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  • 22 Oct 2019 10:45 AM | John Arthur (Administrator)

    “William Ah Ket’s contribution to diversity in the legal profession”; William Ah Ket Scholarship Presentation by The Hon Susan Kiefel AC, Chief Justice of Australia, Asian Australian Lawyers Association, Great Hall, High Court of Australia, 9 October 2019


  • 18 Oct 2019 7:10 PM | Reimen Hii (Administrator)

    The AALA (Qld) branch is proud to partner with the Justice and the Law (JATL) at the University of Queensland to present the JATL's first formal lecture and the 2019 launch of the 'Pandora's Box' academic journal. 

    Date: Thursday 24 October 2019
    Time: 6.00pm to 9.00pm
    Location: Banco Court, Supreme Court of Queensland
    415 George Street, Brisbane QLD 4000
    Cost: $5.20 (Students) & $25.80 (Professionals)

    The lecture will be presented by Catherine Chiang, AALA (Qld) secretary and a barrister at Wilberforce Chambers in Brisbane. The theme of this year’s journal is ‘Identity in the Law’. The journal canvasses issues such as the gendered view of domestic violence law and rape law, and the same sex marriage plebiscite.

    The aim of Pandora’s Box is to open up academic discussion of legal, social and political issues to a broader audience. This is achieved by featuring interviews, articles and book reviews from distinguished judges, academics, and practitioners. 

    Registrations and further information are available at: http://www.jatl.org/jatl-lecture 

  • 11 Oct 2019 10:43 AM | Anonymous

    A Victorian lawyer has been named this year’s winner of the William Ah Ket Scholarship.

    Tienyi Long, a legal and governance officer at Glen Eira City Council in Melbourne, was awarded the scholarship for her essay on how equal justice can be achieved for diverse communities in a  multifaceted and complex society. Tienyi’s essay examines how the legal profession can become better equipped to respond to diverse clients.

    Tienyi received the award from High Court Chief Justice The Honourable Susan Kiefel AC at an event held on Wednesday evening in the Great Hall of the High Court in Canberra.

    Sydney graduate lawyer Sandra Hu and Melbourne graduate Amy Pereira were named as runners up.

    This year marks the third year of the William Ah Ket Scholarship, an initiative of the Asian Australian Lawyers Association (AALA). The scholarship is named after William Ah Ket, who in 1904 became the first Australian barrister of Chinese origin. It is sponsored by Maddocks, where William Ah Ket was an articled clerk in 1903.

    The winner of the scholarship receives $6,000, while the runners up receive $1,000 each.

    The winning paper was chosen by a panel of judges:

    • The Honourable Joshua Wilson, Justice of the Family Court of Australia
    • The Honourable Helen Murrell, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Australian Capital Territory
    • Professor Sally Wheeler OBE, Dean of ANU College of Law
    • Patrick Ibbotson, Partner, Maddocks

    AALA National President Kingsley Liu congratulated Tienyi on her successful essay.

    ‘This year saw the highest number of expressions of interest and the highest number of essays submitted in the scholarship’s history,’ Kingsley said.

    ‘The scope and quality of the essays were outstanding and the judges had an incredibly difficult job of deciding the winner from the shortlisted finalists.’

    The papers will be published on the AALA website in due course.

  • 11 Oct 2019 8:55 AM | Wai Kaey Soon (Administrator)

    On Tuesday 17 September 2019, the NSW Branch of the Asian Australian Lawyers Association in collaboration with Clayton Utz proudly hosted a special breakfast panel event - Women in Law: Lean In. This was the fourth event in AALA's inaugural Diversity Series 2019.

    Coordinated by AALA NSW Committee Member, Stefanie Cheong, Lawyer, Clayton Utz and moderated by award-winning mentor and advocate, Jennifer Harris, Special Counsel, Clayton Utz, the event welcomed an impressive panel:

    §  Kounny Rattley, Partner, Clayton Utz;

    §  Keshni Maharaj, Special Counsel (Partner from 1 January 2020), Clayton Utz; and

    §  Erika Aligno, Advocate at Inner City Legal Centre, Content Manager and Freelance Content Producer.

