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5 March 20243 minute read

DLA Piper appoints Lord Blunkett to its global Government Affairs team

DLA Piper continues to strengthen its global Government Affairs offering with the appointment of The Rt. Hon Professor the Lord Blunkett as Adviser on Public Policy and Internal Understanding of Government and Policy Development.

Lord (David) Blunkett has been a Member of the House of Lords since 2015, and previously served as MP for Sheffield Brightside and Hillsborough from 1987 to 2015. Blind since birth, and coming from one of Sheffield's most deprived districts, he rose to become Education and Employment Secretary, Home Secretary and Work and Pensions Secretary in Tony Blair's Cabinet following Labour's victory in the 1997 general election.

Lord Blunkett’s appointment reflects the firm’s desire to appoint and maintain senior advisers from across the political spectrum. He will provide public policy advice and a greater understanding of government and policy development to the firm’s clients as well as strategic advice to DLA Piper.

The appointment of Lord Blunkett illustrates the continued growth of DLA Piper’s Government Affairs team, recognising that its clients operate in rapidly changing regulatory environments that require strategic advice that goes beyond traditional legal services. The team offers not only a way for its clients to best address political and regulatory risk but also to seek out the opportunities that this change presents.

The team is led by Paul Hardy, a former senior legal counsel in the House of Commons and House of Lords.

Lord Blunkett will comply with the House of Lords Code of Conduct at all times in working with DLA Piper and will not undertake any consultant lobbying.

The UK practice is part of a global government affairs offering with other centres in Washington DC and Brussels, servicing clients from around the world. It is made up of lawyers and policy professionals, many of whom have held senior elected, appointed and staff positions in governments or gained public policy experience in the corporate world. Lord Blunkett, commenting on his appointment said: “I am pleased to be joining a law firm with the stature and global reach of DLA Piper. With a general election just around the corner I am looking forward to advising the firm and its clients on a wide variety of government policy and related issues. We are in a period of political change and the need for businesses to navigate the associated risks and opportunities has never been greater. I look forward to assisting in that endeavour.”

Simon Levine, DLA Piper’s Global co-CEO and Managing Partner, commented: “Lord Blunkett’s appointment is a clear demonstration of our commitment to the continued investment in our Government Affairs team and to the quality of strategic and political advice we offer our clients. Where the political and economic terrain is uncertain, we understand that our clients need a partner to help them assess their options. I look forward to Lord Blunkett joining us and the valuable contribution he will make to our clients and the firm as a whole.”