Past President - Jim Peters QC

Weclome - His Honour Chief Judge Peter Kidd

[5 Oct 2015]

Address at the welcome on Monday 5 October 2015 to His Honour Chief Judge Peter Kidd on his appointment to the County Court by James W S Peters QC, President of the Victorian Bar.

Welcome - The Honourable Justice Michelle Gordon

[11 Sep 2015]

Welcome address by James W S Peters QC, President of the Victorian Bar - Friday 11 September in the High Court at Melbourne on the occasion of the first sitting in Melbourne of the Honourable Justice Michelle Gordon as a Justice of the High Court of Australia.

Welcome - The Honourable Justice Jane Dixon

[19 Aug 2015]

Address at the welcome on Wednesday 19 August to the Honourable Justice Jane Dixon upon her appointment to the Supreme Court of Victoria by James W S Peters QC, President of the Victorian Bar.

Welcome - The Honourable Justice Michelle Gordon

[12 Jun 2015]

Welcome address by James W S Peters QC, President of the Victorian Bar - Tuesday 9 June 2015 in the High Court at Canberra - at the swearing-in and welcome of the Honourable Justice Michelle Gordon as a justice of the High Court of Australia.

Welcome - The Honourable Associate Justice Mary-Jane Ierodiaconou

[19 May 2015]

Address at the welcome on Tuesday 19 May 2015 to the Honourable Associate Justice Mary-Jane Ierodiaconou upon her appointment as an Associate Judge of the Supreme Court of Victoria by James W S Peters QC, President of the Victorian Bar.

Farewell - The Honourable Justice Kenneth Hayne AC

[18 May 2015]

Farewell address by James W S Peters QC, President of the Victorian Bar Council on Friday 15 May 2015 at 9.15am in the High Court in Melbourne on the occasion of the last Melbourne sitting of the Honourable Justice Kenneth Hayne AC as a justice of the High Court of Australia.

Address at the Ceremonial Sitting of the Supreme Court of Victoria to Acknowledge the Centenary of the Landings at Gallipoli

[24 Apr 2015]

Address at the Ceremonial Sitting of the Supreme Court of Victoria to acknowledge the Centenary of the Landings at Gallipoli - Friday 24 April 2015 - by James W S Peters QC, President of the Victorian Bar Council.

Welcome - The Honourable Justice Peter Riordan

[20 Mar 2015]

Address at the Welcome on Thursday 19 March 2015 to the Honourable Justice Peter Riordan upon his appointment to the Supreme Court of Victoria by James W S Peters QC, President of the Victorian Bar Council.

Appointments

[13 Mar 2015]

The Victorian Bar welcomes the announcement this week of the appointment of Peter Riordan QC as a Judge of the Supreme Court and the appointments of John O'Brien and Carolene Gwynn as Magistrates of the Magistrates Court of Victoria.

Obituary - His Honour Geoffrey Michael Byrne

[13 Mar 2015]

Sadly, his Honour Geoffrey Byrne died last Sunday. His Honour practiced as a barrister and Crown Prosecutor and served as a Judge of the County Court for more than 25 years until his retirement in 1997. We send our condolences to his family and his friends.

2015 Australian Bar Association Conference - early bird extended

[13 Mar 2015]

The early bird offer for the 2015 Australian Bar Association has been extended until the end of March. The conference will be held in Washington DC and Boston in July 2015. Further details about the conference including registration are available here.

National Commercial Law Seminar

[26 Feb 2015]

Remarks by Jim Peters QC at the National Commercial Law Seminar on Wednesday 25 February 2015. Click here.

Welcome - The Honourable Justice Geoffrey Nettle

[13 Feb 2015]

Welcome address by James W S Peters QC, Chairman of the Victorian Bar Council on Friday 13 February 2015 on the occasion of the first Melbourne sitting of the Honourable Justice Geoffrey Nettle as a Justice of the High Court of Australia.