    Warmly opened by Ken Saurajen, Partner and cultural diversity lead at Clayton Utz, the partnership with AALA reaffirmed the firm’s strong commitment to foster a diverse and inclusive workplace for its people.

    The AALA NSW Secretary, Marija Yelavich, provided a welcome on behalf of AALA. The theme of the morning was “Lean In”, promoting AALA’s commitment to intersectional diversity and the key message: humans must lean in to support each other…by openly sharing our stories, struggles and journey, we lean in. We learn that we are in fact not alone!

    Jennifer openly and warmly shared her own personal story about being a working parent, whilst navigating and excelling in her legal career. As special guest, NSW Law Society President, Elizabeth Espinosa, noted, the panel also discussed the importance of flexible working arrangements and the important role that partners, such as husbands, have played, in particular when choosing to be the stay-at-home parent in the relationship.

    Discussing key themes such as mental health and healthy relationships in both the professional and personal context, the panel’s key pieces of take-aways for the audience were as follows:

    §  Kounny:

    o   Take ownership and control of your career. I was hardworking but was otherwise quite passive when it came to my career and didn't think or plan too much when it came to the bigger picture. However I learnt that you need to not be passive and take control.

     §  Erika:

    o   If it [your career] doesn’t feel right, make sure you have something on the side so when you’re ready, you will have that skillset.

    o   Know when to rest: this will be the time to ask questions. You can work hard, but you need to rest. And also know when to quit.

      §  Keshni:

    o   Embrace and cherish your networks. While your ‘professional network’ is important, those who support you personally are those who you need to cherish. Also build your internal, ‘at-work’ network and support each other. This really helps with building resilience in your legal career.

     §  Jennifer:

    o   Law can be an isolating career if you let it. Connect with your community. It is worth putting the time and effort in building your own sense of belonging to pave the way for a rewarding and sustainable career.

    Sharing their stories with a room filled with all genders, the panel acknowledged and paid tribute to the history of sacrifice and resilience that made today possible. AALA acknowledges and pays tribute to the recent passing of The Hon. Jane Matthews AO. Without the leadership of such women, the legal profession would not be what we celebrate today. Whilst we must continue to push for change, welcome diversity and lean in, this event was a true testament to how important it is to understand that we are not the first, we will not be the last and as one woman rises, we all rise. 


  • 07 Oct 2019 6:10 PM | Reimen Hii (Administrator)

    The AALA (Qld) branch is proud to partner with the Queensland Law Society to host a professionals networking evening for lawyers, business and accounting professionals. 

    Date: Wednesday 23 October 2019
    Time: 6.00pm to 8.00pm
    Location: Mrs Browns Bar and Kitchen
    32 Commercial Road, Newstead QLD 4006
    Cost: $35 for AALA  

    Join us for a relaxed night of networking with like-minded people from CA ANZ, the Legal Forecast, Pride in the Law and the Asian Australian Lawyers Association - you'll not only meet other young legal professionals but also young business and accounting professionals.

    The event will be a fantastic opportunity to build connections and your network. Drinks and canapes will be provided.

    AALA members are entitled to a concession rate of $35 (non-QLS, AALA, Pride in the Law, and TLF members cost is $55).

    Registrations and further information are available at: www.services.qls.com.au/web/eventscalendar/event_display.aspx?EventKey=BU1204

    We hope to see you there!

  • 27 Sep 2019 9:24 PM | Wai Kaey Soon (Administrator)

    Asian Australian Lawyers’ Association would like to congratulate all successful applicants for Silk in New South Wales for 2019. AALA would also like to specifically congratulate the following two successful applicants:

    1. David Wai Mun Chin, of 5 Wentworth Chambers; and
    2. Tiffany Wong, of Banco Chambers.
    Asian Australian Lawyers Association is an organisation dedicated to increasing and celebrating cultural diversity in the law.
  • 23 Sep 2019 4:41 PM | Anonymous

    Seeking diversity in the legal profession is just the beginning. What’s next? The Asian Australian Lawyers Association and Muslim Legal Network are teaming up to find out.

