Highly-respected Brisbane lawyer Frances Williams has become the first member of the solicitor’s branch of the legal profession to be appointed to the Supreme Court bench since August 2013.
Queensland Law Society President Luke Murphy today (Thurs, Feb 6) welcomed the appointment of veteran litigator Justice Williams – saying the Society had consistently advocated for the appointment of solicitors with considerable experience to the higher courts.
“On behalf of QLS’s more than 11,000 members I would like to congratulate Justice Williams on her well-deserved appointment,’’ Mr Murphy said.
“The Attorney-General’s choice is particularly worthy given Justice Williams’ extensive experience in managing large scale litigation and appeals.
The now former Corrs Chambers Westgarth partner’s career as a litigator includes commercial and construction disputes, competition, anti-trust and consumer protection law, Royal Commissions, regulatory investigations, inquiries and prosecutions.
The last solicitor appointed to the Queensland Supreme Court was Justice David Thomas – who was subsequently appointed a Federal Court of Australia judge in June 2017.
Justice Williams, who at the time of her appointment was the Society’s Litigation Rules Committee Deputy Chair, was last year recognised by QLS for more than 25-years of dedicated and distinguished service to the law.
Attorney-General Yvette D’Ath announced Justice Williams as one of two new Supreme Court appointments – the second being eminent silk Peter Callaghan, SC.
Mr Murphy also welcomed the announcement of Justice Callaghan’s elevation to the bench, saying: “Both appointments are a positive step forward to ensuring swift and effective justice for all Queenslanders through a well-resourced justice system.’’
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This story was originally published in Proctor February 2020.