Meet the Team
Who is behind DMJ Recruitment?
David Press – Director, DMJ Company Secretarial/DMJ Exec
David is one of the founding directors of DMJ and has specialised in the recruitment of company secretaries since 1999. DMJ Company Secretarial is the sole recruitment partner to the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators (ICSA).
Widely recognised as a leading name in this field, David has placed company secretaries into many of the UK’s leading businesses including FTSE 500 groups, limited companies, professional practices and financial services. David’s expertise lies in the mining, manufacturing, engineering, pharmaceutical and chemical sectors.
By forging close relationships with clients within his specialisms, David is able to understand their requirements and remain at the forefront of trends within the profession such as departmental structures, staff retention and salaries. He equally understands the importance of candidate relationships and meets with applicants to build an accurate picture of their career to date and their aspirations to provide bespoke careers advice.
Who is your role model? Enzo Ferrari who once famously said that 'the client is not always right'!
What is your top recruitment tip? Never attempt to be someone you are not - the client will see right through you
What's the best thing about working in recruitment? Every day brings a new challenge, fresh ideas and the opportunity to offer creative solutions to our clients and candidates.
Marc Tobias - Director, DMJ Legal
Marc is a one of the founding directors of DMJ. He graduated with a law degree from London University in 1995 before moving to the City to pursue a career in the financial markets. He moved into recruitment in 1999 and built a successful career specialising in finance and accountancy before returning to the legal sector.
He recruits assistants and partners for many of the City’s and West End’s leading law firms and prides himself on offering a service that is second to none. More recently Marc has focused on developing DMJ’s In-House team and recruits GCs and Heads of Legal for FTSE 100 companies, international organisations and start-ups. Clients often comment on his innovative approach to recruitment to ensure he leaves no stone unturned during the recruitment process. Candidates also like Marc’s straight-forward consultative approach towards finding the perfect role.
Outside the office Marc is a keen sports fan. He is an avid supporter of Arsenal Football Club and has recently completed his first, and probably only, triathlon.
Who is your role model? Dennis Bergkamp - cool under pressure, always wanted to succeed, team player who took great pleasure from helping his team mates score, and stuck to his footballing principles.
What is your top recruitment tip? Work with a consultant you trust and listen to their advice. We are experts in recruitment, so trust us when we make a suggestion.
What's the best thing about working in recruitment? It's a cliche but it is the variety that the job offers. One day I can be advising a client on retention policy, the next working on a high profile retained search campaign. The different clients and candidates we advise means that there are always new challenges and situations to deal with
Justin Kopelowitz – Director, DMJ Legal/DMJ Mergers
Justin is one of the founding directors of DMJ. He qualified as a solicitor in 1992, specialising in commercial property at Howard Kennedy prior to becoming a partner at a small West End firm. He moved into legal recruitment in 1999 and is now a leading name in partner and team moves within the City and internationally.
Justin also heads up DMJ Mergers where his intimate knowledge of the legal market has led to a number of high profile mergers of law firms within London, the US and Regional law firm markets.
When Justin isn't busy placing lawyers or merging firms, he loves to unwind by playing a competitive game of tennis or a round of golf with friends. He has recently developed a new-found interest in cooking and can often be found in the kitchen perfecting his secret recipe for the perfect curry!
Who is your role model? Sid James
What is your top recruitment tip? Be yourself.
What's the best thing about working in recruitment? Meeting lots of lawyers!
Leena Babajee - Consultant, DMJ Company Secretarial
Leena graduated with a law degree from The University of Sheffield in 2007 before moving to London to pursue her career in legal recruitment. She started her career at a leading legal recruitment consultancy focusing on placing junior to mid-level associates in-house and within City and international law firms. She then moved to a boutique headhunting consultancy where she focused solely on placing partners in both UK and US law firms. Leena joined the team in October 2010, she specialises in recruiting company secretaries at all levels into the leisure & retail, telecommunications, media, technology and professional services sectors.
