The largely ceremonial role, which dates back to the 7th century, includes being responsible for the day-to-day running of The Old Bailey – where Wootton will live for the duration of the year’s post – and attending sessions at the Central Criminal Court.
A spokesperson for A&O said that, while Wootton will remain as a partner while he occupies the post of Sheriff, he will do less client work.
Wootton commented: “The opportunity to help reinforce the message, both at home and abroad, that the City remains one of the global powerhouses is a role I’m delighted to have.
“Most of my clients come from financial and professional services, so I’m very aware of just how strong London is, both in terms of financial performance and community and charitable contributions, despite the recent economic troubles. I’m very much looking forward to the challenges and opportunities the position will present.”
Wootton has been a partner at A&O since 1979 and advises English and foreign companies on corporate transactions, M&A, joint ventures, IPOs, share issues, insolvency and restructuring.