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Keynote Speakers
Concurrent Speakers
Social Activities
Canberra 101
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2018 COAT National Conference
7 - 8 June, 2018I QT Canberra, ACT

Main Program Speakers

Thrills Spills and Skills Session Presenters
Ms Laura Beacroft
ACT Sentence Administration Board/ ACT Civil and Administrative Tribunal (ACAT)

Laura Beacroft is currently the Chair of the ACT Sentence Administration Board (ie the parole board) and a senior Member, ACT Civil and Administrative Tribunal. Laura has held senior positions at NSW Legal Aid Commission, the Australian Institute of Criminology, in corporate regulation, and developing/managing policies and programs in the justice system (for eg the Indigenous Legal Services, Family Violence Prevention Legal Services). She has moonlighted in radio, creating programs for ABC radio, and also done guest lecturing around Australia and overseas. She is a co-author of the textbook "Indigenous Legal Issues" - the 5th edition will be published in mid-2018. Laura is a solicitor, having graduated from UNSW, and also has other degrees in environmental science and sociology.

Dr Janina Boughey
University of New South Wales

Janina is a Senior Lecturer in the UNSW Faculty of Law, and a member of the Gilbert + Tobin Centre of Public Law. Janina teaches and researches in Australian, Canadian and UK public law. Her work focuses on the interaction between human rights and judicial review of administrative action, comparative administrative law, statutory interpretation, and the nature and limits of the constitutional powers of the judiciary and legislature to hold the executive to account.

Janina's book, 'Human Rights and Judicial Review in Australia and Canada: The Newest Despotism?' (Hart, 2017), examines the effect of judicially-enforceable human rights charters on the development of the principles of judicial review of administrative action in Australia and Canada. She is also a co-author of 'Public Law and Statutory Interpretation: Principles and Practice' (Federation Press, 2017), a student-focused text which examines fundamental public law principles together with the principles and process of statutory interpretation. Her current projects include a collaborative research project examining trends in the use of legislation and its interpretation and their implications for the scope and review of executive power and a forthcoming book on Australian government liability and remedies (with Greg Weeks).

Janina holds a PhD from Monash University (for which she received the 2014 Mollie Holman doctoral medal), undergraduate degrees in Law and Economics (social science) from Sydney University (both with first class honours), and an LLM in government law from the Australian National University. She has previously worked in a number legal, policy and research positions including in the Administrative Law section of the Commonwealth Attorney-General's Department, as a researcher in the Department of the Senate, and as Chair of Social Security Rights Victoria (a Community Legal Centre focussed on social security law). Janina is the reviews editor of the Australian Journal of Administrative Law.

Ms Gina Frampton
Clear Communication Consultant, Writing Comes Alive

Gina is a lawyer, editor and journalist. She graduated in law from the Universities of Cape Town and Sydney, working first in industrial law in South Africa and then in commercial litigation in Sydney – a spectrum of work that extended from a legal centre in a squatter camp to a large corporate law firm.

She later studied journalism at the University of Technology,Sydney, and has been a member of the Institute of Professional Editors for 17 years.

Gina is passionate about clarity in writing and communication and has worked for more than 15 years in the legal, banking, insurance and government sectors.

Chief Magistrate Lorraine Walker
ACT Chief Magistrate

Chief Magistrate Walker was appointed to the ACT Magistrates Court in  April 2010.

Prior to her appointment as a Magistrate she had over 20 years experience in the legal profession working as a barrister in the ACT for the 10 years.  Magistrate Walker has extensive experience, which includes being a partner of a law firm, a crown prosecutor, a solicitor and a legal officer in the Royal Australian Air Force. She also tutored at the Australian National University and mentored junior practitioners.

Magistrate Walker is a keen advocate of alternative dispute resolution.  Recently she provided an email of support in relation to University of Canberra setting up an Alternative Dispute Resolution Unit in Law, by saying “I am of the view that any law degree which fails to address ADR options is also failing future lawyers and, more significantly, the community. There are very few areas of law and jurisdictions in which ADR is not now formally mandated, to some degree. A proper understanding of the forms and role of ADR, along with some knowledge as to its practice, is part of the basic skill set of a 21st century lawyer in Australia.” (By email on 20 March 2012).

Concurrent Session Presenters
Mr Tim Begbie
Australian Government Solicitor

Tim holds the position of Senior General Counsel at AGS. He has a busy counsel practice, appearing in Courts and Tribunals around Australia in national security matters, public law litigation and civil regulatory proceedings.

