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A Conversation with ....Iain Smith

“It’s been well over 30 years since I started University in Edinburgh. Tonight, I am nervous to go back, in many ways but also chuffed that I get this opportunity to speak to the next generation of lawyers. I’ll put some extra letters after my name … #POT #BAM I smile when I read this recent tweet from Iain. It’s typical, unfiltered, unpretentious Iain. These are the characteristics which make him not only an award-winning lawyer but a champion of adversity and justice.

For Iain’s not your typical pale, stale, male lawyer destined to rise up the ranks in the Scottish legal establishment. Iain’s a down to earth, unassuming, everyday type of a guy. He didn’t go to a private school. He didn’t come from a family of solicitors. And he didn’t become a solicitor to earn lots of money. So why did Iain decide to study law?

“My dad was a policeman and I enjoyed watching crime dramas unfold, so I always wanted to be a criminal lawyer. In fourth year at school, following a conversation with my careers advisor where I explained I would like to go into law, it was suggested at best I could be a paralegal as I would never be able to be a lawyer. I decided to prove my career advisor wrong.” So much of what Iain shares resonates with me. Like me Iain went to a school in a socio-economically disadvantaged area, where the emphasis was getting youngsters into work as opposed to university.

But studying didn’t come easy to Iain and it was many years later he found out