The Andrews Labor Government has today announced the appointment of Caitlin English as Deputy State Coroner.
With a legal career spanning three decades – including the last five years at the Coroners Court of Victoria – Ms English brings extensive experience to the role.
She has overseen coronial inquests into a range of important and high-profile matters, including deaths in custody, and as a result of drowning, ingestion of button batteries and medical tourism.
Prior to her Coroners Court appointment in 2014 she served as a magistrate for more than 13 years, including six years at the Broadmeadows Magistrates’ Court where she sat on the Koori Court and Children’s Court.
Her wide-ranging career as a magistrate also included sitting in criminal, civil, family violence and victims of crime jurisdictions.
Ms English started her career at law firm Minter Ellison, and has also worked for the Legal Aid Commission of Victoria (now Victoria Legal Aid) and the Public Interest Law Clearing House (now Justice Connect).
She completed a prestigious Churchill Fellowship in 1999, reporting on the delivery of pro bono legal services in the United States and England.
She is currently Chair of the Coroners Education Committee and the Coroners Court Koori Issues Committee, and served on the Magistrates’ Bench Book Committee for 12 years, including as its inaugural editor.
Ms English has a Bachelor of Arts with Honours and a Bachelor of Laws, as well as a Master of Arts in Public Policy from the University of Melbourne.
She will replace the current Deputy State Coroner Iain West, who has served in the role since 1993 and retires this month.
Quotes attributable to Attorney-General Jill Hennessy
“Ms English’s wide-ranging experience as a lawyer, magistrate and coroner makes her an ideal candidate for this important role.”
“In her five years as a coroner she has shown a strong commitment to reducing preventable deaths and enhancing public safety, and I congratulate her on this appointment.”
“I would also like to thank Iain West for his outstanding service and invaluable contribution to the Coroners Court over more than 25 years.”
Reviewed 19 August 2020