The Value of Legal Translation Professionals

Words to Deeds Conference 2018



The list of speaker bios below is in alphabetical order of surname, and includes those running workshops on the Friday preceding the conference.

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Elena Alcalde Peñalver

Elena Alcalde Peñalver is an Assistant Professor at the University of Alcalá, and holds a PhD in Translation from the University of Granada. She graduated from the Faculty of Translation and Interpreting at the University of Granada in 2010 with the language combination English-French-Spanish. As part of her training she was also awarded a BA in Applied/Modern Languages (First Class Honors) from Northumbria University at Newcastle, United Kingdom and a Maîtrise en Langues Étrangères (Mention Très Bien) from the Université de Provence, Aix-Marseille I, France.

She has worked as a freelance translator and interpreter since 2010, and has teaching and research experience at national and international level in the fields of legal and financial translation.

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Joanne Alexander

Jo Alexander, founder and owner of Creative Clique, has gone from being a one-man(lady)-band designer based in her bedroom to running an award-winning full service design, web and marketing services business with specialist staff. Creative Clique has just celebrated 10 years in business, and the studio is now based above the prestigious Aspex Gallery on the south coast of the UK.

Jo is a highly talented designer and marketing specialist who always thinks 'out of the box', and has helped a whole host of small and larger businesses with their branding and promotional needs, websites and integrated campaigns.

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Mark Baulch

Mark Baulch is Head of Policy & Representation at Hampshire Chamber of Commerce, UK. Previously, Mark worked with businesses across South-East England, putting them in touch with accredited business networks abroad for practical support, to assess target markets and obtain advice on the best opportunities for exporting products & services. Exporters also have access to accredited services such as hot desking, PR and low-cost advice from experts on the ground, and business centres intended to act as practical, vibrant spaces in which to get started in each market.

Mark spent 9 years working for an information services company, not only in sales but with implementing various IT systems and exploring ways of integrating different systems. He also had considerable input into their e-book platform and online database. From 2011, his territory included Ireland, Europe, Scandinavia and Russia and this was extended to the Middle East in 2013. In 2012 he presented to the National Library Conference in Russia and this resulted in the publication of his paper in a National journal.

Earlier in his career, Mark was in retail and events management and so is highly experienced in customer care and has a solution-focussed background. He is from an Italian family, and has internationalism and multilingualism in his DNA!

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Sahar Bhaimia

Sahar Bhaimia trained as a lawyer and practised in the consumer, IT and commercial sectors at Simmons & Simmons LLP, a leading international law firm, until 2007.

After completing her Masters, she worked as an editor at Practical Law (a legal know-how provider) until 2014, analysing and writing on legislative developments and case law in consumer and commercial law (UK and EU).

Sahar now provides consultancy, legal support and knowledge management services for law firms, with a particular focus on supporting litigators in the retail finance sector.

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Gwen Clayton

Gwen Clayton, MA, read Oriental Studies (Japanese) at St Catherine's College, Oxford and then studied law at the College of Law, London.

She trained as a solicitor with a City law firm, qualifying into their Tokyo Office in 2001, and worked as a commercial solicitor for 10 years in Tokyo, Bristol and Zurich.  

She has been a freelance translator since 2007, working from Japanese and German into English. She is a member of the Professional Conduct Committee of the Institute of Translation and Interpreting (ITI) and a Continuing Professional Development Officer for its Japanese Network.

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John Anthony Coleman, Agent-General, Québec Government Office in London

John Coleman has been Québec’s Agent General in London since October 2017. He received his B.A. from McGill University and attended the University of Oxford (Rhodes Scholarship, Québec and St. John’s 1975), graduating with a degree in English law. He went on to complete the National Law Programme at McGill University’s Faculty of Law.

Mr. Coleman spent most of his legal career at the law firm of Ogilvy Renault (now Norton Rose Fulbright), practising employment and labour law. During his six-year tenure as National Managing Partner, he led the firm’s historic transition in 2011 into the Norton Rose Group, one of the top ten global law firms, and its merger in 2012 with the Calgary-based firm of MacLeod Dixon. From 2010 to 2014, he also served as a member of the global firm’s Executive Committee and actively participated in the negotiations that led to the merger with the leading U.S. firm of Fulbright & Jaworski in 2013.