Leena is a self-confessed gym addict who often indulges in pilates classes, yoga and the new Zumba craze! She also loves to travel. Recent spots of interest include Mauritius, Rome and Prague.
Who is your role model? Heidi Klum
What is your top recruitment tip? Get to know your clients candidates and empathise with them. Job descriptions and CVs only tell a small part of the story
What's the best thing about working in recruitment? The most satisfying thing is getting to know a candidate as a junior and keeping in touch with that person throughout the years. It is great to see how successful they have become knowing that you have assisted in their moves and acted in an advisory capacity.
Rory Strong - Consultant, DMJ Company Secretarial
Rory graduated in Geography from Durham University in 2010. He began his career in the entertainment industry where he honed his interpersonal skills and gained experience in the service sector before setting his sights on a career in recruitment. He joined DMJ in 2012 and believes his strong communication skills fit perfectly with the DMJ ethos. Rory specialises in serving clients within the insurance and support service sectors.
Outside of the office Rory is a keen fundraiser especially through physical and mental challenges, having recently completed a continuous 24 hour row for a local charity. As well as fundraising he is a music lover and scours the city for the best live venues and gigs.
Who is your role model? Michael J Fox.
What is your top recruitment tip? Make every call personal, have a conversation with the candidate to build a strong relationship of trust for future benefit.
What’s the best thing about working in recruitment? Talking with lots of varied people, building long-term working relationships and matching them with the right roles.
Chris Wilcox - Consultant, DMJ Company Secretarial
Chris took a degree in Music before achieving the Graduate Diploma in Law in 2007, followed by the LPC. Chris moved into recruitment in 2009 where he is dedicated to the recruitment of company secretaries of all levels within financial services, as well as the energy, property and construction sectors. Chris’s friendly and knowledgeable approach to recruitment ensures that all candidates and clients within his specialism are dealt with in a professional yet personal manner. He prides himself on his attention to detail.
Outside of the office Chris is a keen skier and musician, as well as being an avid cycler having completed several tours around Europe.
Who is your role model? Daley Thompson
What is your top recruitment tip? Meet as many people as possible. Meeting people face-to-face is vital in ensuring that clients meet candidates and candidates meet clients who will get on well and would work together as well as having the correct technical skills to do the job. Anyone that can read has the ability to match skills on a CV with skills required on a job specification, but only a proactive and dedicated consultant can match the right people with the perfect working environment.
What's the best thing about working in recruitment? Having the opportunity to meet such an eclectic bunch of people on a daily basis is fantastic, and something that very few other professions offer on the same scale. The variety of personalities never ceases to amaze me and the number of interesting stories that people tell me ensure that no day is ever the same.
Sarah Coughtrie - Managing Consultant, DMJ Legal
Sarah is a law graduate from the London School of Economics and has been recruiting lawyers since 2005. Having worked for an international Blue Chip recruitment company placing lawyers into private practice and in-house roles, Sarah joined DMJ Legal in December 2009 to focus on the recruitment of lawyers at all levels into London and regional law firms. Sarah has earned a reputation as an adaptable and intuitive recruiter and her candidates and clients appreciate her down to earth and honest approach. Sarah’s detailed understanding of the people she works with ensures she provides meaningful and practical advice at all times.
Sarah is a music fanatic and when not at work she can usually be found behind her decks refining her mixing skills or devouring the music press, obsessively hunting down rare tracks to add to her growing collection.
Who is your role model? I could make up something more worthy, but really it's got to be Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It may seem frivolous, but she is a real leader and I think an excellent role model; strong, courageous, honest, loyal and flawed. She never gives up and consistently rescues the world from imminent disaster, all without losing her humanity or worrying about her make-up.
What is your top recruitment tip? Be clear about your motivations for looking and what you want in a move. It’s good to be open minded, but ensure that when you brief your consultant you are candid and honest about your reasons for wanting to leave your current firm and what would make you happier. That way we can best advise you on which firms will suit your requirements, and best communicate on your behalf with our clients. I urge clients to be similarly transparent with me about their requirements and their feedback on candidates. Miscommunications happen all too easily and can ruin a good opportunity for both parties.
