The Cairns Magistrates Court will be bolstered with the permanent appointment of two acting magistrates with extensive experience in regional areas.
Magistrate Mandy Bowen and Magistrate Scott Luxton will formally begin their roles on Monday.
One of the two positions is new, which recognises the increasing workload.
Magistrate Bowen was admitted as a solicitor to the Supreme Court of Queensland in 2004 and worked as a criminal lawyer with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Service (ATSILS) Cairns office for 16 years.
Her Honour spent more than a decade working in remote Cape York communities, including several where English is a second language.
Magistrate Bowen shouldered a heavy ATSILS workload and regularly assisted and mentored junior lawyers.
Her Honour’s ability to manage busy courts and work well under pressure gained her the ongoing respect of peers. Her Honour has acted as a magistrate when required for the past two years.
Magistrate Luxton was admitted was as a solicitor in 1999 and gained extensive experience in court registries.
His Honour assumed acting magistrate duties in some smaller courts early in his career. Before his permanent appointment, he had sat in 36 centres across Central, North and Far North Queensland, and suburban Brisbane.
His Honour has implemented innovations at several courts, resulting in greater efficiency and access to justice.
Magistrate Luxton was heavily involved in community work in his home town of Charters Towers, including as a volunteer, committee or board member of the local cricket, tennis, rugby union and swimming clubs, and the Blackheath and Thornburgh College.
Attorney-General Yvette D’Ath said the State Government was “committed to providing resources to the courts to allow them to function at optimum capacity”.
“The new magistrate position in Cairns comes on top of the government funding a new magistrate in July, specifically dedicated to the local Domestic and Family Violence court,” she said.
“At the same time the Government provided funds for the creation of three new permanent coroner positions.
“Magistrates Bowen and Luxton bring a wealth of experience to the roles and will be great assets to the Cairns Magistrates Court.”