Welcome - The Honourable Justice Geoffrey Nettle

[4 Feb 2015]

Welcome address by James W S Peters QC, Chairman of the Victorian Bar Council on Tuesday 3 February 2015 in the High Court at Canberra for the Honourable Justice Geoffrey Nettle upon his swearing-in as a Justice of the High Court of Australia. Click here.

The swearing-in ceremony can be viewed on the High Court of Australia website.

Appointments - The Honourable Justice Stephen Kaye AM and The Honourable Justice Rita Zammit

[3 Feb 2015]

The Governor in Council has today appointed the Honourable Justice Stephen William Kaye AM a Judge of Appeal of the Supreme Court of Victoria.

Justice Kaye has served as a Judge of the Court since 16 December 2003.

The Governor in Council has today appointed the Honourable Associate Justice Rita Zammit a Judge of the Supreme Court of Victoria.

Justice Zammit has served as an Associate Judge of the Court since 22 March 2010.

Victorian Bar Appoints New CEO

[30 Jan 2015]

I am pleased to have yesterday announced the appointment of a new Victorian Bar CEO in Sarah Fregon.       

Sarah will come to us from her position as General Counsel and Head of Corporate Social Responsibility at PZ Cussons Australia and New Zealand. She is also the Chair of the Victorian Liquor Control Advisory Council.  

Sarah has an impressive and successful track record in the law, and shares our commitment to excellence.  

Sarah has also spent 8 years of her career at the Victorian Bar, and so will have an excellent insight into practice at the Bar.  

Sarah will commence in March this year and I look forward to working with her.
I would also like to give sincere thanks to Stephen Hare, outgoing CEO, for his seven years of dedicated service to the Bar. Stephen has made a distinguished contribution to the Bar, and we thank him for his ongoing efforts and commitment over this substantial period of time. I wish Stephen all the best in his next endeavours.

Please see further the press release here.

Farewell - the Honourable Justice Crennan AC

[12 Dec 2014]

The last Melbourne sitting of her Honour Justice Susan Crennan AC took place this morning. Thank you to those who attended this important sitting. We thank her Honour for her exemplary work on the High Court during her tenure, and wish her Honour the very best into retirement. 

Congratulations to our new Attorney General

[5 Dec 2014]

Congratulations to our new Attorney General, the Honourable Martin Pakula MP, who was sworn in on Thursday morning. The Bar remains committed to developing strong and constructive working relationships with government and I look forward to working with Mr Pakula over our respective terms in office.

Appointment of the Honourable Justice Geoffrey Nettle to the High Court of Australia

[5 Dec 2014]

Congratulations to the Honourable Justice Geoffrey Nettle, a former member of our Bar, on his appointment to the High Court. Justice Nettle will replace the Honourable Justice Susan Crennan AC as of February next year.

Law Council of Australia Executive

[5 Dec 2014]

Congratulations to Fiona McLeod SC of our Bar, on her appointment as Treasurer of the Law Council of Australia this week.   

Law Council Awards - the Honourable Geoffrey Eames AM QC

[5 Dec 2014]

Congratulations to the recipient of the Law Council of Australia President's Medal this week, the Honourable Geoffrey Eames AM QC, formerly of our Bar, and nominated by our Bar to receive this honour.  

Silk appointments

[28 Nov 2014]

Congratulations to those appointed Senior Counsel on 26 November 2014, by the Honourable Chief Justice Marilyn Warren AC:

Peter Fox
Paul Bernard Jens
Brendan Francis Kissane
David George Robertson
Robert Snowdon Hay
Jeremy Arthur Frederick Twigg
Timothy John Paul Walker
Michael John Galvin
Jacinta Mary Forbes
Ian William Doggett Upjohn
Christopher Boyce
Helen Mary Joan Rofe
Kristen Louise Walker
Steven James Moore
Trevor Edwin Wraight
Lachlan Wishart Leaf Armstrong
Pasquale Zappia
Rowena Jane Orr

It is an honour for every barrister who reaches this significant benchmark as it recognises the achievement of professional excellence and leadership at the Bar.