What's the best thing about working in recruitment? An individual’s career is one of the most important things in their life, and I like being involved with what is often a stressful and emotional process. I also like becoming close to a client and genuinely understanding their business and who would best fit in their team. The most rewarding moments are when I know a candidate and client well, the fit is perfect, and both candidate and client are delighted to have been introduced to each other.
Joanna Yardley – Consultant, DMJ Legal
Joanna studied Law with Business at the University of Birmingham and graduated with honours in 2010. She joined DMJ Legal in 2011 and specialises in placing Associates into Private Practice and has built up an impressive knowledge of this competitive market.
Outside of the office Joanna enjoys keeping fit and has recently completed a half marathon to raise money for a local cancer charity. Having successfully completed (and recovered from) her first marathon, Joanna now has her sights set firmly on completing others in the near future. When she is not pushing herself to the limits on the road, Joanna also enjoys travelling to different European cities to learn about different cultures and more importantly sample the local cuisines!
Who is your role model? My dad because of his ability to balance building a successful career in the City and then running his own business as well as having a family.
What is your top recruitment tip? To make sure your CV is up to date, accurate and easy to read. This is the first opportunity to impress a prospective employer and even if you have had a flawless career, if your CV doesn’t read well then this will impact on your application.
What's the best thing about working in recruitment? Every day is different and that you are constantly working with people.
Alex Ring – Consultant, DMJ Legal
Alex began his career working for a regional accountancy firm training as an accounts assistant. Since then he has worked for several professional services firms in the City. Prior to joining DMJ Alex was a Resourcing Co-ordinator in the in-house recruitment team of a top international law firm. Alex joined DMJ in April 2012 and now specialises in placing lawyers into Private Practice law firms across the London market. Outside of the office Alex enjoys cooking dinner for friends and visiting some of London’s top watering holes.
Who is your role model? Oliver Reed.
What is your top recruitment tip? Remember that an interview is a two way process, and as a candidate you should be comfortable asking the interviewer sensible questions that you want to know the answer to.
What's the best thing about working in recruitment? Working with like-minded people.
Jonathan Smyth – Consultant, DMJ Legal
Jonathan graduated from the University of East Anglia with a degree in Politics and Media studies. He began his career in legal recruitment in 2010 with a leading international consultancy in Manchester, before joining DMJ Legal in November 2012, focusing on a range of firms across the London Private Practice market.
Outside of the office, Jonathan can usually be found at the gym, or visiting London’s many football stadia when his beloved Manchester United come to town.
Who is your role model? Sir Alex Ferguson, you don’t spend 25 years at the top without some serious dedication and a huge work ethic!
What is your top recruitment tip? Give your candidates and clients the time and attention they deserve. Getting to know them will really help you understand their requirements.
What's the best thing about working in recruitment? You will always meet some really interesting and fun people.
Chika Okeke – Consultant, DMJ Legal
Chika graduated in law from Manchester Metropolitan University in 2010 and began her career in recruitment working for one of the key legal recruitment businesses in the North West. To date she has specialised in placing lawyers into Private Practice across Liverpool & Merseyside, focusing specifically within insurance. After great success in the North West she decided to re-locate back home to London and joined DMJ Legal in 2011 to focus on recruiting qualified lawyers into in-house roles.
Outside the office Chika likes to think of herself as a “home grown fashion designer”. She keeps up with the latest trends in the market, and designs a number of her own clothes which is great when wanting to save a few pounds in the shops!
Who is your role model? Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala -globally renowned Nigerian (Ibo) economist and one of only three female ministers in the world. I admire her for her contribution to Africa, Nigeria and to women. As a fellow Nigerian woman it is inspiring to see someone you can relate to on so many different levels striving and succeeding to make a real difference.
What is your top recruitment tip? "Think with the end in mind and do not just go anywhere". I encourage all my candidates to think about their future, the type of company they would like to join, and what role they want, and plan backwards.
