Herbies kickstarts management elections as joint CEOs announce retirement

Elections are underway at Herbert Smith Freehills as the firm looks for successors to joint CEOs David Willis and Gavin Bell, who are retiring from the firm.

David Willis
David Willis

The new management will takeover the running of the firm from May 2014. The firm said the its governance body, the Herbert Smith Freehills Global Council, would decide whether the role would continue to be be jointly shared.

Willis’ tenure as Herbert Smith managing partner was due to come to an end in April 2013 but was extended by one year as a result of the merger (24 April 2013).

Bell, who became managing partner of Freehills in 2005, has decided to step down to spend time with his family after a period of serious illness.

In a statement Herbert Smith Freehills senior partner Jonathan Scott expressed his gratitude towards both CEOs, describing them as “two of the principal architects of the merger” and attributing much of the success of the transitional management structure to them.