Australia appoints first female chief justice

Dhaka,  Thu,  21 September 2017
Published : 29 Nov 2016, 16:47:04

Australia appoints first female chief justice

The woman who has just been named the first female chief justice of Australia's High Court dropped out of school aged 15 in a bid for financial independence, reports BBC.

Though later regretting the move, it was not long before Susan Kiefel found work as a receptionist in a Brisbane law firm.

She finished her high school certificate part-time, then took a job as a legal clerk while completing a law degree at night.

Arriving at the bar in 1975, the Queenslander embarked on an impressive career which culminated on Tuesday with her being named Australia's 13th chief justice.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, in announcing the appointment, described Justice Kiefel's story as "an inspiration".

The Law Council of Australia called it a "landmark moment" for the nation and its legal system.

"Prior to her her appointment, Justice Kiefel was already a trailblazer for women in the legal profession," said Law Council president Stuart Clark.

"She was the first female QC appointed in Queensland in 1987. She was appointed to the Queensland Supreme Court in 1993 and the Federal Court of Australia in 1994."

She also served as Queensland Bar Association president and as a part-time Australian Law Reform commissioner, he said.

- TS
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