Womble Bond Dickinson (WBD) has elected Paul Stewart to succeed Jonathan Blair as UK Managing Partner at the end of his current term in early 2022. Stewart also will serve as Co-Chair of Womble Bond Dickinson’s Global Board. Jonathan, who has been UK Managing Partner since 2008, chose not to stand for re-election and will be staying with the firm when he stands down on January 31, 2022. 

Paul, a partner and Head of the Commercial Disputes and Regulatory team, has been with the firm for 20 years. Paul is a highly regarded litigator, with particular experience working with clients in the rail and manufacturing sectors. He has also held the roles of Training Principal and Graduate Recruitment Partner for many years, as well as a number of non-executive roles outside the firm.

Betty Temple, US Chair & CEO comments, “Paul is well-respected as a leader and a litigation partner in our firm, and I look forward to working with him to help our firm continue to thrive. I’m also pleased that Jonathan will remain with the firm. Jonathan was vital both in the initial combination between our US and UK firms as well as in making Womble Bond Dickinson a thriving transatlantic law firm.”

Jonathan Blair, UK Managing Partner comments, "I am enormously proud of my WBD colleagues and all that we have achieved together over the past 13 years, not least the incredible response of all our people to the challenges of the pandemic. Our business is in great shape and I am confident that we have the right platform to continue to build, grow and prosper.  It has been an exciting and varied time to lead the firm, through a national merger and an international combination, and after more than a decade as Managing Partner, I am delighted to hand over to Paul at the end of my term." 

Paul Stewart comments, "It is a privilege to be elected as WBD UK's next Managing Partner. We have a fantastic client list, talented colleagues and a great opportunity to continue to grow.  I'm looking forward to working with the Board and with Nick Barwood, our UK Chair, as we continue to listen to our clients and develop our offering to meet and exceed their needs in the years ahead."

Jonathan and Paul will now work together on transition and Paul will take seat as the new UK Managing Partner on February 1, 2022, at the end of Jonathan's term.