What's the best thing about working in recruitment? Helping people build a career, rather than finding a job.
Buchi Osuji - Consultant, DMJ Legal
Buchi graduated with a degree in Law from London South Bank University in 2012. After working for some time at City law firms, he joined DMJ Legal as a consultant. Whilst studying, Buchi completed an EU funded Erasmus program that focused on state surveillance and civil liberties in the EU and remains interested in those issues. Buchi specialises in the recruitment of qualified in-house lawyers.
Before going to university, Buchi had a successful career performing in the West End and on tour in musicals such as ‘Wicked’ and ‘High school Musical’. Nowadays when Buchi is not working, he spends a lot of his time studying martial arts, hanging out with his friends or heading to various theatres to watch the latest play.
Who is your role model? Christopher Hitchens. His control of the English language and prodigious lust for knowledge is something to look up to and aspire to emulate. He also knew how to tell a joke, which always comes in handy!
What is your top recruitment tip? Make sure you truly understand your clients and candidates because this is the key to making the perfect match.
What’s the best thing about working in recruitment? There is always something new to sink your teeth into and the work is very rewarding.
Caroline Galtress – Consultant, DMJ Legal
Caroline is a history graduate from the University of East Anglia where she specialised in the History of Medicine. After graduating she briefly worked in mortgages before starting her career in recruitment in 2006 and has not looked back since! Prior to joining DMJ she recruited across the legal and finance sectors. Caroline joined the team in 2010 and now focuses on the recruitment of qualified lawyers into regional law firms and legal secretaries, PA's and paralegals in UK law firms.
Outside of work Caroline is still a keen historian and enjoys visiting museums and places of historical interest both in the UK and abroad. She also enjoys long walks and can often be found up in the Yorkshire hills trying not to get lost!
Who is your role model? Probably going to sound like a massive geek but I think Elizabeth I was a great role model, she is one of the great women in history to make a real change to the way women were viewed in society and proved that a woman could be successful, educated and powerful in her own right.
What is your top recruitment tip? Be honest with your clients and candidates with regards to their search and requirements. Gaining the trust of clients and candidates is key to providing both with the service they are looking for and ensuring a productive and successful relationship.
What’s the best thing about working in recruitment? The variety - getting to work with such a wide mix of people that you would be hard pushed to come by in any other role.
Ali Braid – Internal Recruitment Manager, DMJ Recruitment Ltd
Ali graduated from Warwick University in 2001 with a BA in English. She taught in a primary school for 2 years and then went to seek her fortune in the big smoke. She started her career in recruitment in 2003, recruiting finance staff to Public sector organisations. Ali moved into Training and Internal recruitment within the same recruitment firm in 2008.
As the Internal Recruitment Manager for DMJ, Ali is focussed on using her search and headhunting skills to recruit the best talent in the market that will enhance our company profile and add to the brands appeal. As an experienced Recruitment trainer Ali is on site to advise and coach our consultants, thereby ensuring our candidates and clients receive a tailored service and personal approach.
When Ali is not providing entertainment for her young son she sometimes visits the gym, goes running and frequents the theatre. She also enjoys a proper afternoon tea and is trying to work her way around the UK’s top tea rooms.
Who is your role model? Julie Andrews. Practically perfect in every way.
What is your top recruitment tip? Recruitment is all about people, if you have good relationships with the people you work with, whether that’s your colleagues, clients or candidates you will get positive results.
What is the best thing about working in recruitment? There is never a dull moment.
Alex Arnot – Non-Executive Director, DMJ Recruitment Ltd
Alex Arnot sits on the board, as the Non-Executive Director, of 15 recruitment companies which have a combined turnover well in excess of £100M+. With almost 20 years’ recruitment experience of both growing companies and successful exits he is one of the most sought-after experts within the sector. His mantra is that the success and growth of a company should be fuelled by standing out from the crowd through innovation and providing excellent customer value.