Bolton AFG Law Chief Executive New Law Society President

The new president of the Bolton Law Society found her first job leafing through The Bolton News.

Managing Director of AFG Law Anita Boardman, 51, applied for her first job in the profession when she saw an ad in the newspaper more than 30 years ago.

Growing up in Leigh she originally had other career ideas including journalism, an air hostess or banking but her Bolton Wanderers FC supporting father who used to buy the Bolton Evening News for its BWFC coverage noticed the ad and it hasn’t looked back since.

The announcement was for the junior legal secretary of the company she now leads, alongside her co-chief executive Greg French.

“I had already started my law degree and didn’t get a very good grade, but I passed,” she said. “I realized it took a little more effort to get a good grade, but at the time the company was amazing, even back then, in supporting young people in their education. So I did all my exams and worked at the same time – it took me 13 years. I qualified in 2003.

Anita cites taking over the firm with Greg in 2016 as the highlight of her career and wishes to apply the same energy with which she approached this role to her year-long chairmanship of the Bolton Law Society.

Greg French and Anita Boardman AFG LAW

She said: “We came up with the Bolton Law Society vision. Be the voice of notaries. Promote excellence in the profession. To safeguard the rule of law. We could change that last bit.

“I took the role very seriously. I’m not saying other presidents haven’t, it’s just my mindset.

“I wanted to make sure that as president, Bolton is more aware of what the Law Society can offer. It is essentially a question of making the law known.

“We have a website that our former president worked hard to put together. I want the public to be aware of this so that they can enter the legal profession through a different route, not just by going to AFG Law, but by going to Bolton Law Society and choosing a local lawyer on their own of its appearance on this website.

One of Anita’s main goals is to challenge old ways so that young members of the profession feel included and participate more in Law Society events.

“When I started in the profession I used to go to the Bar function and there were 200 people there,” she said. “Before, there were guests as well as the profession itself. It was an honor to go to this event.

“I think because of the phones, the internet, the emails, it’s too fast to communicate that way and we’ve lost that art of meeting people. So I want to bring that back on the table by as President of the Bar – people get more involved in these events and not just 50 people there.

“You want to go, you’re not made to go.”

Anita also hopes to combine the bars of Bolton and Bury, so it’s “even better and bigger”.