Two senior associates make partner at Russell McVeagh

One of the new partners is a homegrown star

Two senior associates make partner at Russell McVeagh
From left to right: Simon Pilkinton, Caleb Hensman, Michael Taylor, Catherine Shirley-Brown, Kirsten Massey

Russell McVeagh has promoted two senior associates to partner, including a homegrown talent.

Simon Pilkinton first joined the firm a decade ago as a summer clerk, and carried on working with the firm as a graduate. He became a senior solicitor in 2014.

Following a year of travel, he resumed working with Russell McVeagh in 2016, and was promoted to senior associate a year later. Currently, he works with the firm’s environment, planning and natural resources team.

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Pilkinton specialises in all aspects of resource management and environmental law, focusing on matters involving the Public Works Act and freshwater reform. His clients include major infrastructure providers and urban developers.

The Legal 500 has recognised Pilkinton as a Rising Star in the Projects and Resources Management including Environment category.

“Simon is a key voice in our team that is contributing its expertise to help shape the thinking around the challenges New Zealand faces with resource use and protection (as seen in our RMA Reform Series),” said Malcolm Crotty, Russell McVeagh board chair. “With RMA reform offering big opportunities for enabling a step change in planning for growth and infrastructure delivery, this is an area where our firm is positioned to play an integral role.”

Meanwhile, Michael Taylor works in the commercial litigation space, specialising in infrastructure, construction and information technology law. He has handled high-value disputes on behalf of leading developers, lenders and contractors.

He has significant overseas experience, having practised at the London Commercial Bar for 16 years. He worked with a top construction and IT set before making the jump to Russell McVeagh in 2016.

Taylor has been recognised as a leading junior counsel by The Legal 500 UK and Chambers & Partners UK.

“Michael is a highly regarded leader in New Zealand's construction disputes market, and his thought leadership into the causes of construction disputes in New Zealand and how they can be avoided is highlighted in the firm's recently released Construction Disputes insights report,” Crotty said.

Pilkinton and Taylor joined the partnership table on Tuesday, capping off Russell McVeagh’s partnership appointments for 2020. The other partners who were appointed this year include Kirsten Massey, Caleb Hensman and Catherine Shirley-Brown.

“With formidable reputations, these lawyers are sought after as talent that clients want to work with. They are collaborative across our teams, while each brings a focus that enhances our ability to deliver for clients, and particularly, in our growing infrastructure practice,” Crotty said.

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