Ethnic Minority Division Committee members

 Chair: Koser Shaheen

Koser is a practice development lawyer at Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP, general secretary of the Association of Muslim Lawyers, and a member of Cleary Gottlieb’s London diversity committee. She qualified as a capital markets associate at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP and has recently been elected as council member for BAME constituency.

 Vice-chair: Evelyn Ofori Koree

Evelyn is an award-winning Solicitor-Advocate (All Higher Courts) and Principal of Descartes Solicitors. She graduated with a First class LLB (Hons.) from London South Bank University and was a Wolfson Scholar of Lincoln's Inn, where she was also called to the Bar in 2001. Evelyn also holds an LLM from the University of Cambridge and is also an Attorney of the State of New York, USA. Evelyn was elected to the Law Society's Council in 2017 and is also a member of the Law Society's Immigration Law and Regulatory Processes Committees.

 Council member: Nwabueze Nwokolo

Nwabueze was admitted as a barrister and solicitor of the Supreme Court of Nigeria in 1978, and as a solicitor in England and Wales in 1995. She was chair of the National Black Solicitors Network in 2010 and co -chair of the Minority Lawyers Conference 2010/2011. She is a certified mortgage specialist and holds the Institute of Financial Services’ Commercial and Mortgage Lending Diploma.

 Sundeep Bhatia

Sundeep is an accredited mediator, a solicitor advocate with higher rights (criminal) and a duty solicitor. He recently established a pressure group, Asian Lawyers GB, to highlight issues affecting BME lawyers. Sundeep is also chair of the Law Society Regulation Affairs Board.

 Rajiv Sharma

Raj is group legal director and company secretary at Wincanton Plc. He is a member of the Society of Asian Lawyers and has been involved in a variety of pro bono programmes, including serving on two regional boards of Young Enterprise, a leading UK enterprise education charity.


 Umar Kankiya

Umar is a solicitor and head of Mental health for Sternberg - Reed solicitors. He has represented people detained under the Mental Health Act since 2011 and has been a Law Society Mental Health Accredited Member and Qualified Solicitor since 2012. Umar is also a trustee for the charity Lovelife Generation.

 Angeli Vadera

Angeli is a solicitor at Keoghs Solicitors and vice-chair of the Hindu Lawyers Association. Her primary role on the committee is to promote the interests of Hindu lawyers and encourage them to engage with the Law Society. She also has a strong interest in supporting south Asian women in the profession.

 Maria Seale

Maria qualified as a chartered legal executive in 1997 and as a solicitor in 2001. She previously worked as senior solicitor to the Fitness to Practice team at the General Optical Council and has spent 21 years in private practice working for firms such as Lewis Silkin, Russell-Cooke, and Veale Wasbrough Vizards.

 Marcia Longdon

Marcia is a solicitor and partner at Kingsley Napley LLP. She is interested in immigration, nationality and European law. She has a collaborative approach with the Home Office and is often asked to participate in roundtable discussions on immigration policy. She provides technical and compliance training on corporate immigration for HR professionals in various industries.

 Leena Savjani

Leena is a senior associate solicitor at national law firm Irwin Mitchell. She practices medical negligence law and is a renowned expert in that field. Leena also leads Irwin Mitchell’s internal diversity group ‘IM Respect’ in London, a listening group for BME staff members at her firm. The group promotes and champions diversity both internally and externally. Leena is passionate about law, diversity and inclusion and is the vice-chair of the Association of Asian Women Lawyers. She speaks regularly at educational events for law students and is keen to play a key part in improving diversity in the legal profession.

Michael Situ

Michael is a solicitor advocate at Lincolns Solicitors and heads the criminal law department. Michael has extensive experience in all areas of criminal law, regularly appearing in Magistrates and Crown Courts. He has expertise in representing young people and his unique approach helps achieve the best for his clients. Michael is a representative of the British Nigerian Law Forum on the Ethnic Minority Law Division of the Law Society. Outside of his legal work, he is a councillor for the London Borough of Southwark where he has helped drive changes to the use of stop and search powers locally.

Jerry Garvey

Jerry is part of the D&I team, which promotes and supports diversity and inclusion in the profession. With over 20 years' experience in the D&I field working in the legal sector, he brings to the role a strong insight into the issues and challenges, and what is needed to make the profession more diverse and inclusive. He is the Law Society lead in shaping its race diversity strategy. Having worked on projects supporting BAME candidates enter the profession, and currently with BAME practitioners, he is ideally placed to provide an expert's insight into the race agenda in the legal sector. The work covers understanding and supporting the needs of its BAME constituency. It also includes building engagement across the BAME legal community and managing the Ethnic Minority Lawyers Division (EMLD) committee, which acts as an interface between the Law Society and its BAME members. The EMLD plays a key role in delivering products and services that support BAME members.

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