In 2011, he was named one of the top 25 Most Influential Lawyers in Canada by Canadian Lawyer magazine.


Fernando Cuñado

Fernando Cuñado is a law graduate and MBA with twenty-five years' experience in the corporate world. He has been working as a freelance translator since 2008, and his areas of expertise are contracts and corporate documents. He is a great connoisseur of the British and American legal systems and regularly publishes articles on comparative law in Spanish legal journals.
Fernando's legal translation practice, run jointly with Ruth Gámez, provides services for direct clients: Spanish law firms; law departments of multinational corporations; and global organizations such as the OECD and the FAO. Fernando teaches legal translation at Universidad de Comillas (Madrid) and has recently co-authored “Introducción al Common Law” published by Thomson Reuters. Click here to visit the practice's blog.

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Madalena Ferreira Åhman

Madalena Ferreira Åhman was born in Lisbon, where she obtained her law degree and postgraduate degree in EU law. She worked there as a business lawyer for nine years, before moving to Sweden in 1997.

Since then, Madalena has been working as a freelance legal translator, mainly for the Court of Justice of the European Union, translating from French, English, Italian and Swedish into Portuguese. She is also a state authorised translator from Swedish into Portuguese since 2002.


Malcolm Fowler

Having been admitted as a Solicitor in 1967, and gaining Higher Rights of Audience as a Criminal Advocate in 1995, up to his retirement in August 2016, Malcolm had been a criminal defence practitioner and higher court advocate appearing regularly in both Magistrates' and Crown Courts in the West Midlands and nationally. He was Chair of the Criminal Law Solicitors Association, and went on to become President of the Birmingham Law Society.

In 1999 Malcolm joined the Lord Chancellor's Advisory Committee on Legal Education and Conduct which had a large role in the preservation and development of principles within the legal educational services and conduct regimes.

Alongside this Malcolm was Chair of the Law Society's Criminal Law Committee, and for 16 years until July 2016 was a Law Society Council member and a member of the Society's Human Rights Committee, involved as such in numerous high profile human rights cases, both domestic and international.

He was also a member of the Law Society's Council members' Conduct Committee and for 12 years a member of its Legal Affairs and Policy Board. Malcolm remains a Trustee of the Law Society's Charity Board and since retirement last year has been increasingly engaged in human rights issues in liaison with the Human Rights Committee and UK and other Parliamentarians across party boundaries.

Those issues have notably included a steadfast belief in the human rights and other importance of the recognition and delivery of professional interpreting and translation services both at home and abroad.

He is a regular broadcaster on legal issues, especially on the subject of prisons and prison reform.


Yvonne Fowler

Dr Yvonne Fowler has practised as a legal interpreter trainer for over 20 years and has trained over 250 interpreters for the Diploma in Public Service Interpreting (Law Option). She also provides Continuing Professional Development for police officers, magistrates, lawyers and others in the judicial system on how to work through interpreters. She holds an MA in English Language Teaching, as well as a PhD in Interpreting Studies/Forensic Linguistics from Aston University.

She has published various articles on legal interpreting and has a particular interest in interpreters using prison video link in the courtroom. During the problems caused by the UK’s Ministry of Justice Framework Agreement on court interpreting, Yvonne made a written submission to the Parliamentary Select Committee.

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Ruth Gámez

Ruth Gámez is an expert legal translator with more than twenty years' experience translating legal and business documents from English into Spanish. She has an extensive knowledge of legal vocabulary and a proficient understanding of the law. Her areas of specialization are contracts, litigation, and family law. She is a law graduate and Translation & Interpreting graduate, as well as Certified (Sworn) Translator for the English language appointed by the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Her practice, run with colleague Fernando Cuñado, works for Spanish law firms and international organizations such as the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) and the FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations). Ruth also lectures in legal translation at Universidad de Comillas (Madrid) and has recently co-authored a book entitled “Introducción al Common Law” (An Introduction to Common Law). Click here to visit the practice's blog

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John O'Shea

For the last 20 years John O’Shea has been instrumental in helping international investors, multinationals with interests in Greece and Cyprus, as well as some of the top law firms in those countries, win major court cases and seal important deals through the medium of translation. His focus has been to tear down the perceived barrier of “it’s all Greek to me” and help them do business and safeguard and defend their rights.

