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Osbornes Appoints Joanne Wescott as Managing Partner

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Osbornes Appoints Joanne Wescott as Managing Partner

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At 41, Jo becomes one of the youngest managing partners in the UK

Joanne Wescott’s promotion follows a stellar career trajectory at Osbornes. Having joined the firm in 2013 as an assistant solicitor, she quickly ascended the ranks, becoming an associate in 2015, a partner in 2017, and joining the equity partnership in 2021. Her legal acumen was spotlighted in 2018 when she appeared in the Supreme Court for the landmark family law case, Mills v Mills.

Outgoing managing partner Stuart Kightley, who served the firm for 30 years and led as managing partner for the past six, was instrumental in selecting his successor. "It was unanimous," Stuart said. "Everyone I spoke to suggested Jo. Since she joined the firm over a decade ago, she has embraced every opportunity that has come her way, showing herself to be a forward thinker, commercially astute, and a strong leader. I know I am leaving the leadership of Osbornes in the best possible hands."

Stuart will continue with the firm as a partner emeritus, reflecting on his tenure: "Jo has been a rising star since she joined us, and I have no doubt she will lead Osbornes to even greater heights."

Jo expressed her enthusiasm for the new role and her vision for the firm. "I love Osbornes. Not only is there a real family feel, but I am proud to be in a firm that actively promotes women. We currently have 26 partners, over half of whom are female. It’s also a great place to develop your career; over 70% of our partners were promoted from within."

She acknowledges the strong foundation laid by her predecessor: "We’ve grown considerably under Stuart’s leadership, and I’m excited to build upon these amazing foundations and take the business to the next level. One of my early priorities will be embracing all that technology has to offer, driving efficiency, and in doing so, demonstrating to our younger solicitors the importance of a good work-life balance."

Jo also paid tribute to Stuart’s influence and mentorship: "On behalf of everyone at the firm, I want to thank Stuart. It is impossible to overstate the positive impact he had on Osbornes. He sets a very high bar, and I’m lucky to have had the benefit of Stuart’s counsel as my mentor over the last year, and I will certainly be combining this wisdom with my own ideas as I continue to develop Osbornes."

Osbornes, which celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2023, was named in the annual list of the UK’s Best Companies to Work For. The firm boasts an average employee age of 38.

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