The Graduation Ceremony
At the DLA Piper Event
With David Moyes
Raised in Waterloo by her mother and grandmother, Cherie is "proud to be from Liverpool".
As Chancellor Emeritus of Liverpool John Moore's University, Cherie was delighted to attend the graduation ceremony celebrations again this year. This was a particularly special occasion as it is the last such occasion which Michael Brown will preside over as Vice Chancellor since he retires at the end of August.
Michael had a wonderful send off at a special dinner held in his honour ending with a surprise 'This is your Life' in which friends and family paid very moving tributes to him. The evening was brought to a very special conclusion when Brian May who succeeded Cherie as Chancellor of JMU, played and sang a Beatles song in Michael's honour, as well as the Queen song 'Days of our Lives'.
The next day Cherie was the guest speaker at a DLA Piper's Women's Network event.
She had been invited in her capacity as a leading human rights lawyer, and active campaigner for women's equality. Cherie spoke about how she balances her private life with a high-powered career, as well as life in the public eye.
Raised in Waterloo by her mother and grandmother, Cherie is "proud to be from Liverpool", and spoke of her route to becoming a QC, inspired by local Merseyside heroine Rose Hailbron who was one of the first two women to achieve Queen's Counsel in the UK. Cherie described her own struggle to overcome obstacles in the traditionally male-dominated legal profession, including the time she and Tony were rivals for at a Chambers before becoming husband and wife.
Since the time her husband was elected Prime Minister, Cherie has become involved in numerous charities including most recently the Africa Justice Foundation, which works alongside African Governments and the international business community to support and develop a robust justice system in various countries in Africa.
Cherie stated that: "Strengthening the legal systems in Africa will encourage growth and attract investment in the continent."
A longstanding champion of Women's Rights; two years ago Cherie established her own charity, the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women whose stated aim is to "create a world where women have equal access to the tools and support needed to establish and grow successful businesses." As Cherie says: "Economic security gives women a more influential voice in tackling injustice and discrimination in their own communities and in wider society. By supporting women entrepreneurs, we build a brighter future not just for the women themselves, but for their families and communities too."
Philip Rooney, Liverpool Office Managing Partner, stated: "We were delighted to welcome Cherie Blair to DLA Piper Liverpool. She is a remarkable individual who has juggled a successful career and a busy family life alongside being married to the Prime Minister. It's great to see that Cherie still has an incredibly close affinity to the city. She works hard to spread the message that respect for the individual and the rule of law everywhere in the world is important to all of us."
"An Audience with Cherie Blair", presented by Real Estate Solicitor Helen Kelly, formed part of a larger programme of events, mentoring and training offered as part of DLA Piper's Women's Network and was seen as a great success.
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