New Year Honours: Surprise for legal chief Claire

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A MANAGER from the Legal Aid Agency (LAA) in South Tyneside has been named in the New Year Honours list.

Claire Emmerson leads the processing teams who deal with legal aid applications for civil cases at the LAA’s Jarrow office, where she is operations site manager.

The 54-year-old, who is married with three children, has been with the organisation, in its various forms, for 38 years.

She has been awarded the British Empire Medal for voluntary and charitable services.

Ms Emmerson, from Cullercoats, North Tyneside, who was nominated by the Legal Aid Agency, said: “I was very, very surprised.

“I am just at the front end, there are a huge number of staff who have worked with me over a number of years to make what I lead on happen.

“Everything I have done has only been possible with the support and contribution of my fantastic colleagues and family.”

Ms Emmerson has worked with charities to provide work placements for disadvantaged people and has been involved in the LAA mentoring scheme, working with children from schools in deprived areas.

Her nomination also highlighted how her commitment to the LAA has meant she sacrificed her own time to support initiatives and staff.

It said: “Her work has significantly enhanced the reputation of the LAA both in South Tyneside and nationally. Her selfless behaviour and willingness to take on challenges has made a real difference.”

Ms Emmerson has been a school governor and was chairwoman of governors for St Vincent’s RC Primary School in Walker, Newcastle, for a number of years.




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