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New Appointment To Victoria’s Highest Court

13 April 2021

The Andrews Labor Government today announced the appointment of Solicitor-General Kristen Walker QC as a judge of the Court of Appeal.

Ms Walker’s appointment as a judge of appeal follows a distinguished career of more than 25 years in the legal profession – most recently providing expert advice to the Government on significant legal issues as Solicitor-General since 2017.

A specialist in constitutional law, administrative law and human rights law, Ms Walker has been a QC for more than six years and has practised extensively across several jurisdictions including the High Court, Federal Court, and Victorian and ACT Supreme Courts.

This experience includes appearing in more than 30 High Court cases, including matters involving the right to vote under the Australian Constitution and a number of high-profile cases on refugee law.

Ms Walker has also appeared in important cases concerning the Victorian Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities and the ACT Human Rights Act.

Ms Walker’s extensive advice practice includes working as a legal adviser to the Independent Media Inquiry in 2011‑2012 and as counsel assisting the Nauruan Parliament in relation to constitutional reform in 2009-2010.

As the top student in her graduating year at Melbourne Law School, Ms Walker was admitted as a barrister and solicitor in 1993 before becoming an associate at the High Court to Sir Anthony Mason, the Chief Justice of Australia.

Ms Walker went on to receive a Master of Laws from both the University of Melbourne and Columbia University Law School in New York, after which she worked as Adjunct Professor at Columbia and Visiting Professor at the University of Arizona.

Ms Walker also worked as an Associate Professor of Law at the University of Melbourne, teaching subjects including international and constitutional law, where she remains a Principal Fellow. She has also published in the areas of constitutional law, international law and human rights law.

Ms Walker’s appointment will start on 3 May 2021.

Quotes attributable to Attorney-General Jaclyn Symes   

“Kristen Walker QC has made an exceptional mark on her field and is well respected in the legal and academic communities. I congratulate her on her well-deserved appointment.”

“Ms Walker’s distinguished career spans across jurisdictions and in significant and complex legal issues. This expertise and knowledge puts her in an excellent place to make a strong contribution to the Court of Appeal.”

“As Victorian Solicitor-General, Ms Walker has worked tirelessly to provide independent advice to the Government on many significant matters – I thank her for her contributions and guidance.”

Reviewed 13 April 2021

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