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Three shortlisted as finalists for the Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year 2022

Date posted: 12 July 2022

Three of the Wilsons team have been shortlisted as finalists at the prestigious Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year Awards to be held on the 12th of July 2022.

For 35 years of service to Wilsons we are so pleased that Lesley Kennedy has been shortlisted as a finalist in the inaugural support staff category. Her nomination comprised many fond words from those who have worked alongside her. Here is just one example;

From finding the missing stationary key, booking train tickets, managing the cleaning of two offices, keeping reception running, to organising events, Lesley is the person to go to.  Lesley has a way about her that people gravitate to.  She is kind, compassionate and professional.  She truly cares about people being happy and content in and outside of their workplace.  She also loves working for Wilsons.  She truly enjoys her job and you can see that every day.  Lesley never ceases to have time for you.  You can knock on the door, you always know you will have a welcome and someone who will truly listen and help you, or in some cases just listen.  In a busy working environment, which throws up all sorts of issues, you always knew you could knock on Lesley’s door. 


For his brilliant immigration work partner Chris McKendry has been shortlisted as a finalist in the social welfare category. From  the nomination……Chris is an exceptionally brainy, predominantly legal aid immigration stalwart who provides each and every client with excellent service, preparing, arguing and, where relevant, litigating their often complex legal matters tenaciously and robustly. His reputation for doing all of the above with his head down and with no fanfare has spread so far and wide that, when emailing me with a reference for Chris, one well-known QC, tongue in cheek, commented: I gather that Chris has been badgered to stop hiding his light under a bushel.


Rebecca Ives

For her fantastic public law work associate solicitor Rebecca Ives has been shortlisted as a finalist in the public law category. From the nomination….Rebecca has shown an unwavering commitment to her clients across a broad range of public law challenges to central and local government. She combines real technical expertise and knowledge with a profoundly human touch and modest approach to her work. She works with passion and tenacity to uphold the rights of her clients without the slightest interest in drawing attention to herself… such client explains: “Before I met Rebecca I had met lots of lawyers who told me there was nothing they could do to help me. But Rebecca was ready to listen to me…In our appointments I often became really distressed but she would help me to calm down. She did more than the work of a lawyer. If other lawyers were like her then the world would be a better place”.


We wish all of our finalists the best of luck at the awards ceremony and congratulations to all the legal aid lawyers nominated in all categories.