Mundays is a member.
Stephen J. McGarry, Esq., BA, MA, JD, LLM (Taxation) President, AILFN, Inc.; Founder, Lex Mundi; Founder, World Services Group. As the founder of WSG he grew it to more than 21,000 professionals in over 650 offices. As the founder he grew Lex Mundi to become the world's largest law firm network whose 160 members now have 21,000 attorneys in 600 offices. WSG and Lex Mundi have more than 2% of all the lawyers on earth whose members bill their clients an estimated $20 billion dollars annually.
Robert Millard, Head of Strategy, Partner, The Moller Group. Rob founded Cambridge Strategy Group in 2012. He is a well-known personality in the global PSF strategy and business advisory field, with a well-respected reputation especially amongst law firms in several major global centres. His advisory work is particularly future-focused, drawing on the most up-to-date concepts of innovation, design thinking and scenario planning. Formerly an in-house business strategist at Linklaters, Rob has practiced as a strategy and business management consultant to professional service firms since 2001. His clients span the globe. Besides his professional practice, Rob is co-chair of the International Bar Association’s Law Firm Management Committee and a past chair of the American Bar Association International Law Practice Management Forum. He has co-authored four books on law firm strategy and management. As part of his own ‘pro bono’ work, Rob plays a leading role in an IBA initiative to enhance business management practices among smaller law firms in sub-Saharan Africa. Rob holds a Masters in Business Administration degree from Henley and is currently a PhD candidate at the Adam Smith Business School at the University of Glasgow, researching value creation in law firm mergers.
Michael Napier, Principal. Michael Napier was awarded the CBE in 2005 following a long and successful legal career championing the reform and modernization of the civil justice system. As a QC and solicitor (non-practicing), Mike was voted ‘Lawyer of the Year’ in the 2012 Legal Business awards for 30 years as senior partner leading Irwin Mitchell ‘from a small Sheffield practice to the national powerhouse it is today on the brink of becoming a pioneering ABS firm’ (it now is). An accredited mediator focusing on the delivery of fair and pragmatic solutions to complex problems.
Fernando Pelaez, Fernando Pelaez Consulting, Former President of IBA, Fernando joined Hoet Pelaez Castillo & Duque in 1977. He is an active participant in the development of the corporate area in the Firm and contributes to its strategic management. Fernando is also a recognized member of the international legal community. He is one of the pioneers of advocacy's global projection around the world, being the Founder and Chair of the Latin American Regional Forum of the International Bar Association (IBA), as well as President of the IBA (2009-2010), Vice President (2007-2008), Secretary General (2005-2006), Chair of the IBA's Section on Business Law (SBL) (2002-2004), SBL Vice Chair (2000-2002), and SBL Secretary Treasurer (1998/2000). He was also the Chairman of the Federation of Binational Chambers of Commerce of the European Community (FEDEUROPA) from 1981 to 1982, and Chairman of Lex Mundi from 1992 to 1993.
Lloyd Pearson, Principal, Lloyd Pearson, 393 Communications Lloyd has held senior editorial positions at the market’s leading legal directories and in-house directories management roles at top law firms in the U.S and U.K. My combined experience of legal directory publishing, in-house law firm directories management, and as an independent consultant to law firms around the world, gives me a full-circle perspective and insight into the world of legal directories.
Tony Reiss, Author, Speaker, Coach, Consultant of two volumes of THE BD HANDBOOK FOR LAWYERS: Prospects to Advocates and Pitch Perfect. MA, Oxford University, St Catherine's College, MPhil, University of Reading, Principal Tutor, MBA for Lawyers, Centre for Law Firm Management, Nottingham Trent University, Tutor, IE Business School, Lawyers Management Programme, Madrid & London Executive Coaching Practitioner, Certified Master Coaching Practitioner.
Michael Reiss von Filski, LLM, Global CEO, GGI; Chairman, AILFN, Inc. Member of the Board of Directors. Michael is also director of a Swiss based Family Office and Consulting Firm, having over fifteen years’ experience in advisory services. He is accredited as observer to the European Parliament and serves in the Advisory Committee of EGIAN (European Group of International Accounting Networks and Associations, ) and is the Chairman of AILFN (Association of International Law Firms Networks).
