Our Assessors/Consultants

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Fiona du Feu 

Lexcel Assessor and Consultant, non-practising solicitor, Compliance Consultant  

Based London and the North

Experience

Fiona du Feu qualified as a solicitor in 1988 and spent over 20 years in private practice. She now runs her own risk and compliance consultancy for lawyers, with clients from sole practitioners to large multi-site firms, and is a Lexcel Assessor, Trainer, author and Consultant. 

Specialisms

Lexcel, CQS, providing the "how to" of risk management.     

 


Chris Gough
Lexcel assessor/consultant

Based
London, South East & Eastern Counties

Experience
20 years + in law firms & consultancy - fee-earning experience as a volume residential conveyancer in private practice, implementation consultant for legal IT solutions & business services division of a 'top ten' accountancy practice.

Specialisms
IT system implementation (legal accounting & case management systems), business process re-engineering. 


Emily Mayes
Lexcel, Investors in People and SQM assessor and consultant

Based
London and South East

Experience
Generalist HR background. Investors in People assessor/consultant since 2000 and a Lexcel assessor since 2006.  A Legal sector consultant including provision of independent file review service.  SQM assessment since 2011.

Specialisms
Assessment of client organisations to Lexcel Standards. Legal practice management consultancy, Performance management, Risk management and Change management.  


Eric Xuereb 

Non-practising solicitor; LEXCEL Assessor and Consultant; former ISO 9001 Lead Auditor; former Lead Auditor for BARMARK (the Bar Council’s quality assurance standard) until the scheme’s discontinuance in 2013.

Specialism:

Lexcel

Based:

London

Areas covered: London, the Home Counties and East Anglia.

Experience:

Eric is a retired solicitor and senior legal services manager, with over 10 years’ experience as a Lexcel assessor and consultant.

As a former practitioner, and as a Lexcel assessor and consultant, he brings to practices his wide experience of the legal profession together with his detailed practical knowledge of how to achieve and maintain the Lexcel standard across many types of organisation, including:

  • Sole practitioner and niche practices through to national and international multi-site private practice firms
  • Municipal Government in-house legal teams and not-for-profit legal teams
  • Other organisational forms of legal service provider.

Key strengths: Knowledgeable. Professional.

 


Kathy Leahy  

Lexcel/Matrix/Merlin Standard/Assessor/Consultant/Business Coach

Based

West Midlands

Experience

10 years + experience managing and providing business consultancy to all sectors including government department, 7 years Lexcel & 22 years as a local Magistrate sitting in adult court and member of a number of local and regional committees, currently Chair of the West Midlands and Warwickshire Justices Appraisal, Authorisation and Approvals Committee.

Specialisms

Business management programmes, policy development and operational delivery.  

 


 

Neil Partridge

Lexcel assessor, consultant and trainer. GDPR specialist. Cyber security Lead Auditor. Marketing and commercial project leader.

Based

London and Southeast

Experience

Has conducted more than 500 assessment, training and consultancy visits to legal organisations. Delivered 8 Law Society webinars (to date) on GDPR, information security and Lexcel. Speaker at the Law Society’s Lexcel national annual conference in 2018 and 2019, and the Law Society’s 2019 GDPR conference. Has supported more than 100 legal sector organisations for GDPR, including data mapping, updating polices, training and handling Data Subject Access Requests. Neil trained all Lexcel assessors, on behalf of the Law Society, and more than 250 legal practices, on the changes for Lexcel v6.1.  Co-author of the PDA GDPR Supported Guidance Pack and the Cyber Primed cyber/data security standard. Director of commercial projects for multinational businesses. Board member of three companies in the legal compliance, marketing and cyber security sectors, respectively. Board member of a charitable Trust in the City of London.

Specialisms

GDPR/data protection, cyber security, data security, Lexcel, SQM (consultancy), SRA compliance, risk management, project management.


Meltem Kanli
Lexcel Assessor/Consultant/Locum Solicitor

Based
London & South East

Experience
Locum Solicitor, specialist in employment law & HR matters.  25 years + experience at Marks & Spencer Plc Marble Arch store.  Customer service and complaints handling, people management, training and development, risk and compliance management.


Stuart Lee Lexcel Assessor and Consultant, SQM Lead Assessor, Compliance Consultant

Based The North West.

Experience 18 years experience working with the Legal Profession as an assessor, regulator, consultant, policy maker, trainer and contract manager. Lexcel assessor since 2011 assessing all size of legal providers from sole practitioner to practice with 270 staff and 11 offices. 11 years experience at the Legal Aid Agency. Associate SQM Lead Auditor responsible for training assessment team and quality assurance.

