Dr Ann Olivarius, Managing Partner

Dr Ann Olivarius has managed complex legal matters for 25 years.  In addition to her corporate practice, she is committed to using the law to help people who have suffered injustice. She opened AO Advocates to focus on the plight of survivors of child sexual abuse, including those abused in an institutional setting by adults in formal positions of power, trust and responsibility.

As an undergraduate at Yale, Ann worked in the office of the Chief Justice of the United States and was deeply involved in a landmark civil rights case, Alexander v. Yale, which sought to protect students from the practice of being forced to trade sex for grades.  Because of her work on this case, she was cited by the American Civil Liberties Union on its list of the nine most influential actors in the history of Title IX, the U.S. law prohibiting discrimination in schools and universities.  She later obtained a D.Phil. in Economics from Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar, and a JD and MBA from Yale in just three years, with highest honours.  She clerked for Marilyn Hall Patel, U.S. District Judge in San Francisco, and worked in the Mergers and Acquisitions departments of Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs. 

Ann’s career includes service as a legal and business advisor for Computer Memories, Inc. and Perot Systems, devising contracts that became widely used in the software applications industry, and drafting London arbitration rules that came to frame international arbitration practice.  She was head of the corporate department in the Washington, D.C. office of Shearman & Sterling.  She was also the first CEO and General Counsel of the Sarnoff Endowment for Cardiovascular Science, whose assets she grew from a valuation of $28 million to more than $100 million, also developing its scientific programs and internal management.

She moved to London in 1999 and established the London office of McAllister Olivarius, which works with corporate clients and individuals on both sides of the Atlantic, including M&A transactions, advisory work and litigation.  She has served on the boards of GenerationNext! and the National Alliance for Autism Research (UK), also known as Autistica.  She is also CEO/Chair of The Rhodes Project, which evaluates the careers and life choices of Rhodes Scholars worldwide.

Ann co-founded AO Advocates in 2011, believing that child sexual abuse was a worldwide scourge and that its survivors in England and Wales deserved vigorous and specialised legal representation. In 2012 she delivered a keynote speech describing the firm’s approach to a meeting of the Association of Child Abuse Lawyers in London, the leading practitioners in this area.