HENRY Hodge, who joined the Law Society presidency race last week, has unveiled a 50-point manifesto aimed at bringing “evolution and change” to the organisation.
Hodge, sitting deputy vice-president and senior partner with London firm Hodge Jones & Allen, entered the fray after vice-president John Young withdrew amid sexual harassment allegations.
The new candidate is confident of beating rivals Eileen Pembridge and Martin Mears.
He says: “I believe when the membership looks at my record, the support I will get and the programme I am talking about they will support me.”
He says colleagues had urged him to throw his hat into the ring. “It is important to give the profession a choice,” he says.
“To leave them with a choice between Eileen Pembridge and Martin Mears would deny them the benefit of someone who is more experienced and can unify the profession better than they can. “
Hodge says Mears labels himself a reactionary, which would cut him off from the profession, and claims Pembridge is restricted to a platform of women's issues and legal aid.
His key priorities include promoting the integrity of solicitors and the profession's status, maintaining good standards of pay and ensuring good service to clients.
Specific targets include reducing the practising certificate fee by 10 per cent, promoting a guideline fee structure for conveyancing and pushing the case for legal aid. He also wants to see more contested elections.
LAW Society presidential candidate Henry Hodge is among the speakers signed to address this year's annual Young Solicitors' Group conference.