Specialisms Lexcel, SQM, Consultancy and Risk Management. Obtained


Claire Ludbrook Lexcel assessor/consultant/trainer

Based North East, but operates nationally and internationally

Experience Law graduate, with LPC.  Experience of working in a firm.  Supported over 40 firms through to achievement of Lexcel and worked with ISO 9001 :2008 in a service environment. 

Specialisms Customer service, quality systems, equality and diversity and best practice. 


Rob Macleod MBE Lexcel assessor/consultant/trainer

Based London and the North

Experience Lexcel assessor since 1998 has worked with private firms, large and small and in-house legal teams. Extensive international experience working with a range of quality assurance standards and compliance frameworks, such as IIP and ISO 9001:2008 in blue chip organisations.

Specialisms strategic planning, people management, management development, equality and diversity, IT and being practical. 


Gayle Audley Lexcel Assessor/Outsourced Commercial Director/Performance Management Coach

Based Yorkshire

Experience

As a former top British tennis player and elite performance coach Gayle knows exactly what it means to be the best and now brings her sporting pedigree into the business arena. After studying law she went on to become an award winning trainer and qualified teaching professional and is privileged to be working with a number of the top UK law firms.

Specialisms

Gayle understands that your people are your greatest asset and it is no longer acceptable that they are good. They have to be the best. Having a delivery that is bold, punchy and results orientated she will help you to build a better business by identifying the marginal gains necessary to achieve maximum results and peak performance. 

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Stuart Blake

Lexcel assessor and consultant, regulatory compliance consultant, trainer

Based

Midlands and South West, operates nationally and internationally

Experience

Chartered Legal Executive with over 30 years' experience in the legal profession and over 15 years in legal practice management intimately involved in Lexcel and regulatory compliance. Consultancy clients have included large multi-national law firms, sole practitioners and everything in-between.

Specialisms

Practical applications and solutions. Policy/procedure development. COLP/MLRO support. Hands on assistance where required.


 

Jane Blackstock

LexcelAssessor/Consultant/ SQM Consultant

Based

Midlands and South West, operates nationally

Experience

Over 20 years running own consultancy business and 19 years as a Lexcel Assessor covering firms of all different sizes nationally.

Specialisms

Providing bespoke assistance to Law Firms in working towards the requirements of Lexcel and providing ongoing support with maintenance of the accreditation.


 

Dawn Lindop 

Lexcel Assessor, SQM Auditor, non-practising solicitor and compliance consultant

Based 

Midlands but will travel

Experience

Qualified as a solicitor in 1990 and spent several years in private practice before joining the Law Society and thereafter the SRA. In over ten years as a senior adviser in the SRA’s Practice Standards Unit Dawn visited hundreds of firms of solicitors of all sizes and types to assess regulatory compliance and help improve their compliance and risk management systems. Since 2011 she has run her own compliance consultancy 

Specialisms

Lexcel, SQM, SRA compliance consultancy, file reviews and COLP/COFA support

 


Debbie Fowler Lexcel Assessor/Consultant/Trainer/Locum Family Lawyer/ Practice Development Specialist

Based W. Midlands

Experience 21 years legal experience, currently a Chartered Legal Executive, Family Lawyer & 10 years Lexcel/Legal Sector consultancy.

Specialisms File review assignments, training, practice development techniques/strategies, and risk management.


Caroline Harris Lexcel/assessor/consultant/Investors in People/qualified non-practising Solicitor

Based West Midlands & South West

Experience 30 years experience in the legal sector, 12 years with IIP & 10 years Lexcel/Legal Sector consultancy & 10 years Lexcel/Legal Sector consultancy.

Specialisms Joint Lexcel/IIP assessments.

 


 

Christine Tallon

Lexcel Assessor and Lexcel accredited consultant/freelance legal risk and compliance consultant

Based: South Wales also covering Mid Wales, South West England, London, Midlands, Gloucestershire, Worcestershire, Herefordshire.

Experience: Qualified as a solicitor in 1991 and spent over 25 years in private practice including at equity partnership level in a medium sized firm in London where she was a member of the Risk & Compliance Committee and involved in applying for Lexcel accreditation and subsequent reaccreditation.

Specialism: Risk & Compliance Consultancy, client care, file reviews. Having had extensive involvement in private practice, Christine understands the issues which arise in practice and is able to provide a practical and pragmatic approach.


 

Cathy Poulter
Lexcel/Investors in People/SQM/CQS/assessor/consultant/trainer

Based
South West

Experience
Experienced ex solicitor, originally admitted to the roll in 1979, now an independent consultant working in the legal sector providing assessment, advice and guidance, approved Law Society project supplier & 10 years Lexcel/Legal Sector consultancy.

