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  • 29 Jul 2015 12:00 PM | Sining Wang (Administrator)

    The Asian Australian Lawyers Association would like to congratulate one of our members Charles Tan on his appointment as Magistrate to the Magistrates' Court. Mr Tan is Malaysian born with Chinese heritage, and is the first person of Chinese origin to be appointed a magistrate in Victoria. His appointment represents a significant milestone in working towards a culturally diverse judiciary.

    To read the official media release, please click here.

  • 22 Jul 2015 9:24 PM | Sining Wang (Administrator)

    Dear Members,

    If you have not yet done so, we would encourage you to apply for the AALA mentoring program as soon as possible.

    The program is open to practicing lawyers at all levels. To apply or to find out more, please click here.

    Applications close 24 July 2015 and the program is scheduled to launch for 12 August 2015.

  • 17 Jul 2015 10:55 AM | Deleted user

    Dear Members,

    Please see below information in relation to Menzies Foundation scholarships in law, which may be of interest to some members.

    Menzies Foundation scholarships in law

    The Menzies Foundation is looking for outstanding law graduates who are shaping up to be the next generation of leaders and looking to do further postgraduate study overseas.

    The Menzies Foundation is offering two scholarships for studying commencing in 2016.

    • The Sir Robert Menzies Memorial Scholarship in Law is for courses of study at UK universities.
    • The Sir Ninian Stephen Menzies Scholarship in International Law is for courses of study in international law at a prestigious overseas university.

    Both scholarships, valued at up to $75,000.

    Applications are now open and close on 31 August 2015

    To be eligible, applicants must be Australian citizens and hold a 1st class honours degree or equivalent and be planning to continue their career in Australia on completion of their study.

    Candidates should not only display academic excellence but also demonstrate outstanding leadership qualities and a commitment to and interest in community service.

    The funds are to meet compulsory university fees and contribute towards the cost of books, equipment, living and travel.

    You can see last year’s winners, Patrick Wall and Andrew Currie, online at:http://menziesfoundation.org.au/scholars/scholars-current

    For the full prospectus and to apply:

    Sir Robert Menzies Memorial Scholarship in Law: http://menziesfoundation.org.au/scholarships/law

    Sir Ninian Stephen Menzies Scholarship in International Law:http://menziesfoundation.org.au/scholarships/international-law

  • 10 Jul 2015 9:26 PM | Sining Wang (Administrator)

    Last year, Diversity Council Australia published a report entitled “Cracking the Cultural Ceiling: Future Proofing Your Business in the Asian Century”, in which it examined the issue of a bamboo ceiling.

    Dr Tom Verghese, founder of Cultural Synergies, has posted on his blog about some breakthroughs that he believes are necessary to overcome the bamboo ceiling. To read more, please click here.

  • 09 Jul 2015 9:27 PM | Sining Wang (Administrator)

    The Bar Council of India and the Society of Indian Law Firms have recently been in talks with their government about opening up the legal sector to foreign law firms. If the legal sector is opened up to foreign law firms, this may lead to more opportunities for collaboration between the Australian and Indian legal professions.

    Related articles can be found on the Times of India website and Australasian Lawyer.

  • 03 Jul 2015 9:28 PM | Sining Wang (Administrator)

    Dear Members,

    The AALA is excited to announce the launch of the 2015 mentoring program. Applications are now open to participate in the program as a mentee.

    For more information and application details, please click here.

    If you are a senior legal practitioner and would be interested in becoming a mentor, please contact us atmentorprogram@aala.org.au.

  • 18 Jun 2015 9:30 PM | Sining Wang (Administrator)

    The Federal Lawyer, the magazine of the American Federal Bar Association, has published its latest issue on the theme of “Diversity in the Law“.

    One of the feature articles specifically addresses the issue of cultural diversity and implicit bias in the legal profession. To read the article, please click here to visit the Federal Bar Association website.

