The Document Excellence Group is run by a team of volunteers.
Andrea Bowyer – Norton Rose Fulbright LLP
Angela Crossland – Independant ConsultantMembership Secretary
Annette Brown – Milbank
Clare Waller – Independent ConsultantCommittee Chair
Jay Speight – Baker McKenzieSecretary
Jayne Smith – Bluebird Support Services LimitedTreasurer
Joanne Humber – Humber Associates
Julie McCarthy- Tikit Ltd
Kim Walton – Dentons & Enable
Maria Clancy – BigHand
Robert Lankester – RLegal Engineering Ltd
Sheila Quansah-Solomon – Allen & Overy LLP
With strong expertise across enterprise applications, Andrea has particular knowledge within the document management, production and productivity space. Following 12 years at regional law firm Ward Hadaway, where she implemented Standard Styles and most recently acted as applications lead on the Windows 10 / Office 2016 desktop refresh project, Andrea is now an Applications Analyst at Norton Rose Fulbright LLP, where she intends to maintain her focus on product optimisation and user experience improvements.
In her spare time Andrea enjoys the theatre, is an avid bookworm and a fan of The West Wing, sci-fi and TED Talks. She has an unnatural love of the number 1013 and is an occasional collector of law firm pens. She is interested in psychology and neuroscience, along with politics and can be found running a Polling Station during elections.
Committee member since January 2013
Angela has been involved in the world of legal IT for 18 years, working with both law firms and software providers during this time. She has a passion for empowering users through education, as well as by providing solutions that are intuitive to use. Combine this with a love of problem solving, and a keen attention to detail, you can see why she’s found the legal document lifecycle has plenty to keep her interested.
Committee member since November 2013
As the IT Manager for Milbank in Europe Annette is responsible and accountable for the smooth running of the Firm’s information technology systems in the London, Frankfurt and Munich offices. Annette manages the IT team who are responsible for delivering day to day IT/helpdesk support, IT Training, System Management and IT Infrastructure & Projects.
Recent IT projects Annette has worked on have included the move of core infrastructure to a co-location, upgrade to Windows 10, Office 2016, migration of Office phones in Europe from Avaya to Cisco and is currently working on deploying SpecOps, Rimeto and Kappris printing solution.
Committee member since January 2015
With too many years working with law firms’ documents than she would like to admit to, Clare is passionate about making Microsoft Office work for you and a specialist in legal document production.
Committee member since February 2014
With twenty years’ experience in Document Production and Desktop Publishing in Professional Services and Law, Jay is an experienced manager of onsite and offshore teams with a passion for delivering quality standards and operational efficiencies. Currently the KM Systems Manager at Baker McKenzie working in partnership with the Global technology team and external vendors to translate business requirements to innovative technology solutions.
Secretary and Design
Committee member since October 2018
Jayne is an expert in delivering outsourced legal secretarial support with a strong focus on lean processes and efficient cost-effective technology. Her clients rank amongst the top 100 UK and US law firms delivering bespoke solutions to maintain best value support, improving brand, and enabling exceptional client experience. With her in depth knowledge of legal technology applications and business processes she quickly identifies where improvements can be made to lead to increased profitability.
Committee member since May 2016
For more than 25 years Joanne Humber has delivered IT training programmes to law firms across the world – initially through her own company and for 8 years as Director of Training for Phoenix Business Solutions. Since leaving Phoenix in 2015 she has been actively promoting the Legal Technology Core Competency Certification Coalition (LTC4) which was formed more than 6 years ago by law firm training and IT professionals to address the skills gaps which exist within the industry. Her experience of working with law firms of all sizes clearly demonstrated the need to improve technology skills in a way which is relevant to the way they work, with whichever software or devices they choose to use…laptop, PC, smartphone or tablet….and wherever they may be based. LTC4 are strategic partners of UKDEG.
Committee member since January 2014
Julie McCarthy is a Lead Consultant at Tikit with over 20 years’ experience working in a variety of sectors ranging from legal, wealth management and media. In her previous role she was a training manager for over 5 years and is proficient in promoting and delivering training solutions designed to support the business plan. Julie is passionate about creating an interactive and enjoyable environment that supports learning.
Committee member since December 2016
Kim has worked in and with law firms for over 25 years. She has been a supporter of the UKDEG since its inception and has been on the Organising Committee since 2006. Kim has attended most of the Document Excellence Days (formerly known as Word Excellence Days), presenting at several including running some fun Vendor challenge sessions. Kim is a strong advocate for the use of the UKDEG standard style initiative, having implemented this in her firm in 2013.
