Twenty-three barristers called to the Inner Bar today

Twenty-three barristers called to the Inner Bar today

The Bar of Ireland has congratulated 23 barristers – 18 men and five women – who have been called to the Inner Bar today.

The new senior counsels are Ruth A. Fitzgerald SC, Elizabeth Maguire SC, Brian McInerney SC, Andrew Walker SC, James McGowan SC, Tom Flynn SC, Ray Boland SC, Philipp Rahn SC, Cathy Smith SC, Dermot Cahill SC, Ted Harding SC, Conor Bourke SC, Oisin Collins SC, Aillil O’Reilly SC, John Byrne SC, William Abrahamson SC, Tom O’Malley SC, Suzanne Murray SC, Fintan Valentine SC, Robert Fitzpatrick SC, Yvonne McNamara SC, Ronan Lupton SC and Carsten Zatschler SC.

They took silk in the Supreme Court today at one of Chief Justice Frank Clarke’s final official ceremonies before retirement and the first in-person event hosted by The Bar of Ireland since 2019.

Maura McNally SC, chair of the Bar Council, said: “The call to the Inner Bar is a recognition of the advancement and achievement by my 23 colleagues of professional skills across a wide range of legal specialism. Their achievement today reinforces the role and contribution of barristers to the social and economic fabric of the State.

““Their skills in advocacy, and their experience and deep knowledge and understanding of the law, and of dispute resolution, represent valuable and unique qualities possessed by barristers, and used for the benefit of clients and society in general.

“This, read in conjunction with a culture of continuous professional development, drawing from both national, European and international sources and experiences, are all positive indicators for the rule of law and access to justice.”

She added: “This is also an additionally historic occasion for my female colleagues taking silk today, especially in this centenary year of the call to the Bar of the first female barristers in 1921. The focus on female participation in law and the professions continues.

“While almost 40 per cent of all barristers are female, only some 17 per cent of senior counsel are female. The reasons for this discrepancy are myriad, and we are continuing to put in place initiatives to address and close this gender gap. More positive steps are, in my opinion, not only required, but required urgently.”

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