Law Society seeking independent voice on governing board

The New Zealand Law Society is seeking a non-lawyer to provide an independent perspective at meetings of its governing board.

“This is an important development in our commitment to a process of significant cultural change within the Law Society itself,” Law Society president Kathryn Beck says in a media release.

“This will be the first time in our 149-year existence that someone from outside the legal profession is actively involved in helping set the Law Society’s direction. Our board provides sound governance at present and represents the profession admirably. At the same time, we recognise the benefits of increasing the diversity of inputs and viewpoints into the Law Society at a time when it is actively working to manage the cultural change to which we are committed.”

The position is described as an independent board observer, to meet the requirements of the Law Society’s constitution. Beck says the successful applicant will have full speaking rights at each meeting of the Law Society Board.

The board comprises the president and four vice-presidents, representing Auckland, the central North Island, Wellington and the South Island. All positions are elected.

“The board meets every two months. This will be a paid role, unlike the vice-presidents who provide their time voluntarily,” Beck says.

“We are looking for a person with governance experience and a creative thinker who is capable of challenging ideas and influencing others to drive change. Commercial expertise is important, as is experience in diversity and inclusion, cultural change and development.”

Applications for the role close at 10am on September 3, 2018.

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