International law firm Womble Bond Dickinson (WBD) has been shortlisted for eight awards at the inaugural Legal 500 Northern Powerhouse Awards. WBD is nominated for three Firm of the Year awards including Dispute Resolution, ESG and Diversity and Inclusion, and five of the firm's lawyers have also been shortlisted as leaders in their field.

Launched to recognise the lawyers, law firms and in-house legal departments setting the pace in the North, North West, Yorkshire and the Humber, the Legal 500 Northern Powerhouse Awards celebrate the achievements of the legal profession over the last 18 months through in-depth independent research.

WBD is recognised for its Dispute Resolution practice, led by partner Richard Collins. Ranked as a top tier firm in the North East in this year's directory, the firm is described as a "go-to name for high-profile clients in the region" where the team "leverages the firm’s wider network to handle national and cross-border litigation".

Recognised for its commitment to the ESG agenda, WBD has always been ahead of the curve when it comes to its environmental, social and governance management, and for the first time this year, WBD introduced a Responsible Business framework which outlines the work we do at the firm with our Ethical Framework sitting front and centre. 

The firm is committed to achieving net zero emissions by 2030 and procures renewable energy in five of its seven UK offices, with nearly 50% of the energy used across the UK coming from renewable sources. As part of our work under the 'social' sphere, WBD launched a Disability Network and achieved the Silver Employer Award after rising 250 places in the Stonewall UK Workplace Equality Index, while in the governance landscape WBD launched the Work in Confidence anonymous communication system to support a safe and respectful working environment. These are just a few of the ESG initiatives the firm has undertaken in the last 12 months.

Our recent nomination at the Legal 500 Northern Powerhouse Awards follows WBD's recognition in The Legal 500 UK Green guide for leading the way on climate change, governance, and sustainability.

WBD's nomination in the Diversity and Inclusion category is based on the firmwide initiatives to foster a diverse and inclusive culture to attract and retain the very best people and for widening access to the legal profession through apprenticeships. With its deep-rooted #BeYourself campaign, WBD actively encourages its people to be their real selves, embracing individuality and differences to unlock potential.

In addition, five WBD lawyers are nominated for leading individual awards in recognition for their work advising clients on complex and high profile matters. The shortlisted individuals are:

Richard Collins, partner in WBD's Dispute Resolution team in Newcastle, commented: "It is very pleasing to have been recognised across so many categories in the inaugural Legal 500 Northern Powerhouse awards. These nominations reflect a very successful year for our firm, and demonstrate our commitment to the North East and Yorkshire regions as well as the fantastic businesses we work with.

"We're also really proud to see further recognition for our firm when it comes to driving the ESG and Diversity and Inclusion agendas and we will keep engaging with our people, clients and suppliers to build on the progress already made."

Legal 500 Northern Powerhouse Awards