Meet Scott Bowen, new Law Society Council Member for West Country & Gwent

What made you want to serve on The Law Society Council?

 

I am a Criminal Law defence Solicitor Advocate and from early in my career I took exception to the way respective Governments undervalued our Justice system and used it as an easy target to reduce the budget afforded to it.

 

I initially became involved in local action including a sit in at our local Magistrates Court. I thereafter attended the infamous vote of no confidence at The Law Society. My Council Member at that time quite properly said that I would achieve nothing by shouting from the side lines and if I wished to make a difference I would have to get on the pitch and get involved.

 

I have since 2015 become involved in The Law Society specialist committees and it was a natural progression to then apply for a Council seat when the current Member term came to an end.

 

I believe apathy is one of the greatest threats to our profession. I appreciate that we are all very busy in our day jobs, but unless we stand up for the profession as a whole we will continue to see our reputation and standards reduced. 

 

What are the key concerns you have at the moment for the legal profession in the South West?

 

I think the brand “Solicitor” is something we should be proud of. We are professionals and have clients not customers. We no longer share the prestige that other professions receive and that is something we should be fighting for.

 

I believe we are facing a dumbing down of the profession with the introduction of the Solicitors Qualifying Exam. We have unregulated sectors introducing legal services as well. We have also had the SRA reduce the burden of proof that applies to the SDT and it will be interesting to see how matters are dealt with as more regulations apply to our practices.

 

Austerity is also affecting the profession with budget cuts biting hard across the board.   

 

What has been the most embarrassing moment during your professional career?

 

Appearing before a High Court Judge in jeans and flip flops as an improvised advocate. When I stepped into the front bench of the Inner London Crown Court a QC who was present pointed me towards the dock!

 

Which sort of work gives you the most job satisfaction?

 

I enjoy advocacy and still get butterflies at the start of a trial. I think nerves are a good thing and show that you still have a passion. I believe that most of the best advocates are passionate about what they do. The trick is not to let your passion overrule your sense of professionalism.

 

What do you do in your spare time?

 

My wife and two daughters are my focus in my spare time. In amongst various activities involving them I do enjoy playing golf and reluctantly using the gym to stave off the advances of middle age.

 

Where is your favourite holiday destination?

 

Anna Maria Island. It’s on the Gulf Coast of Florida. My wife and I enjoy it so much we got married on the beach there in 2006.

 

What is your dream job?

 

My Haemophilia meant I would never grace the pitch at Anfield so gave up on that pretty early on.

 

However, I always had an infinity with the sea and still do. I was a pretty good swimmer as a youngster and dabbled as a surfer for few years. In fact, my University shortlist was ranked on beaches rather than academic prowess.

 

I love being on and in the sea and wanted to be a marine biologist. However I was never much good at science in school so had to look elsewhere in terms of a career.

 

 

Visit The Law Society website for details of all the Council Constituencies

https://www.lawsociety.org.uk/about-us/our-council/council-constituencies/

 

 

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