RBS solicitor Marliese Perks has been named Law Society of Scotland In-house Rising Star Award winner for 2020.

Law Society president Amanda Millar announced the winner at the In-house Legal Virtual Festival today, Tuesday, 6 October.

The 2020 Rising Star Award judges agreed that Marliese’s achievements were very impressive at such an early stage in her career, having played a key role in a number of business-critical matters, working on a variety of complex contractual arrangements and navigating regulatory challenges. She also impressed the judges with the work she had done around innovation and improvement, including a project looking at how behavioural economics could improve how the team provides legal advice, and for leading a working group exploring contract assembly.

Lucia Bobkova, a solicitor in the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service Legal Services Department was named as runner up. The judges were impressed by how Lucia quickly enhanced her knowledge of very technical and specialist legislation connected to the fire service and that she had taken responsibility for bringing a number of key areas of legal work in-house for the first time.

This year’s panel of judges also recognised three of the five finalists as highly commended, praising their enthusiasm, adaptability and ‘can-do’ attitudes.

Highly commended:

  • Lauren Towie, solicitor in Corporate and Property Law team at Glasgow City Council
  • Dylan Lynch, legal counsel at Raytheon UK
  • Debbie Griffiths, trainee solicitor at Cognizant Worldwide Limited

Law Society of Scotland President, Amanda Millar, said: “Many congratulations to our award winner Marliese Perks. At just two years PQE, she has shown exceptional qualities, earning praise for her technical legal abilities and for her ability to lead on innovative projects as a newly qualified solicitor.

“Congratulations to our runner up Lucia Bobkova and to each of our highly commended nominees. Each of them has demonstrated commitment and passion for the legal profession and their in-house roles and has excelled at a very early stage – they will certainly be ones to watch as they progress in their careers.

“All of us in the legal profession have faced exceptional challenges over the past six months. However, the challenges for those early in their careers must be all the more acute. Our judges were highly impressed by the adaptability and resilience shown by all 14 nominees in dealing with issues resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic. They should all be very proud of their achievements.”

The In-house Rising Star Award was launched by the Law Society in 2013 for in-house trainees and solicitors less than five years qualified.

The In-house Rising Star Award 2020 judges were:

  • Catherine Corr, Principal Solicitor, Legal Services team at Scottish Enterprise
  • John Morrison, Legal Counsel at the Phoenix Group
  • Debbie Carroll, Procurator Fiscal Depute
  • Rachael McLean, Head of Strategy and Business Division, Scottish Government Legal Department

Read more about our 2020 finalists

Five finalists shortlisted for In-house Rising Star Award 2020

Five newly qualified, in-house solicitors have been shortlisted for the Society's In-house Rising Star Award 2020. Read more about this year's award finalists.