Shami Chakrabarti CBE, former director of Liberty, is to re-join 39 Essex Chambers, it has been announced today. Shami completed her pupillage at 39 Essex Chambers and returns to the set as a door tenant.
Following the completion of her pupillage in 1994 Shami moved to work as a lawyer for the Home Office. She joined Liberty in 2001 as its in-house lawyer and, in 2003, became its director. Shami announced that she was stepping down from the role in January of this year.
Shami is Chancellor of the University of Essex and an Honorary Professor of Law at Manchester University. Shami was one of six Assessors who assisted with the Leveson Inquiry into the culture, practice and ethics of the press. She received a CBE in 2007.
David Barnes, Chief Executive and Director of Clerking at 39 Essex Chambers, says “We are absolutely delighted that Shami is to re-join us. She is one of the leading voices on human rights and civil liberties and has gained immeasurable experience during her time at firstly the Home Office and consequently as Director of Liberty. This is an area of law in which we have a long-established practice and she will be an invaluable addition to the group. Having started her career here, it is fitting that Shami has decided to return to Chambers”.
Alison Foster QC, Joint Head of Chambers at 39 Essex Chambers, adds “I am really pleased that Shami has decided to return to the fold at 39 Essex Chambers. She is a leading thinker on the Human Rights scene and we are very excited that she continues her distinguished career with us. She has been a personal friend since her pupillage and all of us look forward immensely to welcoming her into Chambers again”.
Shami Chakrabarti says “It is a pleasure and privilege to return to where I learned my law and began my career. Lawyers face unfair attacks but a chambers that produces advocates on both sides of vital disputes and so many senior judges well represents the Rule of Law.”
Shami joins 39 Essex Chambers with immediate effect.