Lovells’ Harris wins contested leadership election

Lovells' Harris wins contested leadership electionLovells managing partner David Harris has been re-elected for a second four-year term following a contested election that saw European head Harald Seisler put himself forward for the role.

Voting took place at the firm’s annual partnership conference, held in Vienna on Friday and Saturday, with Harris confirmed as the victor on Friday evening. His new term will begin at the start of May next year.

Harris said: “I’ve been very pleased by the level of support I’ve received from across the entire firm throughout this election.

“Our goal is to ensure we’re one of the legal profession’s global elite, turned to by clients for their most complex work around the world. We’re in a much stronger position than when I first took on this role in 2005 – our financial and business performance has significantly improved and there’s a strong feeling of confidence across the practice and in the market about the firm.”

The firm has proved to be one of the strongest performers in the market at the half-year stage, posting revenue growth of 15 per cent for the first six months of the financial year.

According to Harris, the fact the election was contested has allowed the entire partnership to have a say in the path the firm should now follow.

“The election has allowed us to have a good debate within the firm about where we want to be,” he said. “There is a strong consensus to position the firm among the leaders in the market, building on all we have achieved over the last few years.

“I’d like to thank Harald for his contribution to that debate.”

Both candidates spent time visiting every office in Lovells’ network in the run up to the election, with Seisler’s campaign focusing on giving greater autonomy to individual offices.

Now the vote for the main job has taken place the firm will begin the election process on a number of regional and practice head roles. These elections would have taken place in Vienna but were postponed until January to allow whoever won the managing partner role to make their recommendations to the partnership council.