Specialisms
Client care, complaints handling, risk and regulatory compliance including Outcomes Focused Regulation & support for COLP/ COFA.


Dafydd Thorne

Lexcel/SQM Assessor/Consultant

Based: South west but works all across the south 

Experience 

Own communications and training consultancy across all business sectors since 2002. More than 10 years working in the legal sector 

Specialisms

Communications. Practice and Performance Management

 


Ian Fuller

Lexcel/Investors in People Assessor/Business Coach

Based

Ian is based in Cornwall and covers the South West

Experience

Assessor with 10 years’ experience of assessing against the Lexcel Standard and around 20 years on Investors in People across a range of organisation sizes and sectors.

Specialisms

Coaching and advising on business planning, leadership and management development, and people management good practice and supporting processes.


 

Samantha Gallagher

Lexcel Assessor and Consultant, Risk and Compliance Consultant and SQM Auditor

Based

Midlands but also covering East Anglia and London

Experience

Risk and Compliance Consultant with a background in conveyancing and regulatory compliance. Worked in private practice for a number of years before joining the Law Society and then the SRA. Spent over 10 years undertaking regulatory inspections for the SRA’s Practice Standards Unit and assisting firms to meet their regulatory obligations.

Now as an independent consultant supports legal practices with meeting their SRA obligations and the requirements of relevant legislation and accreditations. Also offers tailored compliance solutions to help businesses develop and embed effective quality and risk management processes. These solutions include drafting policies and procedures, developing and implementing file review processes and internal audit functions.

Specialisms

Lexcel, regulatory compliance, risk management including file reviews/audits, CQS and SQM. 

 


Michael Johnson

Assessor for Lexcel, Auditor for ISO 9001 and also the LawNet Quality Standard (LQS).

Based

South West, but carries out assessments and audits throughout England, South Wales and in Continental Europe. 

Experience

Practised as a Solicitor for 21 years, in Private Practice (commercial and relocation/residential property, liquor licensing, from Trainee Solicitor to Equity Partner, including as Managing Partner) and for 3 years as COO of an International Title Insurance Group. Since 2010 has carried 100’s of audits and assessments predominantly for Legal Practices (private practice and in-house) but also for other non-legal sector Organisations.

 

Specialisms

Whilst independently assessing and auditing, seeing compliance through the eyes of the Practice, all staff and those who have the responsibility to introduce, maintain and monitor it. 


 

Neil Huxtable Lexcel/Investors in People/AQS/SQM/assessor/consultant

Based South & North Wales

Experience Business owner providing consultancy on organisation development and human resources, IIP assessor experience & 10 years Lexcel/Legal Sector Consultancy.

Specialisms Welsh speaker, organisational development, performance management & joint Lexcel/IIP assessments.



 

Jeff Williams-Jones

Lexcel assessor / consultant; management consultant; qualified executive coach and leadership mentor; lecturer in management subjects at undergraduate and postgraduate levels; Investors in People practitioner for 18 years.

Based

Wales but will travel

Experience

35 years as manager/owner of a trading company, Entrepreneurship, University Teaching.

Specialisms

Welsh speaker, strategic development (business planning), human resource management


 

Roger Young Lexcel assessor/commercial business coach

Based London, Midlands, South Wales & France

Experience 25 years + commercial business, management and board level experience & 10 years Lexcel/Legal Sector consultancy.

Specialisms Strategic planning, organisational change, people management, financial appraisal & planning, risk management, leadership & Director mentoring.


 

Gemma Shanks

Lexcel Assessor and Consultant / Compliance Consultant / Non-practising solicitor.

Based 

North East. Operates nationally.

Experience

Non-practising solicitor with over 12 years’ experience working with the Legal Profession and the Lexcel Standard. Extensive Lexcel experience working with a significant number, and variety of firms from sole practitioners to multi nationals and local authorities.

As a consultant, assists law firms helping them to implement effective processes and procedures to achieve the Law Society’s Lexcel standard and regulatory compliance. Frequently supports firms through complex structure change projects, helping them to navigate through the process quickly and efficiently. Excellent communication skills and a pragmatic and intuitive approach allows for working well with all personnel within firms, from senior management through to support staff, to achieve the best results possible.

Specialisms

Lexcel, File Reviews, CQS, SRA Compliance Consultancy, COLP and COFA support and Risk Management

 


 

Kate Williams

Lexcel Assessor; Solicitor; Justice of the Peace

Based

South West 

Experience

Worked as a commercial property solicitor in private practice and in-house for seven years, and continue to maintain practicing certificate working for small, family owned company. Now an independent consultant providing advice and assessment services for benchmark and best practice standards.

