The Return Of The Former Big Law CEO Demonstrates Part Of The COVID Crisis Upside for New Zealand

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The Return Of The Former Big Law CEO Demonstrates Part Of The COVID Crisis Upside for New Zealand 10

Former Big Law Chief Executive Alastair Carruthers is one of the ‘brains’ returning to New Zealand as a result – in part – of the COVID pandemic and establishing a new business at a time when returning ‘brain gainers’ may help New Zealand dig its way out of the COVID crisis.

A man with a diverse professional career ranging not only from his work as Chief Executive of Chapman Tripp for 13 years and Kensington Swan (now Dentons Kensington Swan), Carruthers has also worked as executive assistant to a then Education Minister Phil Goff, taught music and writing, worked as a consultant, chaired arts boards.

He has also produced the movie Romeo & Juliet: A Love Song and worked on a legal drama involving the Irish pro-Nazi propagandist Lord Haw-haw.

His career commenced with his study for a music and English degree at Victoria University before studying writing in the United States.

His communication abilities lead to a consultancy that let him combine his writing abilities with his teaching skills to develop a consultancy assisting professional firms, government agencies and others to communicate effectively.

His abilities in communications lead to his CEO role at Chapman Tripp, who were joining the rest of the legal profession attempting to understand the implications of the Resource Management Act, using Carruthers’ to help break down the legalese and its real meanings so that he was later given the CEO role for the firm at the age of 32.

Despite his long-term partner Peter Gordon living in London and his desire to spend more time there, he subsequently accepted a role at Kensington Swan, a firm he long admired for its progressive stance and “wonderful lawyers” it had produced, so long as he could ‘commute’ from one side of the world to the other.

It lasted for a while, but Carruthers left Kensington Swan (pre- the Dentons hookup) to live in London. However, COVID among other factors has changed the world and he has now returned

The Return Of The Former Big Law CEO Demonstrates Part Of The COVID Crisis Upside for New Zealand 11
Peter Gordon & Alastair Carruthers – Image: The Guardian

Now, with partner the kiwi celebrity chef and author Peter Gordon, who has lived in London for over 30 years and is also signature chef at the SkyCity ‘Sugar Club’, the two are home to start a new business called Homeland, designed as a ‘food embassy’ top sell New Zealand produce to the world, as well as running an Auckland-based cooking school.

freeing him upto focus on a new venture supporting the local food sector.

“Like many New Zealanders in these COVID-19 times, I have looked at my life and career, and what I’d like the present and the future to be. I am now living back here permanently and have decided to do things in my country a bit differently,” Peter Gordon said in a statement.

And with his former law firm CEO partner alongside, the eventful career of Alastair Carruthers takes yet another interesting turn.

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