THE president of the Law Society of Scotland has today paid tribute to Oliver Adair, who announced his decision to resign from the Society’s Council.
Oliver (‘Ollie’) Adair is the second longest serving member of the Law Society of Scotland Council and has represented Hamilton and Lanark since May 1996.
He has most recently served as the Society’s legal aid convener, leading on legal aid negotiations with the Scottish Government and Scottish Legal Aid Board.
In early 2011, Mr Adair took an extended leave of absence from Council for health reasons but returned in September.
During this time, he sold his Hamilton based legal firm, Adair & Bryden.
In a letter to his local faculty, Mr. Adair intimated his decision to resign with effect from 1 July 2012 because he no longer worked in the constituency.
A by-election will now be arranged to fill the vacancy.
Mr Adair will continue as legal aid convener but will be taking a four week leave of absence from the criminal legal aid negotiating team for health reasons. Fellow team member Ian Moir of Glasgow will cover Mr Adair’s legal aid responsibilities in his absence.
President of the Law Society of Scotland, Cameron Ritchie, said: “Ollie is one of most liked and most respected members of Council. For sixteen years, he has served his fellow solicitors with skill and distinction. In particular, Ollie helped secure real benefits for the profession during tough rounds of legal aid negotiations and at a time when public budgets were being significantly reduced.
“The fact Ollie returned to Council after a lengthy and serious illness is testament to his dedication and commitment to the profession. All of us on Council will miss his thoughtful contributions, his wise words and good humour.
“I know Ollie will be taking a further leave of absence as legal aid convener in order to recover from an upcoming operation and all of us wish him well for a speedy recovery.”
Oliver Adair said: “It is well known that, during my recent illness, I was required to sell my legal practice and have not had a place of business in the Hamilton and Lanark area since. Whilst there was no constitutional requirement for me to resign my seat on Council, I simply did not think it appropriate to continue to represent my local constituency when I was not practicing in the area. That is why I have decided to step down to allow another to be elected in my place.
“It has been an honour to serve on Council for the last 16 years and I will be very sorry to leave. I am particularly grateful for the immense support I received from fellow Council members and from other solicitors in my local Hamilton and Lanark constituency.
“The Law Society of Scotland is a great organisation with a great history and, I believe, an even greater future. I look forward to doing what I can from outside the Council to support the Society and the wider profession in the years ahead.”
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