He has particular expertise in cases involving the protection of sensitive information, including national security information. He has appeared in relation to these issues in the Federal Court, numerous State and Territory superior courts and civil and military tribunals. This has included cases in the specialist Security Appeals Division of the AAT, as well as challenges to Tribunal proceedings in the Federal Court.

Mr Justin Davidson
Team Leader, Law Enforcement Team, Dispute Resolution, Australian Government Solicitor



Justin leads the law enforcement team in AGS Dispute Resolution. Justin regularly acts for Commonwealth agencies and personnel before inquests, commissions of inquiry and parliamentary proceedings. Among others, he was solicitor on the record for the Commonwealth in the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse and the Royal Commission into the Protection and Detention of Children in the Northern Territory. He assists a wide range of Commonwealth parties in responding to subpoenas and other compulsory information notices in courts and tribunals around Australia.

A recognised leader in information access law, he regularly advises on and appears in disputes under the Freedom of Information Act 1982, Privacy Act 1988 and Archives Act 1983. Justin also has significant expertise in administrative law litigation and is a section editor for the Australian journal of administrative law.

Dr Bertus de Villiers
State Administrative Tribunal of Western Australia

Bertus de Villiers (BA Law, LL.B, LL.D) is a Member of the State Administrative Tribunal of Western Australia. He is also an Adjunct Professor of the Law School of Curtin University, Perth.  He is admitted as a legal practitioner in South Africa and Australia. He is a Fellow of the Alexander von Humboldt Stiftung (Germany). Dr De Villiers has published extensively in areas of administrative and constitutional law. He is co-author of an authoritative book on the State Administrative Tribunal. He has lectured at various institutions in Australia and abroad. In recent years he has been invited to Ethiopia, Sudan, the Philippines, Pakistan and South Sudan to give lectures on constitutional issues.

Justice Greg Garde AO RFD
President, Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT)

Justice Garde was appointed a Justice of the Supreme Court of Victoria on 29 May 2012. Before His Honour’s appointment to the Supreme Court, he was a practising Queens Counsel. Justice Garde signed the Victorian Bar Roll in 1974, and was appointed a Queens Counsel in 1989.

Justice Garde has also lectured in Administrative and Constitutional Law. His Honour is a former Chairman of the Planning and Local Government Committee of the Commercial Bar Association and of the Bar's Law Reform Committee. His Honour is a former President of the Victorian Chapter of the Council of Australasian Tribunals.

He was appointed President of VCAT on 1 June 2012.

Mr Doug Humphries OAM
President, Law Society of NSW

Doug Humphreys has more than 35-years’ legal and managerial experience across a diverse range of legal practice and policy areas. He has been a Councillor of the Law Society since 2008 and participated in key policy committees including Professional Conduct, Licencing, Disclosure, Ethics and Government Solicitors.
Doug began his career in private practice following his graduation with a combined Commerce/Law degree at University of NSW in 1980. He went on to work for the Criminal Law Division of the Legal Aid NSW from 1984 until 1993 when he took up the role as the
division’s Director, a position he held until 2003. Doug was then appointed Principal Registrar and Chief Executive Officer of the Commonwealth Administrative Appeals Tribunal.

During this time, he completed a Master of Laws at Monash University majoring in tribunal procedures. He also served as Secretary and then Executive Officer of the Council of Australasian Tribunals from 2003 to 2009. Doug has been a member of the Australian Army Reserve since 1976. He was commissioned as an officer in the Royal Australian Infantry in 1979. He remains an active member of the Reserve. He holds a Graduate Diploma of Military Law with merit from Australian National University. Doug was Principal Member of the Veterans’ Review Board from 2010 until taking up the role of President of the Law Society on January 1, 2018.

Ms Kate Carnell AO
Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman

Kate Carnell commenced as Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO) in March 2016.

Kate brings extensive experience and knowledge to the role of Ombudsman, having run her own small businesses for 15 years before becoming ACT Chief Minister in 1995 for a five year period. Prior to her appointment as the inaugural ASBFEO, Kate held the position of CEO of the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, which represents more than 300,000 businesses across Australia. She has also served two years as CEO of beyondblue, four years as CEO of the Australian Food and Grocery Council, four years as CEO of the Australian General Practice Network (AGPN) and three years as CEO of the National Association of Forest Industries (NAFI). Kate is a pharmacist by profession and was the inaugural chair of the ACT Branch of the Pharmacy Guild of Australia and the first female to become the National Vice-President of the Pharmacy Guild of Australia. Kate was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia in 2006 for her services to the community through contributions to economic development and support for the business sector, knowledge industries, the medical sector and medical technology advances.

