Wednesday 08 August 2012 by Jonathan Rayner
Conservative life peer Baroness Sandip Verma of Leicester has become patron of the BLD Foundation, a group that works to improve diversity and social mobility in the legal profession.
The BLD (formerly Black Lawyers Directory) Foundation provides young people with access to an array of career development opportunities, such as mentoring, workshops, work placements and events in order to reduce the social mobility barriers experienced by black, Asian, minority ethnic and other disadvantaged members of the community.
Verma has a strong interest in diversity and gender issues and is the House of Lords' spokesperson on women and equalities. She has won a number of national and international awards and is the patron of several charities.
She becomes patron ahead of the 6 September graduation of 45 students who have participated in this year's BLD Legal Launch Pad programme, which provides opportunities for young adults to gain intensive support and one-to-one mentoring from legal professionals as well as access to training, information and work placements.
Chair of the BLD Foundation board of trustees Debo Nwauzu told the Gazette: 'We are delighted to welcome Baroness Verma as a patron. Her experience and knowledge will be of immense value to the Foundation.'