Mon, 22 April 2024

Celia Hampton, former AEJ Vice President and UK Section Secretary, dies

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Celia Hampton, who had many good friends among journalists in AEJ sections across Europe and served as an international AEJ Vice President from 2004-08, died earlier this month after a long battle with lung disease.  Celia was a familiar and active figure at many past AEJ Congresses , and she put her valuable legal expertise at the service of the AEJ during the complex process of revising the association’s Statutes some years ago.

Celia was a long-standing and much valued member of the UK Section, serving as its Secretary from 2006-2010, as well as being an acting Chairman and Treasurer in earlier years.

In 2001 she created and launched the UK section’s website- and she continued to develop and edit it for the next 15 years, making it into a valuable record of the AEJ’s activities in the UK and internationally.

She began her career by qualifying as a barrister in the 1960s, before switching her energies to editing the prestigious International Comparative Law quarterly magazine, and writing and editing two Newsletters for the Financial Times on Business Law, including one specialising in Eastern Europe. In recent years she continued, despite her increasing frailty and ill health, to write expert reports and commentaries regularly for Competition Law Insight.

Celia is survived by her son, Adam who lives outside London.

Peter Kramer, former AEJ Secretary General (2004-12), writes from Brussels:

Celia will be hugely missed by me and others who became firm friends with her through her splendid work in and for the international AEJ, as well asfor the UK Section. She and I first met in 2004 at the AEJ InternationalGeneral Assembly in Kosice, Hungary. That meeting was the first after a crisis in the AEJ due to serious organisational strains. A new board was elected, in which Celia became Vice President and I became the new Secretary General.

‘Kosice’  was the beginning of the resurgence of the AEJ, on which she and Iworked for many years together with other colleagues. Celia’s strength,steely intellect and keen legal mind played a crucial role.

After she stood down as Vice President in 2008, she stayed active as theinvaluable legal advisor to the AEJ.  Despite her inability to travelbecause of her failing health, the communication and cooperation was alwaysseamless.

In order to make the AEJ  a more modern and incisive organisation it wasdecided to make significant changes to the structure and statutes of theassociation. Celia became a tower of strength, shaping, guiding andchallenging to meet our agreed goals, and in the end we overcame all thehurdles. During this process she was straightforward, very calm  under
pressure, and had a wonderful sense of humour.

Finally, at the AEJ General Assembly in Brussels in November 2013, the newstatutes were approved.  Celia and I met a few months later for acelebratory lunch together in London.  We talked about putting the world(and the AEJ!) to rights. This turned out to be the last time we metpersonally.

I will always remember Celia as a good friend, a great colleague andaltogether a rather wonderful  person.

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