He regularly interprets before the Greek courts and in arbitration proceedings, in cases he has translated. He also frequently translates Greek legislation into English to enable European and international bodies determine whether EU directives or terms agreed with the institutions are being properly transposed into Greek law. As someone who believes in the value of sharing expertise, he teaches courses on Greek-English legal and financial translation skills in Athens and online.

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Colonel Claudio Petrozziello, Embassy of Italy

Colonel Petrozziello speaks five languages, and holds degrees in System Analysis & Computer Programming; Economic & Financial Security; and International Strategic and Military Studies. He is qualified as a Military Legal Advisor (LEGAD).
Having qualified at the prestigious Italian Guardia di Finanza (GdF) Academy, he was promoted to Commander in 1995, responsible for ~350 people. For the next ten years he led units combating tax evasion & money laundering. In 2006 he became Chief of the Operational Oversight Unit for Sicily & Calabria.
From 2008 to 2010, as Lieutenant Colonel, he was posted to the Maritime Analysis and Operation Centre (Narcotics) in Lisbon, Portugal. In 2012, he was promoted to the rank of Colonel, and moved to Reggio Calabria as GdF County Commander. In 2013 he became Deputy Director of the GdF’s Highly Specialized Unit for National and International Investigations of money laundering, terrorist financing & financial crime investigations.

Since 2015 he has served as Customs, Tax, Excise, Anti-money laundering and Counter Terrorism Financing Expert at the Italian Embassy in London.
During his career, he has been involved in large-scale cross-border operations widely reported in international media.


José Sergio Pajares Nievas

José Sergio Pajares Nievas graduated from the University of Granada where he obtained his Degree in Translation and Interpreting Studies as well as a Master’s Degree in Teaching. He started his career as a researcher in 2012 after completing the Master’s Degree in Medical and Healthcare Translation offered by the Jaume I University. As a doctoral student at this university, he is working on his doctoral dissertation on the importance of medical-legal texts and their translation in legal medicine and forensic science.

He is also as a sworn translator-interpreter of English-Spanish and is currently working as a collaborator for the Gentt (Textual Genres for Translation) research group. He has recently published several papers on hybrid texts, translator training and the importance of translators in the work carried out by legal practitioners.

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Karen Rückert

Originally from the UK, Karen Rückert is a specialist legal translator based in Germany. She translates from German into English primarily in the fields of commercial law, intellectual property and litigation.

Karen works exclusively with direct clients which include German law firms, in-house counsel and Federal Ministries. She initially worked in-house for a large commercial law firm in Germany before embarking on her freelance career in 2007.

She holds an MA in Legal Translation and is a publicly appointed and sworn translator for the German courts.

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Juliette Scott

Juliette has over 25 years’ experience as a legal translation practitioner. Her specialist fields include corporate litigation, financial crime and EU legislation.

As a legal translation studies researcher, she has published several chapters & papers, and her doctoral thesis, entitled Legal Translation Outsourced, will be published by Oxford University Press in summer 2018.

She has a particular interest in continuing professional development and legal translators’ professionalization, as well as reinforcing links between academia and practice.

Oh, and she curates WordstoDeeds...


Ingemar Strandvik

Ingemar Strandvik is Quality Manager at the Directorate-General for Translation, European Commission, where he was formerly a translator.

He has a background as a state-authorised legal translator and court interpreter in Sweden. He also taught translation at Stockholm University and worked for many years as a lexicographer at the publishing house Norstedts. He was the editor of the first Spanish-Swedish dictionary. Apart from studies in Philology and degrees in Translation and Interpretation, he has an LLM in EU Law.

Ingemar regularly publishes academic papers, contributes to major book collections in the field, and is a respected authority on the subject of how translators fit into the lawmaking process at EU institutions, revision processes and and quality in legislation.