Alissa Bell appointed as Chair of McVeagh Fleming, as John Woolley steps down

McVeagh Fleming bids farewell to John Woolley who steps down as Chair of the Board after an exceptional tenure spanning nearly five decades. Alissa Bell, who joined McVeagh Fleming in 2011, has been appointed as the new Chair. She is a distinguished legal professional with a passion for the law and says she embraces the opportunity to build on John’s legacy while delivering her vision for the future of the firm.

“McVeagh Fleming has experienced strong growth over the past five years, resulting in the establishment of a new office in Manukau, alongside our Auckland City and North Harbour locations. Our vision is to employ 160 professionals across various fields by 2027 as part of our commitment to provide our clients with a comprehensive full-service approach,” says Alissa.

“We pride ourselves on fostering a culture of excellence and inclusivity within our teams. We deliberately nurture talent within the firm by giving our legal professionals sufficient autonomy to work on client files while being guided by seniors who enjoy mentoring and seeing young professionals grow and prosper.

“Our strong emphasis on fostering client relationships will always be at the centre of everything we do. We enjoy and value getting to know our clients and building enduring and successful relationships, often over many years. Some of our clients are from families we have served for many decades.”

McVeagh Fleming is deeply committed to providing access to high-quality legal services for all, particularly in the face of New Zealand’s current cost of living crisis. The firm, which has served Kiwis for more than 100 years, believes that everyone has the right to high-quality legal advice regardless of their financial circumstances.

“Volunteering and giving back has always been something that I have been drawn to and it’s a calling we encourage our people to embrace, such as providing pro bono services or legal aid services to those who cannot afford legal representation, and hosting free seminars and webinars. This is especially important during times of financial strain as having access to legal advice before making decisions that could have far reaching implications for individuals or businesses is critical.”

In addition to her professional achievements, Alissa actively volunteers and serves on the committees for ADLSi and Family Court Association.  She holds the position of President of the Zonta Club of Auckland, demonstrating her commitment to empowering women and driving positive change in the community.

Alissa is an avid traveller, continuously seeking new destinations both within New Zealand and abroad and achieved a goal of visiting every continent before the age of forty. She now aims to complete a half-marathon on every continent.

John Woolley, who remains part of the McVeagh Fleming family in a consulting capacity, says, “Alissa’s appointment signifies a new chapter for McVeagh Fleming, blending a legacy of excellence with a fresh perspective. Her appointment underscores the firm's commitment to nurturing talent, and with the backing of our experienced team she will strengthen our unwavering commitment to our clients and communities and McVeagh Fleming’s progressive approach to legal services.”