Home Appointments & Contracts Clarion announces eight promotions

Clarion announces eight promotions

Picture shows: (top row L to R) Charlie Smith; Sarah Harrison; Estelle Brown; Alex Cooper; (bottom row L to R) Kayleigh Fantoni; Andrea Unwin; Grace Allison; Stephanie Jameson

Clarion is continuing to recognise and reward talent within its ranks with a further eight lawyers at the Leeds law firm receiving promotions.

Alex Cooper, Andrea Unwin, Charlie Smith, Estelle Oates, Kayleigh Fantoni and Sarah Harrison have all been promoted from senior associates to legal directors; and Grace Allison and Stephanie Jameson become senior associates.

Roger Hutton, joint managing partner at Clarion, commented: “Given the turmoil of the last year, our supportive Clarion culture has been more important than ever as the team has adjusted to the challenges of remote working. During what has been an extremely busy 12 months for us, we are proud that the team has pulled together to provide a seamless service for our clients and it’s particularly pleasing to see so many of our lawyers rising through the ranks and progressing their careers with Clarion.

“Our congratulations to the hard working and talented people recognised in this year’s round of promotions – your success is well deserved.”


With 15 years’ experience, Alex Cooper is a valued member of Clarion’s corporate team who has led on high profile and complex matters and has developed a specialism in joint ventures, working closely with the banking and real estate teams.

Andrea Unwin joined the banking and finance team in 2019, bringing strong technical and organisational skills as well as high standards of client care. She has been the lead lawyer on a number of complex instructions, acting for key lender clients and borrowers, and has been recognised in the Legal 500 as a ‘key lawyer’. Andrea specialises in leveraged finance and provides corporate and real estate finance support on transactions.

Over the last two years with Clarion, Charlie Smith has led on a number of highly technical and complex matters, with a focus on outsourcing projects. She also shares her knowledge and experience by supervising juniors and delivering client training and external seminars.

Estelle Oates is one of Clarion’s home-grown talents, having trained with the firm. She has established a pivotal role in the business restructuring and insolvency team, managing, mentoring and supervising junior colleagues both within her own team and in the wider firm. Estelle is a technically solid lawyer and has been involved in a number of complex insolvencies and successful antecedent transaction claims. With a solid client base, she regularly wins work for the team.

Kayleigh Fantoni has added her leadership abilities to the commercial dispute resolution (CDR) team, managing junior members and mentoring others. She plays an active role in the wider business as well as having a loyal client following. Kayleigh’s talents have been recognised as a Rising Star for Commercial Litigation in the Legal 500 every year since 2017.

Having completed her training with Clarion in 2014, Sarah Harrison has gone on to become a well-regarded technical lawyer, taking the lead in some major client deals for the corporate practice. She has significant experience in transactions in the media sector as well as expertise advising clients on investments, group restructures, Enterprise Management Incentive schemes and family investment companies.

Real estate lawyer Grace Allison has been promoted to senior associate in recognition of her strong technical skills, running transactions with minimum supervision and her passion for providing excellent client service. She has developed a specialism in supporting clients in the fitness and leisure sectors as well as acting for a number of key regional developers.

Since joining our CDR practice in 2019, Stephanie Jameson has quickly become a key member of the Clarion team, providing exceptional client service and commercially focused advice. Stephanie’s promotion to senior associate recognises her invaluable contributions to the firm.

Last year, Clarion achieved a three-star accreditation as one of the 2020 ‘Best Companies to Work For’ in recognition of the “outstanding levels of engagement” of its 270-strong workforce. It was also ranked No. 8 in the prestigious Sunday Times list, making it the highest ranked law firm in the UK and the highest ranking of any company in Yorkshire.

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