Patrons

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Helen Grant, MP

Born in London, Helen was brought up on the Raffles council estate in Carlisle for much of her early childhood. At school she showed diverse sporting talent representing her County in Hockey, Tennis, Athletics and Cross-Country and also became under-16 Judo Champion in North of England and Southern Scotland. Helen gained a Law degree at the University of Hull and qualified as a solicitor in 1988. In 1996 she set up Grants Solicitors, focused on the problems of family breakdown. Perhaps uniquely Helen created a network of free weekly Domestic Violence legal advice clinics across South London, Surrey and West Kent, and her firm has assisted around 15,000 clients over the years. She became the MP for Maidstone and the Weald in May 2010. Helen served on the Justice Select Committee until 2011 and was appointed to the Conservative social justice policy group in 2006. She joined Iain Duncan Smith’s think tank the Centre for Social Justice, for which she has written extensively on family policy. In 2012 she was appointed as joint Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Justice and Women & Equalities. In 2013 she was appointed the Minister for Sport, Tourism and Equalities. Helen is married with two sons.

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The Rt. Hon. Baroness Scotland of Asthal QC

Baroness Scotland is the former Shadow Attorney General and former Attorney General of England and Wales. Baroness Scotland has achieved a number of extraordinary firsts: In 1991 at the age of thirty five, she became the first black and youngest woman ever to be appointed Queen’s Counsel. She was the first black woman to be appointed Deputy High Court Judge, Recorder, Master of Middle Temple, Member of the House of Lords, and Lord’s Minister, and is the first and only woman ever to have been appointed as Attorney General. I n 2001 she became Parliamentary Secretary and Deputy to the Lord Chancellor and was made a member of the Privy Council of the United Kingdom. In 2003 Baroness Scotland was made Minister of State for Criminal Justice and Law Reform at the Home Office and in 2007 she was appointed as HM Attorney General for England Wales and Northern Ireland.Baroness Scotland undertook major reform of the criminal justice system, including the introduction of the Domestic Violence, Crime and Victims Act, and during her term of office from 2003-7 crime in England and Wales was reduced to its lowest level since 1981. During this period Baroness Scotland chaired the Inter-Ministerial Group on Domestic Violence which collectively worked together to reduce domestic violence by 64% and led to £7.5bn reduction in the economic cost of domestic violence in England and Wales. She has won many awards in recognition of her achievements including being voted Peer of the Year, Parliamentarian of the Year and receiving a lifetime achievement award from Euromoney Legal Media Group. In 2008, The Guardian named Baroness Scotland the most powerful female black Briton. Baroness Scotland is the founding patron of the Corporate Alliance Against Domestic Violence, and in 2011, she founded the Eliminate Domestic Violence Global Foundation. In November 2012, she was appointed Prime Ministerial Trade Envoy to South Africa.

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Dame Fiona Woolf CBE , Alderman Of The City Of London, Partner CMS

Fiona is a leading energy lawyer who has made a major contribution to electricity reforms, power and transmission projects. Fiona has worked in over 40 jurisdictions, advised over 25 governments on reform, strategy and privatization, and been a strategic adviser to the World Bank, governments and corporations for 20 years. Fiona was awarded a CBE by the British Government for her contribution to the UK knowledge economy and invisible earnings. She is a former Member and Director of the UK Competition Commission, a non-executive director of Veolia Water Central plc., past Chair of Main Board and President of the Law Society, and an Alderman in the City of London (Sheriff 2010/11). Fiona is a member of the Government’s Women’s Business Council, and in 2011 was awarded a TIAW World of Difference 100 Award by The International Alliance for Women (achievers for economic empowerment and advancement of women locally, regionally or worldwide).