John Rushton passed away peacefully at his home in the care of his wife Jenny on 22 May 2013, following a second battle with cancer. It was in late 2002 that John first became unwell with cancer. That was dealt with by surgery enabling John to return to work in the summer of 2003. Regrettably, in mid-2012, he was struck by cancer again, this time inoperable.
John obtained a law degree at Sidney Sussex College Cambridge and first worked as a solicitor for Freshfields in 1973. He became a litigator and later mainly working under Alan Redfern, he became experienced in construction cases. In 1980 John moved to a smaller London firm, Rowe and Maw, acting for clients such as the European Investment Bank in Luxembourg, North East Thames Regional Health Authority, and British Steel. His work also included work in the theatre industry.
John became a highly respected solicitor leading to equity partnership in 1986. He became Managing Partner for the Construction and Engineering Group of Rowe and Maw in 1992 and served on the Board of the firm from 1999 to 2002. Rowe and Maw amalgamated with Mayer Brown and Platt in 2002 and became Mayer Brown International LLP shortly after. John retired from Mayer Brown in March 2009. He continued his love of arbitration becoming UK Arbitration and Alternative Dispute Resolution Consultant of the International Chamber of Commerce. John also became an experienced and well respected construction industry adjudicator.
John Rushton had a 20 year period as retained external legal adviser to the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, having been recommended to a Council Member by a young associate in another law firm. His contribution was always professional, pragmatic and diligent. He was skilfully able to deal with the widely differing issues arising in that period of growth of the Chartered Institute. John's wide knowledge of arbitration and construction made him an obvious choice to be recruited to the Professional Conduct Committee of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators. His contribution was legally incisive and imbued with practical common sense. During his last year, John's mind was as sharp as a razor despite the physical damage that was occurring to his body. He continued to make his contributions to the deliberations of the Professional Conduct Committee, dictating his analyses and contributions for submission, and attending the meetings by telephone.
John Rushton was one of those rare individuals one gets to know in life who brought joy to all he knew. He was a true gentleman and he gave his time selflessly. He will be missed by his family, his friends, and those who worked with him professionally at Mayer Brown, the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, the Society of Construction Arbitrators, the Society of Construction Law, ICC UK and in the Worshipful Company of Arbitrators of which John was a Past Master.
Combining his interests in the City of London and in arbitration, John became a Freeman of the City of London and was admitted as a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Arbitrators in 1997. His talents did not go unnoticed and he was very quickly appointed to the Court of Assistants and was for some time Chairman of the Charitable Trust. He was elected Junior Warden of the Company in 2006 and served a very successful year as Master Arbitrator in 2008/2009, organised to follow his retirement from full time practice.