A CEDR Celebration: Eileen Carroll QC (Hon)

On Tuesday 30th April, Dr Karl Mackie CBE and CEDR Chambers hosted 200 guests to celebrate the award of Queens’ Counsel Honoris Causa to Deputy Chief Executive and mediator Eileen Carroll.

QC (Hon) is the highest distinction awarded to those who have made a major contribution to law in England and Wales outside of the courts. Eileen was recognised for an exceptional career as a commercial mediator, for pioneering the development of mediation in the UK and internationally, and for founding CEDR.

After a warm introduction by CEDR Chair, Lady Elizabeth Vallance, Dr Karl Mackie CBE raised a glass to toast Eileen’s perseverance in the promotion of mediation. He also acknowledged her prowess as a robust yet empathetic mediator, and her ability to ‘lean in’, not only for the ADR profession, but for women in business too.

Eileen’s response rightly acknowledged the variety of individuals to have supported her career: from personal friends and family, to former employers, to her generous award sponsors. She enforced the importance of mediators, lawyers and judiciary working together as cogs in a united legal system, and concluded that we should all ‘lean in’ together for the sake of our clients.

Plaisterers’ Hall, whose neo-classical décor juxtaposes the grandeur of a bygone era with an ultra-modern setting, was a truly fitting venue for a celebration of this type: while the accolade ‘QC’ was first awarded in the late 16th century, it was not until Eileen’s appointment in 2013 that such an award was made specifically for services to mediation. As the last guests left, the significance of such an award for the growing future of ADR provided a final thought that would last well beyond the journey home.

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