Michael Roch, Global Practice Leader, Internal Consulting Group 20+ years in alliances, joint ventures, partnerships. Resolve intimate strategic & organizational challenges. Knowledge-intensive sectors, financial services, technology, energy. Europe, Africa, Asia, North America.
Neil Rose, Founder and Editor, Legal Futures. Kevin is a qualified solicitor and has been a legal journalist since 1995. He is the founder and editor of Legal Futures, a news-driven website providing market intelligence for law firms of the future. He is a recognized market commentator on ABSs, legal regulation, and the future of the market. Formerly deputy editor of the Law Society Gazette.
Steven M. Richman, Esq., Partner, Clark Hill, practices in the areas of domestic and international commercial law, including mediation, litigation and arbitration, and appellate work, including distributorships, intellectual property, agency, art and photography law, professional responsibility and contracts. He is president of the Board of Trustees of the New Jersey State Bar Foundation and chair of the New Jersey State Bar Association's International Law Committee. In addition, Steven is a member of the editorial board of The New Jersey Law Journal. Within the American Bar Association, Steven is vice-chair of the ABA's Section of International Law, and serves in the ABA House of Delegates. He co-chairs the Section's Professional Ethics Committee. Within the International Bar Association, he chairs the IBA's Multidisciplinary Practice Committee, serves on the Bar Issues Commission Policy Committee, and on the advisory council to the IBA's Section on Public and Professional Interest division. Admitted to practice in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, New York and California, he is a 1980 graduate of New York University Law School, where he was a member of the Order of the Coif, and a graduate of Drew University.
Martin Sharp, OBE, Executive Director, DFK International is a world-wide association of independent accounting firms and business advisers. Responsible for coordinating international referrals between member firms and creating special value for members through training and networking events. Works at board level and with members whose collective turnover is in excess of $US 1 billion and staff totals 10,000 experts providing accounting, assurance, tax, legal and business advisory services. With over 30 years’ experience as an officer in the Royal Air Force, has worked extensively at the strategic level nationally and internationally.
Wendy W. Taylor, Steptoe & Johnson LLP, Chief Marketing & Business Development Officer. Formerly, Senior Consultant, LawVision Group as an in-house legal marketer, fourteen of those as Chief Marketing Officer for three AmLaw 50 firms. Throughout the course of her career, Wendy has worked closely with law firm leadership to drive revenue growth across practices, expand client relationships, develop strategic plans and build brand awareness globally. A natural strategist with solid business acumen, strong operational talent and a passion for delivering results, clients rely on Wendy to advise on business development strategy, business development coaching and training, training for/or conducting client interviews and client retention.
Richard Tromans, Founder and Consultant, Tromans Consulting I advise law firms on strategy and innovation. Practice Areas include: • Strategic Advice •Innovation Analysis and Intelligence, (especially re. AI and legal Automation) • New Market and Growth Analysis • Law Firm Mergers
Timothy Wilson, OBE, Chief Executive, MSI Global Alliance Tim Wilson has been the Chief Executive of MSI Global Alliance since 2014. Before joining MSI, Tim was a director of an international charity. Prior to that he was in the British Army for 27 years where he served in Iraq (three times), Bosnia, Cyprus, Northern Ireland, Kuwait, Germany and Canada. He commanded a Task Force of 1000 personnel in Iraq and a large UK training establishment of over 3000 personnel before leaving the Army to pursue a commercial career. Tim Wilson was educated at Sandhurst, King’s College, London.
Mary K. Young, Consultant, Zeughauser Mary K Young is a legal industry strategist and marketing expert with a track record of corporate strategy and branding success. Her work developing and implementing strategic growth plans for law firms builds on decades of experience with strategic planning, market research, and branding. She is known for insightful analysis, producing tangible results, and leading through collaboration. Since she joined Zeughauser Group in 2006, leading law firms have relied on her to craft powerful growth plans and branding programs that resonate with law firm clients. Mary K spent ten years at Kraft Foods where she developed and implemented profit and revenue growth strategies for some of the company's most important brands. Mary K established her reputation as a legal innovator while serving as chief marketing officer of Howrey LLP from 2000-2006. Mary K holds an M.B.A. from the Anderson School of Management at UCLA and an A.B. from Vassar College.