The recruitment process for a new chief executive of the Law Society is under way after Desmond Hudson announced his retirement from the post earlier this month.  

The exercise will be overseen by the office-holders and managed by the director of HR. Members of the Society’s Management Board and Council will comprise the appointment panel.

Hudson joined the Society as chief executive in September 2006, following a spell as chief executive of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland. He will leave Chancery Lane after this year’s July AGM.

The Society said: ‘Under his leadership, the Society has developed to become an internationally renowned organisation that supports and represents its members around the world.

‘Mr Hudson has strengthened the Society by streamlining its management structure, introducing new technology and communication platforms, reforming pay and pension arrangements, and boosting revenues generated from commercial activity to invest in member services.’  

Hudson said: ‘A year ago I took the decision to retire in 2014. It has been a privilege and a pleasure to serve the Society during this time of change for the legal profession and I look forward to continuing to do so until I depart.’

Society president Nicholas Fluck said: ‘Des has delivered an outstanding service and has been a powerful advocate for the solicitors’ profession for eight years. He will be a tough act to follow.’

When a replacement is found, a handover to the new chief executive will take place around the time of the AGM, the Society said.

Hudson qualified as a solicitor in 1980 and worked in private practice until 1987. He then joined the Yorkshire Building Society as an assistant solicitor and held a number of positions there before taking up the post of head of lending at the Britannia Building Society.

In 1995 he became operations director of Britannia Life, where he later became managing director.

In 1998, Hudson joined SMG (Scottish Media Group) as chief executive of the publishing division and was appointed a director of SMG plc in 1999. He moved to the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland in 2004.