Kim is passionate about finding ways to improve the document production process and working with Vendors to improve their products. She has many years experience in template development and implementing house styles, fixing document issues, development document automation templates, and working with many tools that are used within the document production and negotiation process.
Committee member since 2006
Maria Clancy is the UK & EMEA Document Solutions Manager at BigHand. She has over 30 years’ experience working in law firms, in roles ranging from IT Trainer to Project Manager and Quality Services Manager. Her career spans both niche top-ranked Legal 500 firms and large Corporate practices including Hammond Suddards and Walker Morris. As a self-employed consultant she has delivered programmes assisting law practices to attain the Investors in People, Legal Aid Franchise and Lexcel Standards.
In her current role, she engages with clients to assist them in meeting their document production objectives and supports them through their journey to successful adoption of their chosen solutions and into a programme of continuing improvement.
Committee member since February 2020
Rob is the Founder and Director of RLegal Engineering Ltd, a specialist document automation consultancy; providing the automation of documents and advice on project implementation to large law firms and in-house legal departments. Rob was responsible for the global implementation of document automation at BLP (now Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner (BCLP)) where he was described by his peers as ‘a game changer’. Previously, Rob was at Irwin Mitchell for over nine years, where he led several knowledge and change initiatives and implemented document automation before taking on its management full time, automating 250 documents in the first year. Rob was named as one of Thomson Reuters Automation Champions and his work has been featured in leading industry publications.
Committee member since August 2016
Sheila Quansah-Solomon is the Document Technology Specialist at Allen & Overy LLP. She has over 37 year’s experience working in law firms, starting her career as a Personal Assistant and later as Training Consultant. Over the last 29 years working for Allen & Overy LLP she has held various positions, starting as a Word-processing Operator she progressed to a Systems Analyst, IT Trainer for the Document Production department, IT Helpdesk Support Analyst, Documents Service Line Leader, Document Expert Analyst, Document Application Support Team Leader and in the last six years as a Document Technology Specialist.
She is a founding member of the UK Document Excellence Group (UKDEG) and had chaired and presented at various Word Excellence Day and UKDEG events. Before joining Allen & Overy in 1990 she worked in numerous blue chip firms as IT Training Consultant developing and delivering high-end bespoke technical training on software applications.
In her current role, she assumes a global product service owner for core document production applications, assisting with technical thought leadership, offering deep subject-matter expertise and 4th-line support for complex problems. She engages with application Vendors, key business users and IT representatives to ensure that document production strategies are aligned with the Firm’s business and IT strategic objectives including developing the future strategy for the firm’s core document applications.
She has in-depth knowledge of document production applications and systems including MS Office especially Word, document comparison and metadata stripping applications, document automation systems. She also has good knowledge of document management systems and is familiar with best practice technology and document production procedures and policies.
Committee member since October 2004
Judye Releford – KP Labs
Judye Carter Releford brings more than 30 years of energy from various roles including document production, technology training, software implementation and consulting services.
She has served as an integral member of software development teams at TechLaw, Esquire Innovations and BigHand and as a document lifecycle evangelist for Litera Microsystems. Judye enjoys contributing to industry thought leadership. You’ll find her articles on document automation, process improvement and training published in LegalTech Newsletter, The Legal Secretary, ALA, law.com, NALS, among others.
Judye is a business analyst for Keesal Propulsion Labs – a technology company that specializes in business and legal process automation.
US, California Chapter
Committee member since October 2019
Sherry has more than 30 years’ experience in the design, implementation and change management surrounding content-authoring technologies. She has written and spoken widely to address the needs, goals and strategies of document-intensive businesses, and is an expert in Microsoft Office applications. She was recognized by ILTA as Innovative Consultant of the Year in 2014, and as Vendor Thought Leader in 2017. Sherry is a member of the Document Lifecycle Evangelist team at Litera Microsystems.
Committee member since October 2019
Tracy Kraft is the Marketing Director of Kraft Kennedy, a technology consulting firm that specializes in legal IT. Tracy plans and oversees the implementation of the firm’s marketing and branding strategies. She is an expert in experiential marketing and manages the firm’s digital strategy along with its partner relations. Tracy has held this post for five years, where she has been able to contribute unique insight gained from serving in a variety of roles across the organization for over 15 years. She is an active participant in the International Refugee Assistance Program, the Hunts Point Alliance for Children, and the Wolf Conservation Center.
US, New York Chapter
Committee member since October 2019