We welcome Victoria’s newest silks to this proud tradition and thank the Chief Justice for her thorough consultation with the profession and the judiciary during this year’s process, and for her continuing commitment to the appointment of silks in this State.  

Ceremonial sittings will take place on 5 December 2014. Click here for further information.

For those unsuccessful applicants who would like to receive feedback I would be pleased to meet with you during the week commencing 15 December 2014.

ABA Advanced Trial Advocacy Course - January 2015

[28 Nov 2014]

I strongly encourage members to take part in the ABA's 9th Annual Advanced Trial Advocacy Course as it is an excellent and convenient opportunity to enhance professional standing.

The course is being held next January. The coaching faculty is amongst the one of the best assembled with accomplished judges and Silks from overseas and Australia and a number of international and interstate silks including the Bars of England and Wales, New Zealand, South Africa and Malaysia.

John C Walker Scholarship

[28 Nov 2014]

On Thursday 27 November 2014 I attended a lunch at Arnold Bloch Leibler to celebrate the establishment of The John C Walker Scholarship at Melbourne Law School. This initiative, in the name of Mr John Walker QC, recognises the contribution that Mr Walker has made to the legal profession as a leader of the criminal Bar and one of Australia’s leading jury advocates. It was a pleasure to see so many members of the judiciary, our Bar, leading solicitors and respected and prominent business people and of course the Melbourne Law School celebrating John’s magnificent career.

Appointment of Senior Counsel

[26 Nov 2014]

The Honourable Chief Justice Marilyn Warren AC has today announced the appointment of the persons listed below as Senior Counsel in and for the State of Victoria

Peter Fox
Paul Bernard Jens
Brendan Francis Kissane
David George Robertson
Robert Snowdon Hay
Jeremy Arthur Frederick Twigg
Timothy John Paul Walker
Michael John Galvin
Jacinta Mary Forbes
Ian William Doggett Upjohn
Christopher Boyce
Helen Mary Joan Rofe
Kristen Louise Walker
Steven James Moore
Trevor Edwin Wraight
Lachlan Wishart Leaf Armstrong
Pasquale Zappia
Rowena Jane Orr

Frank Costigan QC Oration

[21 Nov 2014]

The Victorian Bar and Transparency International last night hosted the Frank Costigan Oration in the Banco Court. It was a night of celebration of one of the greats of our Bar. Two former Chairmen of the Bar spoke - Justice Susan Crennan and Robin Brett QC. The theme was integrity as an attribute, and the role of oversight of the Victorian Integrity System. Integrity is critical to practice at the Bar. Frank Costigan QC was an example par excellence. His integrity never wavered in the fight against corruption and in ensuring accountability in government. It is a standard that we should all aspire to regardless of the difficulty in achieving it.

Victorian Reports Survey - Have your say

[21 Nov 2014]

Members are encouraged to participate in the Victorian Reports Survey that is listed here on the Vic Bar website. This Survey is intended to obtain feedback about the Victorian Reports on behalf of the Council of Law Reporting, to confirm what components are working, as well as to provide guidance as to what can be improved upon. You, as a user or potential user, can provide your thoughts and views on the components, delivery, and subscription prices of the VRs. The survey closes on 3 December.

News from the Chairman

[14 Nov 2014]

I thank the retiring members of the previous Bar Council and welcome those re-elected and newly elected. We look forward to serving the Bar this year.

Will Alstergren wrote in this column last year that his focus would be on “engaging and strengthening relationships with solicitors, the Courts and the community and working to improve opportunities for barristers”. Will has done all that and more by tireless personal effort, working closely with the Bar Council and Bar Office Staff. The Bar as a whole has benefitted from his efforts. He leaves it in great shape. I feel a great responsibility as successor to such an outstanding and respected Chairman.