Ms Sian Leathem
CEO and Principal Registrar, Administrative Appeals Tribunal

Sian Leathem is the current Registrar and Chief Executive Officer of the AAT for a five year term which commenced on 7 April 2015.Her role is to assist the President to manage the Tribunal and advise on its operations and performance. The Registrar may act on behalf of the President in relation to the administration of the Tribunal.

Ms Leathem has over ten years’ experience in tribunal management at both state (NSW) and federal level. She led the project team responsible for merging twenty-two existing tribunals into the New South Wales Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NCAT) and performed the role of Principal Registrar of that amalgamated tribunal.

Prior to her role at NCAT, Ms Leathem was the Registrar of the Workers Compensation Commission of NSW for five years. Ms Leathem also has a wealth of legal policy experience that she gained through various roles in the NSW Attorney General’s Department and in the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet.

Ms Leathem holds a Bachelor of Laws (Hons), a Master of Arts (Merit) and an Executive Masters in Public Administration.  In 2002 Ms Leathem was awarded the Excellence in Government Legal Service Award by the Law Society of New South Wales and in 2014 she received the Excellence in Leadership Award from the NSW Department of Justice. She was also awarded the Young Public Sector Leader Award by the Institute of Public Administration Australia in 2011.

Ms Jann Lennard
New South Wales Civil and Administrative Tribunal

Jann has been serving on Tribunals for 20 years, her first appointment was to the ACT Residential Tenancy Tribunal in 1998, she also served on the ACT Guardianship and Management of Property Tribunal and the ACT Consumer and Trader Tribunal until 2009 when she was appointed to ACAT. In 2011 Jann was appointed to the Consumer Trader and Tenancy Tribunal in NSW and then to NCAT .

- ACT Finalist Telstra Business Women’s Awards - Shell Corporate and Government Award, 1999.
- Vice Chancellor’s Award for Excellence University of Canberra 1998. The theme of the award was the promotion of the University within Australian professions.

Ms Emma Montgomery
Senior Legal Member, Mental Health Tribunal, VIC

Ms Emma Montgomery was appointed as a Senior Member of the Victorian Mental Health Tribunal (Tribunal) in July 2014. Prior to her appointment Emma was a senior public servant in the Department of Health and led the review of the Mental Health Act 1986 (Vic), including statewide community consultations and the preparation of green and white papers. At that time, Victoria’s law regulating compulsory mental health treatment was based on an outdated paradigm of substitute decision making which was inconsistent with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities and the Charter for Human Rights and Responsibilities Act 2006 (Vic). The reforms introduced in the Mental Health Act 2014 (Vic) included the introduction of supported decision making as well as the establishment of the Tribunal and Mental Health Complaints Commissioner.

Emma has Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Laws (University of Tasmania), a Master of Laws (University of Western Australia) and a Master of Public Administration (Australian and New Zealand School of Government and Melbourne University).

Dr Anna Olijnyk
Lecturer, Law School, The University of Adelaide
Dr Anna Olijnyk is a lecturer, and Deputy Director of the Public Law and Policy Research Unit, at Adelaide Law School, University of Adelaide. She teaches and researches in constitutional and administrative law. Her work has been published in leading Australian law journals, and she is co-author of Government Accountability: Australian Administrative Law for Cambridge University Press. 
Mr Paul O’Sullivan AO CNZM
Former Diplomat and Director General of Australian Security Intelligence Organisation

Paul O’Sullivan is a Company Director and Strategic Advisor. He was previously the Chief of Staff to the Commonwealth Attorney-General from October 2013 to June 2016. Previously he was Australia’s High Commissioner to New Zealand from March 2009 until July 2012. Prior to taking up that appointment, Mr O’Sullivan was Director-General of the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) from 2005 until 28 February 2009. He was concurrently a Commissioner of the National Crime Commission. In 2004 and 2005, Mr O’Sullivan was the Senior Adviser (International) in the office of the Prime Minister (The Hon John Howard MP). 

Mr O’Sullivan served overseas as Australia’s Ambassador in Bonn and Berlin (1999-2003), Deputy Chief of Mission in Washington (1996-98) and Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations, accredited in Geneva and New York (1991-94). Mr O’Sullivan has also served in the Australian Embassies in Rome and Cairo. He was Australian Commissioner-General for the 2000 World Expo held in Hanover.

In Canberra, Mr O’Sullivan has held a range of senior positions in the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade including Acting Secretary (2002-2003), Deputy Secretary (2003-2004), First Assistant Secretary, International Organisations and Legal Division (1995-96) and First Assistant Secretary, Americas and Europe Division (1994-95).

Mr O'Sullivan was made an Officer of the Order of Australia in the Australia Day 2010 Honours List, for service to public administration through significant contributions to the advancement of Australia's security and the development of international relations.

