Professor Sara Chandler QCX (Hon) is the first woman to be elected as President of the Federation of European Bar Associations.
Professor Sarah Chandler QCX (Hon) is a solicitor and Professor of Clinical Legal Education and works in the Legal Advice Clinic of the London South Bank University where she trains and supervises law students to give free legal advice and assistance to members of the public.
Her route to becoming a solicitor was after fighting for the human rights of political prisoners in Chile, and then working with the refugees who arrived from Chile after the military coup of General Pinochet in September 1973. She worked for 10 years as a Law Centre welfare rights caseworker and tribunal representative, and after studying law in evening classes, qualified as a solicitor in 1995 at the age of 49, and mother of two children. With a strong commitment to human rights, equality and the representation of others, she was elected President of South London Law Society in 2002 and President of the Westminster & Holborn Law Society in 2006. She was elected to represent voluntary sector solicitors on the Council of the Law Society of England & Wales in 2002, and chaired the Law Society’s Human Rights Committee (2011-2014) and the Housing Law Committee (2006-2010.
In 2018 she was elected Chair of the Law Society’s Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Committee. She was invited to participate in the Federation of European Bar Associations (www.fbe.org) in 2006, and became President of the Human Rights Commission in 2008. The Federation was an organisation with all male platforms in congresses, and all the representatives were men. Then in 2015 she was elected as the first women ever to the Presidency of the FBE as the 2nd Vice President. She became President in 2017, the year that the FBE celebrated 25 years as a Federation. It was a significant first, and following that, the Presidency has two female lawyers who will be Presidents in 2019, and 2020. Female lawyers in European bar associations and local law societies will always be valued for the positive contribution that they make to the leadership of the international legal community.
In 2016, Sara was honoured for her work in pro bono, human rights and pioneering clinical legal education, with then title of Honorary Queen’s Counsel.