We celebrated the Sunderland Law Society Annual Dinner on Friday 24th November 2017 at the Stadium of Light. We had a wonderful evening with a fabulous dinner and enjoyed the company of some of the Law Firms from the City.
An extract from Janine Hobson, President of the Sunderland Law Society's Speech:-
It has truly wonderful for me to be President of Sunderland Law Society and the dinner was in my opinion a fabulous occasion. It was great that so many could attend. It has been such a privilege to be part of the Sunderland Law Society as its President this year. I have really enjoyed representing Sunderland Law Society at Durham Cathedral matins service earlier this year.
My speech preparation has gone through a number of phases akin to the late Elisabeth Kübler-Ross' Five Stages of Grief:
* Initially, denial....it's such a long time away, surely I wont have to make a speech?
* Then, a little bit of anger....Why did you agree to this, Janine?
* Bargaining a depression came next, along with the wish that I had taken my notebook to other speeches at dinners to gain some desperately needed inspiration!
* And finally acceptance, interspersed with a little bit of panic....Abraham Lincoln only said 247 words in his famous Gettysburg address....maybe I could do that?
In the end I decided to follow the tradition of just saying a few things about being President of your Law Society, about myself, my journey and my reflections on it all; I will also introduce you to someone I support in the City of Sunderland...Connect Network Sunderland, bringing Christians, Churches and communities together by building an active network that encourages conversation to bring about transformation of our City. https://www.connectnetwork.uk/
One of the highlights of my year so far has been attending the Law Society's Presidents and Secretaries conference at Chancery Lane. During his speech Matthew Bourne told us that the President of the French Law Society is provided with chauffeur driven car and a grace and favour flat in Paris. Unfortunately I don't receive perks like that. I have, however, had the privilege to wear this magnificent chain of office - when I wore it at the Legal Matins service at Durham Cathedral I was asked if I was the Mayor! While serving as Deputy I was present with a silver snuff box containing vintage snuff given to me in a Primark carrier bag - I doubt very much whether the President of the French Law Society would get that!
Sunderland Law Society has existed for nearly 200 years and I am honoured to be it's fifth female president. My year as Present is flashing passed. I am very much enjoying working with the members of our committee to move things along developing a new website. , enjoying our time together as members at our Summer Event at the Hilton Garden, liaising with fellow Society members in Newcastle and Teeside sharing ideas and representing your voice and hopefully being a channel of information for you all.
I recently had the pleasure of seeing Rob Brydon live in Newcastle. He described Sunderland as like a Channel 4 documentary. I believe that our great City if changing from a City of park parks to ....hopefully....a City of Culture. We will be tuning in on Thursday evening between 7-7.30pm on 7th December to watch the One Show on BBC to find out if we have the achievement of being City of Culture 2021.
On a sad note I do want us all to remember 3 former members of the Sunderland legal community who have recently passed away, they are David Hammond, Ken Hastie and very recently Stan Potts. May they rest in peace.
Before finishing, I want to say a big thank you to you all for coming along this evening. Particular thanks for our very kind sponsors Northumbrian Water. Thanks to my husband Jon, and children Katie and Peter for your support; thanks to Angela Ashcroft and all my colleagues and friends. Thank you to all the members of our Society and in particular to Fiona Aitken for organising this event. Thank you also to Sarah in her absence this evening for all of her hard work as Secretary of the Society, to David for his work as treasurer, to George for his work as Vice President to John for arranging Sunderland Law Society training events, to for helping so much with the new website which should be live for the New Year, to Laura for becoming our membership assistant.
We will keep you posted on Janine's attendance at various events in the next few months.