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‘I’m a great one for re-inventing myself’: Clifford Chance global COO Amanda Burton steps down

Magic Circle firm Clifford Chance (CC) has confirmed that global chief operating officer Amanda Burton will be stepping down from the role at the end of this year to ‘focus on non-executive board work’.

The news of Burton’s step-down emerges as major changes to the firm’s governance structure go live this month. In July it voted to overhaul its governance including establishing a 12-strong executive leadership group, on which Burton had secured a place as chief operating officer. Replacing the firm’s former 16-strong executive committee and chaired by global managing partner Matthew Layton, the slimmed-down executive group is tasked with setting and implementing the City giant’s strategy.

It is understood that the firm, which this year revealed its highest ever financial results to date with revenue up 7% to £1.36bn, will now seek potential candidates both internally and externally to succeed Burton in the role.

Having joined CC in 2000 from the now-acquired British builders merchant group Meyer International, where she served as legal and corporate services director, the Slaughter and May-trained Burton has been involved in streamlining the firm’s business services efforts and spearheading various initiatives including its New Delhi-based knowledge centre, a project set up in 2007 to provide support for CC’s global network on tasks including research and analysis. Burton was further involved in establishing the firm’s India-based global shared service centre (GSSC), a project designed to give the firm better control of costs and tighter central coordination of administration services.

On her departure, Layton said: ‘Amanda has made a fantastic contribution to the success of the firm over the 14 years that she has been with us. She leaves with our thanks and very best wishes for her future’.

Burton added: ‘I’m a great one for re-inventing myself. I’ve been with Clifford Chance for 14 years, the last four as global COO and I’ve come to the conclusion it’s time to move on and build a board portfolio. I’ve never had a career plan in my life and that has stood me in good stead; when opportunities have come along I’ve not automatically gone “that doesn’t suit me”, I’ll always have a look at it’.