  • 17 Jun 2015 9:32 PM | Sining Wang (Administrator)

    Dear Members,

    You are invited to join the Victorian Chapter of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (Australia) in celebration of the Centenary of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators. The guest speaker is The Hon Murray Gleeson AC, Chief Justice of Australia (1998 – 2008), a Companion of CIArb and Patron of CIArb Australia who will speak on Evidence in International Commercial Arbitrations.

    The event is not organised by the AALA, but AALA members are warmly invited to attend.

    Date: Tuesday, 23 June 2015

    Time: 5:45pm for 6:00pm to 7:30pm

    Venue: Clayton Utz
    Level 18, 333 Collins Street
    Melbourne VIC 3000

    For more information please click here to view the event flyer.

  • 10 Jun 2015 9:33 PM | Sining Wang (Administrator)

    Griffith University is conducting a short 5 minute survey aimed at understanding more about the experiences of Asian Australian individuals, and the ways in which prejudice, political action and racism affect individuals in Australia. The survey is anonymous and participants will go into a draw to win 1 of 5 $20 Coles Myer gift cards.

    The research is not conducted by the AALA, but we would show support for research that aligns with the AALA’s objectives of promoting cultural diversity in the law.

    To take the survey, please click here.

  • 03 Jun 2015 9:34 PM | Sining Wang (Administrator)

    On 25 May, the AALA held its first professional development seminar at the stunning Venetian gothic designed Donkey Wheel House.  The panel discussion featured ex-lawyer, now property developer, Mr Jason Yeap OAM, and government lawyer and board member, Ms Jenny Taing. The event was chaired by Ms Tuanh Nguyen of Baker & McKenzie, and the panel discussion moderated by Mr Cam Truong from the Victorian Bar. Throughout the evening the panelists provided insights, advice and learnings from their own unique journeys.


    One pearl of wisdom shared on the night included Ms Taing’s caution to avoid ‘tokenism’, and to always strive to keep your credibility intact by leading with the contribution you make, and not with your gender, heritage or age. Ms Taing also spoke about the importance of being humble and listening, qualities which have served her well in her capacity as a director on various health and not-for-profit boards, and also in her role as a lawyer. For those looking to join a board in the future, Ms Taing shared how she became a board member of the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital, which was by initially joining an advisory committee at the hospital and contributing for a few years, before being invited to join the board.

    Similarly, Mr Yeap discussed how he was invited to get involved with the National Gallery of Victoria, as a result of the passion he displayed while speaking to former Prime Minister John Howard about refugee matters. Ms Taing observed that a great thing about not-for-profit boards is that you get to work with people that aren’t lawyers, and get exposed to different perspectives, which can help makes you a better lawyer.


    Mr Yeap highlighted the important role of sponsorship in career advancement, and explained the difference between sponsorship and mentoring. Personal stories of the role the panelist’s mentors had played in their journeys were shared. When asked how to seek a mentor, Ms Taing shared that the ‘best mentoring relationships come through establishment of a real connection’, which she mentioned she was fortunate to have had with former Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser. On the topic of work-life-balance, Mr Yeap advised that he has always strived to balance his life equally between his family, career and community and, although perfect balance has not always been possible, he strives to equally give 1/3 of himself to each.


    The panelists acknowledge that different professions have different appetites for diversity, and that the legal profession is still quite conservative. Ms Taing added that, in the boardroom, the conversation is mostly about gender; and felt that it needs to become more sophisticated and look at wider diversity. Interestingly, Mr Yeap told the audience that “the best compliment he can get is that he is a good Australian”.

    Both Ms Taing and Mr Yeap encouraged participants to get involved in committees and sub-committees of the AALA and other organisations, to try and make a difference and to be clear on “what the next step is”. Mr Yeap also encouraged the audience of lawyers to use their skills to “advocate without fear”.
    The night came to an end with the panelists sharing a tenet for personal and professional fulfillment, which was to display your passion genuinely and to be true to yourself. The audience then had a chance to mingle with panelists and each other, over drinks and delicious food from Kinfolk.




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