    Join the ABC’s Jane Lee and a distinguished panel of legal professionals as we go beyond the established merits of diversity in the profession and tackle how and why we facilitate inclusive practices, including managing cultural differences and tokenism and exploring practical ways for you and your workplace to lead positive change beyond diversity.

    The event will be held on Tuesday, 8th October 2019 at Level 26/ 181 William Street Melbourne VIC 3000 from 6pm to 8pm. The event is free for all AALA and MLN members. Please register your attendance here, as tickets are limited. Please RSVP by 1st October 2019.

    This event is proudly supported by Ashurst, Melbourne Lawyers and Mediators, Australian Multicultural Foundation and Russell Kennedy.

  • 06 Sep 2019 10:37 AM | Anonymous

    The Victorian Legal Services Board and Commissioner (VLSBC) – the primary regulator of the legal profession in Victoria – has commissioned the market research firm Ipsos to conduct a state-wide survey looking at the prevalence and nature of sexual harassment in Victoria’s legal workplaces.

    The survey is open to lawyers as well as non-lawyers working in legal workplaces in Victoria. It is also open to former lawyers and others who have previously worked in the legal sector. It is important for the VLSBC to hear directly from people who have experienced, witnessed or heard about sexual harassment in Victoria’s legal sector.

    The survey will close at midnight on Monday 9 September 2019.

    All Victorian lawyers with a current practising certificate have been emailed a unique link to the survey, to the email address they provided to VLSBC when renewing their practising certificates.

    Everyone else who is currently working (or has worked) in a legal workplace in Victoria, and clients of Victorian lawyers can access the ‘open’ link to the survey.

    The results of the survey will help VLSBC gain an accurate and comprehensive understanding of sexual harassment in the profession and the wider legal workforce in Victoria, and inform VLSBC’s response to this issue. 

    The survey should take about 10-25 minutes of your time. All responses are anonymous and will be kept strictly confidential.

    If you have any questions, please call VLSBC on 03 9679 8001. For more information about the survey click here.

  • 30 Aug 2019 3:45 PM | Anonymous

    Kelvin Ng, AALA (Vic) Committee Member, spoke as a panelist at the ‘Diversity in Law Panel’ held by the Deakin Law Students’ Society on 29 August 2019. The other panelists were Ella Van Der Schans, President of Victorian Women Lawyers, Jared Heath, Chair of Pride - Corrs Network Steering Committee, and Natsuko Ogawa, Head of the All - Ashurst network.

    The panelists engaged in an insightful discussion regarding the importance and benefits of diversity, under-representation of diverse groups, improvements and future challenges, and how students can meaningfully contribute.

    Thank you Deakin Law Students’ Society for holding the event and Kelvin and the panelists for speaking.

    #aalaeventsmelb #diversity #inclusion #culturaldiversity

  • 28 Aug 2019 10:03 AM | Anonymous

    On 22 August 2019, Asian Australian Lawyers Association (Vic) were delighted to hold its Speed Networking event with the support of RC & Co Lawyers.

    Rochelle Castro, principal solicitor of RC & Co Lawyers introduced guest speaker Tuanh Nguyen, immediate past AALA National President and current PWC Legal Director.

    Tuanh spoke of the value of networking as a way of investing in relationships in a genuine and meaningful way. She provided helpful reflections on her approach to networking and its impact on her career pathway.

    Each pair of participants had 4 minutes to get to know one another before rotating to the next person. It was a fantastic opportunity to bring together legal professionals of our membership who are in different stages of their careers. 

    Special thanks to Tuanh for her continued support and RC & Co Lawyers for holding the event at its offices and providing canapes and refreshments on the night.

    Thank you to everyone for making the event a successful one!





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