Specialisms

Mapping and links between Lexcel and Investors in People standards; dual delivery of Lexcel and Investors in People assessments; positive people management and employee engagement; tailored advice and support to work towards improvement areas.

 


 

Malcolm Lawson

Lexcel, LawNet, ISO 9001, SQM, AQS (formerly GQM), CQS. Assessor/Auditor/Consultant/Trainer

Based

North East England

Experience

Over 19 years' previous experience as a Lexcel assessor/consultant working with a variety of legal firms from sole practitioners to multi nationals and in-house legal departments of local authorities. Significant experience of working with and providing consultancy support to businesses across all sectors including, education, charities and international blue chip organisations. Established and sold a number of small businesses 

Specialisms

Customer focused approach. Practical experience as an owner of numerous small businesses and therefore empathy with business leaders. Leadership and succession planning. Performance Management, IT and Business Continuity.


Philip Knight 

Lexcel Assessor, Consultant, coach and training provider.

Based

North Yorkshire with national portfolio. 

Experience

Delivered Lexcel consultancy support and assessment services since the launch of the standard.  Retained by law firms to assist with all aspects of practice management. 

Specialisms: 

Risk, compliance and all aspects of practice management through on-going work within the legal sector

 


 

Raj Ali

Lexcel Assessor and Consultant, Non-practising Solicitor and Business Consultant

Based

Yorkshire covering Nationwide

Experience

Over 10 years’ experience in compliance and business management. Experienced former property solicitor who has experience of working in-house, a top 20 law firm and managing a firm employing 50 people. Runs a business consultancy providing business support services to law firms and SMEs. 

Specialisms

Lexcel, CQS and Regulatory Compliance

 


 

Paul McCluskey

Lexcel Trainee Assessor and Consultant  / Law firm banking specialist/Business coach 

Based

East England/London.    Operates nationally and internationally 

Experience

Over 30 years financial services experience and former UK Head of Professional Practices at Lloyds Bank .  For the past 15 years I have specialised in helping law firms to manage their finances and operations.  Spanning across 3 UK law society jurisdictions I led a team of 100 Lexcel accredited managers to service the needs of over 3,000 legal practices. 

Now an independent consultant I have the ability to support firms with the financial and risk management needs of the business.  I have an exceptional reputation for delivery with solid breadth and depth of experience leading large teams across business development, operational, project, risk, sales and strategic planning/execution

Specialisms

Supporting law firm to improve their financial management offering practical solutions to structure client money to maximise cash room operations and guide firms around funding requirements and access to funds.  Support firms through fraud awareness training and will contribute through non-executive director roles or via a flexible retainer arrangement.

 


 

 

 

 

 


Stuart Blake

Lexcel assessor and consultant, regulatory compliance consultant, trainer

Based

Midlands and South West, operates nationally and internationally

Experience

Chartered Legal Executive with over 30 years' experience in the legal profession and over 15 years in legal practice management intimately involved in Lexcel and regulatory compliance. Consultancy clients have included large multi-national law firms, sole practitioners and everything in-between.

Specialisms

Practical applications and solutions. Policy/procedure development. COLP/MLRO support. Hands on assistance where required.

 


 

Eric Xuereb
Lexcel/Barmark/assessor/consultant/trainer

Based
London, South East & Scotland

Experience
A retired solicitor and senior legal manager with over 30 years' experience in both private practice and local government & 10 years Lexcel/Legal Sector consultancy.


Roger Young
Lexcel assessor/commercial business coach

Based
London, Midlands, South Wales & France

Experience
25 years + commercial business, management and board level experience & 10 years Lexcel/Legal Sector consultancy.

Specialisms
Strategic planning, organisational change, people management, financial appraisal & planning, risk management, leadership & Director mentoring.


Rob Macleod MBE
Lexcel assessor/consultant/trainer

Based
North East, but operates nationally and internationally

Experience
Lexcel assessor since 1998 has worked with private firms, large and small and in-house legal teams. Extensive international experience working with a range of quality assurance standards and compliance frameworks, such as IIP and ISO 9001:2008 in blue chip organisations.

Specialisms
Strategic planning, people management, management development, equality and diversity, IT and being practical.

 


Should you require help or support with any legal sector issue please refer to the vast range of specialisms currently displayed on our Lexcel Assessor Profile. Or Contact John.edwards@recognisingexcellence.co.uk who will signpost you to the Specialist best suited to provide the support you need.