Spotlight on…Donna McCarthy

What have you been up to recently?
Well, it has been a busy 6 months since our last update! Earlier in September 2021, I was appointed the new Head of the HMPL Team, taking over from Nick Billingham. I first joined Devonshires some 22 years ago, and I am eager to work on spearheading the future of the department and leading the team . Nick has built a fantastic 35+ strong team as head of department and it is an honour to take over from him ahead of his retirement and I am really looking forward to working with him in his new consultancy role at Devonshires.

All in all, I am looking forward to the next chapter of my career with Devonshires and helping to grow the team further.

Tell us about your career so far:
My first job was in house in a local authority and I studied via the CILEx route alongside my full time job and became a qualified member of the Institute when I was just 20 years old. Housing law was something I was passionate about, and I decided to do a further diploma in landlord and tenant law as I decided that was what I wanted to specialise in. I thought about how I could do something with more of a social agenda, so I moved into legal aid work representing vulnerable tenants and specialised in representing the most vulnerable. After 5 years acting for tenants I wanted to look at the bigger picture and thought about how one could make a difference working for the greater benefit. That’s when I decided to work for social landlords, and joined Devonshires in 1999.

A big focus of my career now is looking to work with and develop others. I have a particular passion for working with those who are under-represented in the law. I want to share my 30 years of experience and help inspire the next generation of lawyers as well as work with my clients and contacts for example through the IN Laws programme.

What do you enjoy most about working in Housing Management law?
I enjoy the sheer variety of the work! Housing law is always evolving and changing, and there is never a dull day! It’s exciting to be working in a sector that’s always fast-moving, and to also work and lead on matters that have such a big impact on our clients and those they serve.

For more information, please contact Donna McCarthy.

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