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25 January 2017

Northern Ireland Young Solicitors’ Association (NIYSA) AGM

The Northern Ireland Young Solicitors’ Association* (“the NIYSA”) held its AGM on Friday 13th January 2017 and elected its committee for 2017.

At the AGM, the Resolution to amend the Constitution was passed by members. The Constitution now states that all solicitors who have not reached 10 years’ post qualification experience (PQE) are members of the Association.

The 2017 NIYSA committee members are as follows:

· David Cairns (Eamonn McEvoy & Co) – Chairman;

· Emma O’Donnell (Carson McDowell) – Vice Chair;

· Rachael Gamble (Cleaver Fulton Rankin) – Treasurer;

· Ciara Ferguson (JMK Solicitors) – Secretary;

· Chris Kinney (McCallion Keown) – Membership Secretary;

· Lauren Jones (HHD Solicitors) – CPD Co-ordinator;

· Stephanie Johnston (Carson McDowell) – Committee Member;

· Francesca Glynn (Edwards & Company) – Committee Member;

· Owen Williamson (Shean Dickson Merrick) – Committee Member;

· Julie-Ann McCaffrey (Cleaver Fulton Rankin) - Immediate Past Chair;

· Emma McCaul (Simmons Meglaughlin & Orr) - IPLS representative.

The contested election was overseen by Honorary President of the NIYSA the Recorder of Belfast, His Honour Judge McFarland. New NIYSA Chairman David Cairns said the following:

“I am delighted first and foremost to be elected onto the committee and furthermore extremely humbled to be nominated as Chairman this year.

I would like to express my thanks to outgoing committee members, Peter McGettrick (Flynn & McGettrick), Tim Rankin (Cleaver Fulton Rankin), Elaine Keenan (Worthingtons) and Seamus O’Neill (JMK Solicitors) for all their help and assistance throughout the year.

I would also like to thank our immediate Past Chair, Julie-Ann McCaffrey and all the past committee members for all their tireless efforts throughout the year and in particular with the hosting of the European Young Bar Association Conference in April 2016. A particular highlight of which was without question the excellent work of our immediate past Chair Julie-Ann McCaffrey and all the past committee members in securing attorney Jerry Buting from Netflix “Making a Murderer” as the key note speaker

Finally, I would like to sincerely thank the Law Society of Northern Ireland for their longstanding and extremely helpful support of the NIYSA. Following on from an extremely positive year, I hope to continue this momentum in working with the new committee members to engage and represent our members throughout the entire jurisdiction of Northern Ireland. I also look forward to developing new networks with our counterparts across the four jurisdictions of the UK and Ireland and also our colleagues across Europe and further afield.”

For more information about the NIYSA, please visit


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