Phillips becomes university chancellor

LORD Phillips of Sudbury, one of the UK's leading lawyers, has been elected the new Chancellor of Essex University.He was unanimously approved following a special joint meeting of the university's council and senate, the governing bodies of the university.

By Sharon Asplin

LORD Phillips of Sudbury, one of the UK's leading lawyers, has been elected the new Chancellor of Essex University.

He was unanimously approved following a special joint meeting of the university's council and senate, the governing bodies of the university.

Lord Phillips, only the fourth chancellor in the university's history, takes over the role from Lord Nolan who is standing down after six years' service.


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The chancellor, whose role is largely ceremonial, is the chief officer of the university and presides over the annual meeting of the University Court and degree ceremonies.

After obtaining a degree in economics and law at Cambridge University, Lord Phillips embarked on a legal career spanning almost 40 years. He is a founding partner of London law firm Bates, Wells and Braithwaite and specialises primarily in charity law.

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He was made a life peer in June 1998 and took the title of Lord Phillips of Sudbury after the town where he grew up and now lives with his family.

Vice-chancellor Ivor Crewe said: "Lord Phillips has a long association with the university as a member of court. We are delighted to welcome him to the role of chancellor at a time when our position as one of the UK's leading research and teaching universities has been confirmed and the university continues to grow in new directions.

"Lord Phillips will be an invaluable chancellor."

Lord Phillips, an active Liberal Democrat peer in the Lords, was founder chairman of national charity The Legal Action Group and is currently president of the Citizen Foundation, an organisation he founded in 1988 to promote citizenship through education about the law, democracy and society.

A writer and broadcaster, for 26 years he gave legal advice as Legal Eagle on the Jimmy Young Show for Radio 2 and has presented television programmes for LWT and Anglian Television.

Lord Phillips is married with three children and lists walking, cricket, golf, history and the arts among his leisure pursuits.

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