The Committee supports the development of the future strategy of the Section and enhancement of the services already offered to members. Committee members and their brief biographies are below.
Stuart Adams is an associate at Mishcon de Reya. He specialises in UK and international tax planning, in addition to general private client matters. He advises individuals, entrepreneurs, families and corporate entities, as well as the family offices, trust companies and other institutions supporting them.
Helen Clarke is a solicitor and represents the Private Client Section on the Law Society Council. She lectures regularly to solicitors on topics including wills, probate and elderly clients.
Melinda Giles is a partner at Giles Wilson LLP, a small high street firm with two Essex offices. She has worked in property and private client since 1987, has represented clients at mental health tribunals, has been a Court of Protection panel deputy for over 10 years, and is on the Mencap list of specialist solicitors providing wills and trust advice to parents of children with learning disabilities.
Fiona Heald is an experienced solicitor working at Moore Blatch in the South. She now specialises in dealing with older clients and their issues, especially with regards to mental incapacity, applications relating to property and financial affairs at the Court of Protection, care fees planning and funding.
Simon Leney was admitted as a solicitor in 1977 and has worked in private practice since that time. He has specialised in private client work since 1980, and was the first chairman of the Sussex branch of STEP.
Kate Mahon is a solicitor and sole practitioner at Davidson Mahon Solicitors in Rugby, Warwickshire. Kate deals with all aspects of private client work, but has particular expertise in advising farming families and business owners with regard to their estate planning. Kate also gives seminars on making applications to the Court of Protection.
Gareth Marland (vice chair ) is a solicitor at Berwins Solicitors Limited. Prior to retraining as a solicitor, Gareth was a manufacturing engineer. He is particularly interested in elderly client issues and agricultural clients. He is a member of STEP and Solicitors for the Elderly.
Sarah Murphy is a senior solicitor with JWK Solicitors in Lancashire. Sarah has always dealt with private client work and advises clients on a daily basis on matters including estate administration and probate, estate planning, wills, trusts, taxation, powers of attorney and Court of Protection matters. Sarah has particular expertise in advising elderly and vulnerable clients and is a full professional member of Solicitors for the Elderly.
Alberto Perez Cedillo set up his own firm five years ago in Lincolns Inn, London, after practising as a dually qualified Spanish lawyer and English solicitor in London-based English firms for 20 years. He is the president of the British Spanish Law Association and council member of the International Bar Association.
John Perry is a partner at Palmers Solicitors in Kingston-upon-Thames, Surrey. He is a member of the Law Society Council and sits on the Private Client Section committee as an observer for the wills and equity committee.
Charlotte Pisuto is an associate at Hugh Jones Solicitors and a full member of STEP. She specialises in wills and estate planning for clients looking to provide for vulnerable family members as well as the administration of trusts and estates.
Anthony Rickards Collinson is a senior director of JWK solicitors in Lancaster. He was admitted in 1973 and has worked in private practice since then, and now specialises in private client work, advising high net-worth clients, particularly with business or landed interests, or who are active underwriting members of Lloyds.
Gary Rycroft (chair ) qualified as a solicitor in 1998. He is a partner at Joseph A Jones & Co, a three-partner firm in Lancaster dealing exclusively with private client and property matters. He also sits on the Law Society’s wills and equity committee. He has been vice-chair of the Private Client Section executive committee since September 2011.
Helen Starkie is a former partner and head of wealth management at Moore Blatch, now practising as a sole practitioner in Bath, Somerset.