After celebrating fifty years of business as a law firm in 2022, BOYNECLARKE LLP of Dartmouth is moving into our fifty-first year and turning a new leaf with a change in CEO & Managing Partner.
Lauren M. Randall, incoming CEO & Managing Partner, brings a lot to the table.
Randall is the first woman to lead the firm, and she acknowledges that this is important step forward for BOYNECLARKE.
“When I was a mid-level Associate and I looked above me, it was mostly men,” Randall explains. “If you look at law school admissions now, at least locally, the students are more than fifty percent women. While the upper echelons of many law firms are still male dominated, that’s not the demographic coming up. I think it is good to have a woman in a [leadership] position who sees what [women] see, knows what they go through, and can help change things so that leadership overall isn’t so dominated by male colleagues any longer.”
Randall is also a legacy lawyer at BOYNECLARKE. Her father, Cyril Randall, built his career with the firm and was Managing Partner in the late 1980’s.
“My Dad’s mentorship played a huge part in me finding my way in my career. Everything that he did, I wanted to do,” she explains with a smile. “I was three months old when my Dad joined BOYNECLARKE, so the firm has quite literally been a part of my entire life. I know people always say their business is like family, but BOYNECLARKE is a part of who I am.”
And how does her father feel about her taking on this new role?
“He was very excited. One of the things that he said was how proud he is that all of the partners respect me enough to put me in this position, because that’s huge for someone who hasn’t been at is as long as most of the other people at the table.”
Randall launched her career obtaining her undergrad at Mount Allison University, before studying law at the University of New Brunswick. In a natural step forward, she joined her father at BOYNECLARKE to complete her articling. She remained there as she built a successful practice in Real Estate Law and Wills, Trusts and Incapacity Planning, becoming a Partner in 2019 and joining the Executive Committee in 2022.
Randall is a member of the Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society and the Canadian Condominium Institute. She is an active volunteer through various organizations in the local community and particularly enjoys coaching her young daughter’s fastball team and encouraging other young girls to foster their love of sport.
Stepping down from leadership
For the past twelve years, James D. MacNeil has been at the helm of BOYNECLARKE, overseeing day-to-day processes, heading the Executive Committee, and leading by example as he also manages a busy Business Litigation practice.
“I’m moving forward to focus on my practice,” MacNeil says. “The whole focus will be on construction law and commercial litigation – serving clients, and welcoming new clients.”
Of course, he did not simply walk into the flourishing career that he has today. MacNeil began his professional journey completing his undergrad at Saint Mary’s University, before attending Law School at the University of New Brunswick. He then made the move to BOYNECLARKE as an articling clerk, making himself at home where he has remained since.
MacNeil is a Member of the Canadian Bar Association, Law Societies of Newfoundland and Labrador and New Brunswick, the Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society, and is a Fellow with each of the Construction Lawyers Society of America and the Canadian College of Construction Lawyers.
Furthermore, MacNeil is a board member at the Construction Association of Nova Scotia. He has been included in The Best Lawyers in Canada for Construction Law annually since 2016, as well as for Corporate and Commercial Litigation.
Of his time as CEO & Managing Partner, MacNeil says he is most proud of “the continued, natural growth of our firm. We’ve helped people to grow their careers, and in turn revenue has grown and we operate a very successful business.”
Honoring the past
MacNeil joins the ranks of past BOYNECLARKE Managing Partners including Tom O. Boyne, QC, Cyril Randall, Larry Graham, the late James L. Connors, QC, Jeffery H. Morris, Gregory R. Baker, QC, and the late John A. Young, QC.
BOYNECLARKE has a proud and storied history in Dartmouth since the firm’s inception on February 14, 1972. The firm saw a humble beginning as Boyne, Crocker & Jones, above a tailor shop on Queen Street, with four employees and leased furniture. In 1981 a merger and new partnership gave the firm the name it holds today.
Today, we are a full-service law firm employing more than fifty lawyers who practice in all areas of law. BOYNECLARKE employs upwards of 190 individuals from the local community, working together to provide the best service to our wide range of valued clients.
With many changes over five decades and still proudly operating out of Dartmouth, we attribute our success to our community focus and client relationships.
Randall officially commences her duties as CEO & Managing Partner on January 1, 2023.
Her outlook is both eager, and very positive.
“I’m excited to see what I can do to help move BOYNECLARKE into the future.”