Judge Bala Reddy
State Courts Singapore

Mr Bala Reddy is currently Principal District Judge in the State Courts of Singapore and oversees the Community Justice and Tribunals Division. Prior to this he was Chief Prosecutor at the Attorney General’s Chambers, Singapore. He is an advocate and solicitor of the Supreme Courts of Singapore, Brunei and also a solicitor England and Wales. He is also a Fellow of the Singapore Institute of Arbitrators.  As a litigator with more than 39 years’ experience he has conducted several landmark criminal prosecutions and appeals in Singapore. As Principal District Judge from 2005 to 2008 he was instrumental in setting up the Community Court in Singapore.

Besides his LLB (Hons)(Spore), LLM(NUS) and M Phil(Criminology) Cambridge(Trinity Hall) degrees he is also an alumnus of the Harvard Business School (HBS) and the UN Asia and Far East Institute for the Prevention of Crime (UNAFEI). From 1992 to 2014 he was senior teaching fellow, subject co-ordinator and Examiner for Criminal Litigation Practice Course for the Part B exams conducted by the Singapore Institute of Legal Education and its predecessor, Board of Legal Education. He is also an adjunct faculty member in the law school at the Singapore Management University.

He has represented Singapore at a number of international negotiations including the UN Convention against Transnational Organised Crime and its Protocols and the UN Convention against Corruption (UNCAC). He has also held appointments as the UNDP legal expert in the Government of Vietnam – UNDP Project on strengthening the penal laws of Vietnam; serving as the legal expert in the Asia Pacific Group against Money laundering (APG) Mutual Evaluations of countries; and serving as legal expert to review compliance by several member nations in the implementation of the provisions of UNCAC.

Dr Liz Richarson
Deputy Director, Australian Centre for Justice Innovation, Monash University
  Dr Liz Richardson is Deputy Director and Senior Research Fellow at the Australian Centre for Justice Innovation and completed her PhD on mental health courts in 2016. She has worked on a number of projects in the field of justice innovation and written several publications on self-represented litigants. In 2004, as the Senior Judicial Researcher at the County Court of Victoria Liz wrote the monograph Self-Represented Parties: A Trial Management Guide for the Judiciary which was published by the County Court of Victoria. She co-authored the reports E Richardson, T Sourdin and N Wallace, Self-Represented Litigants: A Literature Review (May 2012) and E Richardson, T Sourdin and N Wallace, Self-Represented Litigants: Gathering Useful Information Final Report (June 2012), and the article E Richardson and T Sourdin, ‘Mind the Gaps: Making Evidence Based Decisions about Self-Represented Litigants’ (2013) 22(4) Journal of Judicial Administration 191. In 2018, she is co-authoring, with Dr Janina Boughey and Dr Genevieve Grant a report for the AIJA, 'The Impacts of Self-Represented Litigants on Civil and Administrative Justice: Environmental Scan of Research, Policy and Practice'.
Ms Sue Salthouse
Disability Advocate, ACT

Ms Sue Salthouse has worked in the area of social justice and human rights since 1996. She is particularly concerned about how the intersecting issues of gender and disability discrimination affect women with disabilities. Sue is Chair of Women With Disabilities ACT, a systemic advocacy organisation which bases activities on principles delineated in the Human Rights conventions ratified by Australia.

She is a Director of Women in Adult and Vocational Education (WAVE) and Rights & Inclusion Australia and a past chair of Advance Personnel (Disability Employment Service). In 2015-16 she was the ACT representative on the COAG Advisory Panel on reducing violence against women and their children. She is a member of the governing Council of the University of Canberra. Sue was announced as the ACT Senior Woman of the Year 2014, a finalist in Australian of the year in 2015, the 2015-16 ACT Citizen of the Year, and won the national disability sector Lesley Hall Leadership Award in 2017.

Mr Warwick Soden
Principal Registrar, Federal Court of Australia

Warwick Soden is the Chief Executive Officer and Principal Registrar of the Federal Court of Australia.  Mr Soden is also the Chief Executive Officer and Principal Registrar of the Family Court of Australia.  He has the responsibility for the effective and efficient operation of all aspects of the management and administration of the Federal Court, Family Court, Federal Circuit Court of Australia and the National Native Title Tribunal.

Mr Soden takes a very active role in developing new and innovative practices and procedures for the Court. He has been instrumental in designing improvements to the operation of the Courts, which has included, among other things, the implementation of the Electronic Court File in the Federal Court, and its introduction in the family law jurisdiction.  Mr Soden has also established the Courts’ Artificial Intelligence Committee and is currently developing an in-court system for digital litigation.


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